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Team Ella – a County-wide show of support for a five-year-old fighting cancer

Ella, on her fifth birthday, started her first chemotherapy and radiation treatments.

Ella, on her fifth birthday, started her first chemotherapy and radiation treatments.

She’s a small child with a giant smile and she’s winning hearts all over Prince Edward County – and in hospitals from here to Ottawa.

Brave Ella, winning over the hearts of doctors and nurses everywhere she goes.

Brave Ella, winning over the hearts of doctors and nurses everywhere she goes.

EllaElla is spending her fifth birthday in hospital. The daughter of Kelly and Wes Mulder, and sister of Liam, Ella started her first chemotherapy treatment Wednesday morning at Kingston General Hospital and is then headed back to CHEO in Ottawa for her first radiation treatment.

“She stole all the hearts of the radiologists with her sweet smile,” reports mom on a Facebook page that has become a one-stop notification board for more than 1,800 friends, family members and supporters.

“We wanted to start a group so you could all follow Ella’s progress through this terrible time, instead of me writing many texts, emails and phone calls a day. I think it is best that we are spending as much time with our little peanut right now and it’s much easier to update just once.”

Mom reports it’s been a whirlwind of activity since Ella’s diagnosis July 5 of having a Wilms tumor. Ella had major surgery July 8 to remove a six-inch tumor attached to her kidney and remove the kidney itself.  She is expected to be treated with chemotherapy for six months and radiation for two weeks. A Wilms’ tumour is a cancer of the kidneys that typically occurs in children, rarely in adults.

“Ella is being very brave and warming the hearts of all the doctors and nurses at Kingston General and CHEO in Ottawa,” Kelly reports. “We would like to thank everyone for all the donations and support while we travel down this tough road. Ella is a true fighter and with the constant smile, she will beat this.”

In the meantime, the County is doing what the County does best – support one another through words and deeds – and is busy raising thousands of dollars to help the family with extensive costs involved with travel and care of their daughter.

It’s all under the banner of ‘Team Ella’.

A supportive County community raised $7,742.40 in a matter of hours last week.

A supportive County community raised $7,742.40 in a matter of hours last week.

Sarah Anderson and Christy Latchford were proud to report tears in their eyes as they told Ella and her parents via speakerphone that the County community had raised $7,742.40 in a matter of hours last week.

“We initially planned on a simple lemonade and water stand that our daughters – Lily and Avery and Abbie – who are close friends with Ella, would do to help raise some funds for the Mulders,” said Anderson. “The donations came flying in. We even had people show up ready to work – including Ella’s principal Kim Myderwyk, from Pinecrest, as well as teacher Erin Prinzen as well as family friends Lisa Scott and her children and Ella’s babysitter Payton Anderson. We couldn’t have done it without them.

The group also sold out of 700 specialty rubber bracelets that afternoon and had to order more as people are still asking for them.

Abbie Latchford, Lily and Avery Anderson initially planned a small lemonade stand to help their friend Ella. Then support came pouring in.

Abbie Latchford, Lily and Avery Anderson initially planned a small lemonade stand to help their friend Ella. Then support came pouring in.

“We raised $7,742.40. We were thrilled and overwhelmed by all the generous donations and support. This small town truly is an amazing place to live.”

She added that knowing Ella would be having her first chemo and radiology treatments on her fifth birthday, they also collected birthday cards.

“We ended up with a huge cardboard box of cards and Christy’s car was full of gifts that people had brought.”

When she reported to the Mulders, she noted they were at a loss for words and beyond thankful for all the support.

Lisa Zachariah and her children have been holding a lemonade, ice cream and freezie stand all this week from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. at 14 Nery Avenue, on the heights. They are also selling zucchini and lettuce from their garden.

“The kids were going to do this to raise money to go to Canada’s Wonderland but decided on their own to raise the money for Ella and her family instead,” said Lisa. “They’ve been five to six hours a day sitting out in this heat. I am very proud of each and every one of them. We are hoping to carry it through next week also.”

Jaimee,  Christopher, Alysha and Kayla are spending hot summer days selling lemonade, ice cream and freezies, as well as garden produce, to raise funds for Ella.

Jaime, Christopher, Alysha and Kayla are spending hot summer days selling lemonade, ice cream and freezies, as well as garden produce, to raise funds for Ella.

“This town is absolutely amazing,” reports Zachariah. “A man just pulled up and handed me a $20 to put in our jar. Made us cry.”

Amie Frost Lewis is looking into designing T-Shirts and hats emblazoned with “Team Ella Fight Like a Girl” and a gold ribbon symbolizing childhood cancer.

“We are on the road to recovery,” Kelly says in her Facebook report. “Ella is excited to put beads on her ‘brave’ necklace.” (When a child begins their journey with cancer or other life- challenging illnesses, they are given a necklace with their name on it. As they undergo difficult treatments such as chemotherapy, radiation and surgery, they receive special plastic or wooden beads, called Bravery Beads, to commemorate these milestones.)

Kelly’s aunt, Janet Kost, shared Ella’s story with co-workers in Winnipeg and offered homemade banana bread for sale.

“I have sold 104 loaves – more than I made so I’ll be baking up a storm for the next week or so. Once it is all delivered, I’ll be making a donation of over $600. I say over $600 because many people are donating more than I am charging for the banana bread so I am not exactly sure where the total will end up!”

And people who don’t know Ella, but have heard about her fight, are also looking for a win.

“We watch your posts and follow your story. You’re a special girl and you are going to kick it. We just want to let you know that we are rooting for you,” writes Julia Stanley. “This story made me hug my kids a little tighter. You have an amazing group of people supporting you – you must be a very special girl.”

More bracelets are expected to arrive Friday and are to be available at Subway and Crowe’s Footwear in Picton. A trust fund has been set up in Ella Mulder’s name at Scotia Bank Picton and Wellington. Donations can be made with a teller.
More photos and best wishes, follow Ella’s progress on the Facebook group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/297665553703950/

U9 soccer team is cheering for Team Ella all the way!

U9 soccer team is cheering for Team Ella all the way!

From the 2013 Prince Edward County T-ball league.  Go Ella Go!

From the 2013 Prince Edward County T-ball league. Go Ella Go!

Banner signed to brighten Ella's hospital room.

Banner signed to brighten Ella’s hospital room.

More support from friends!

More support from friends!

Brighton Speedway drivers and fans via the County's Turners, raised $3,875 for Team Ella.

Brighton Speedway drivers and fans raised $3,875 for Team Ella.

Lemonade stand at Claxton Electric

Lemonade stand at Claxton Electric

 

Love, Madison, Tory, Cathy and Shawn

Love, Madison, Tory, Cathy and Shawn

Ella-in-the-car

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  1. fed up says:

    I met Ella briefly last year. She’s a “going concern.”! Her vitality will see her through.

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