Nelsonites rally to raise funds for Katrina Fontaine
Friends and family are rallying around the daughter of a former City of Nelson Hydro Department employee and Mountain Spirit Triathlon club member, Roger Fontaine.
Katrina Fontaine, 26, has been diagnosed with a rare genetic condition affecting the collagen in her body called Ehlers Danlos Syndrome.
Ehlers-Danlos syndrome is a group of disorders which share common features including easy bruising, joint hypermobility (loose joints), skin that stretches easily (skin hyperelasticity or laxity), and weakness of tissues.
The Ehlers-Danlos syndromes are inherited in the genes that are passed from parents to offspring.
They are categorized according to the form of genetic transmission into different types with many features differing between patients in any given type. The fragile skin and loose joints is often a result of abnormal genes that produce abnormal proteins that confer an inherited frailty of collagen (the normal protein “glue” of our tissues).
“Roger is a man who would give you the shirt off of his back,” said triathlete friend Mike Kosof.
“He is one of the pillars of the mountain spirit triathlon club in Nelson. Roger volunteers his time at all the workouts.”
“Roger is the guy with the spare tubes ,the pump ,and the tools to keep you riding down the road,” Kosof added of his fellow triathlon member who is a seven-time Ironman distance finisher and has finished multiple Olympic distance and half ironman races.
“When you are having a bad day Roger is the guy they can still bring a smile to your face.“
Since 2012 Katrina has had a host of surgeries to fight the disease.
This month the pediatric social worker has a chance to have three neurosurgeries not available in Canada to help with her quality of life.
These surgeries run in the hundreds of thousands of dollars.
Which is why family, friends and City of Nelson employees are banding together to help raise funds at a Beer and Burger Silent Auction Fundraiser January 24 at Finley’s Irish Bar and Grill.
Tickets are $15 for the event that begins at 6 p.m.
Information on Katrina can be found at the YouCaring website
Anyone wanting to simply donate to the cause can made a contribution through CIBC account 7513135, Transit number 00070.