The Langley Walmart’s north entrance was a very busy place Saturday. Langley Township firefighters handed out daffodils and daffodil pins in exchange for donations to the Canadian Cancer Society while at the same time

Firefighter pays tribute to big sister through daffodils

Walmart welcomed Langley Township firefighters, who supported those living with cancer.

Araj Virk spent part of his Saturday at the north entrance of Langley’s Walmart, standing with his firefighting brethren.

Daffodils and daffodil pins in hand, they joined the battle against cancer.

On behalf of the Township of Langley Firefighters Charitable Society, local firefighters, including Araj, distributed daffodils and daffodil pins in exchange for donations to the Canadian Cancer Society.

The “Join the Fight” fundraiser took place last Saturday and Sunday (April 2 and 3) at the Walmart in Willoughby.

Each firefighter on shift late Saturday morning has had someone close to them affected by cancer – be it an uncle, a grandparent, or in Araj’s case, his older sister Jas Chohan.

Mom to nine-year-old Alisha and one-month-old Aliya, Jas is one of the lucky ones. That’s because the 39-year-old has overcome thyroid cancer – twice.

Araj and the rest of his very close family, which includes a middle brother, Aman, are hoping that the cancer stays away for good.

While four years separate them, Jas is as much like a mom to Araj as she is a big sister.

His sister’s initial diagnosis “was pretty rough,” Araj recalled.

“After she gave birth to her [first] daughter, when her daughter was about a year old, she found out she had cancer,” Araj shared. “She was fighting it for a few years, and beat it. But then it came back.”

Three-and-a-half years after Jas’s first cancer battle which included chemotherapy and radiation, came another scare.

“There were traces of cancer, still, in her thyroid,” Araj said.

Doctors removed Jas’s thyroid in their efforts to eradicate the cancer completely.

“Now she’s doing better,” Araj said. “But she has to take medication for the rest of her life.”

Coming from a relatively small family, having Jas battle cancer “hit pretty hard,” Araj said: “It hit me like a ton of bricks. You never expect it to happen to one of your siblings.”

“The reason it hit so hard is, I lost my uncle, my mom’s brother, to cancer,” Araj continued. “It runs in the family. There’s a few individuals who have battled cancer] or lost their lives.”

Araj – a paid on-call firefighter and a full-time aircraft structural engineer – has been actively involved in various fundraisers in support of cancer research and patients.

“I want to make a difference,” he said.

Symbol of strength

April is Daffodil Month, the Canadian Cancer Society’s national fundraising campaign for the fight against cancer.

Money raised this month helps people living with cancer and their families. Donations fund life-saving research and information and support services.

According to the Canadian Cancer Society, the daffodil “is a symbol of strength and courage in the fight against cancer.”

Across the country, volunteers are selling bright yellow daffodil pins, as well as fresh daffodils.

Buying a daffodil pin and wearing it in April is a way of showing support for Canadians living with cancer.

To buy a daffodil online, or to donate to the Canadian Cancer Society, visit cancer.ca/.

 

Just Posted

Langley Rams downed by Saskatoon Hilltops at Canadian Bowl

Four-time Canadian Junior Football League champions built up an insurmountable lead

VIDEO: Crash on 88 Avenue in Langley

At least one car suffered extensive damage

Extreme weather alert issued by Langley shelter

Gateway of Hope offers homeless warm place to sleep

VIDEO: Autographs with Hockey Hall of Fame member, Marcel Dionne

Marcel Dionne, as well as other NHL greats, have arrived to the Langley Events Centre for the 2018 Legends Weekend

Giants serve up major defeat to Pats at Langley Events Centre

On the ice, Vancouver G-Men wrap up home stand with a 10-4 win over Regina Friday night.

Trudeau offers to help Pacific islands face climate change impact

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau met with the leaders from the Pacific island nations on Saturday during the APEC Summit in Papua New Guinea

Price makes 36 saves as Habs edge Canucks 3-2

Late goal lifts Montreal past Vancouver

BC Minister of Agriculture loses stepson to accidental overdose

Lana Popham announces death of her 23-year-old stepson, Dan Sealey

Canadian military’s template for perfect recruits outdated: Vance

Gen. Jonathan Vance, the chief of defence staff says that the military has to change because the very nature of warfare is changing, particularly when it comes to cyber-warfare

‘Toxic’ chosen as the Word of the Year by Oxford Dictionaries

Other top contenders for 2018 include ‘gaslighting’ and ‘techlash’

RCMP bust illegal B.C. cannabis lab

Marijuana may be legal but altering it using chemicals violates the Cannabis Act

1 woman dead, man in hospital after ‘suspicious’ crash: police

Homicide investigators and Burnaby RCMP are investigating the fatal collision

Canada defeats Germany 29-10 in repechage, moves step closer to Rugby World Cup

Hong Kong needs a bonus-point win over Canada — scoring four or more tries — while denying the Canadians a bonus point

Avalanche Canada in desperate need of funding

The organization provides avalanche forecasting for an area larger than the United Kingdom

Most Read