Vancouver minor hockey coach Stephen Gillis. (THE CANADIAN PRESS/HO, Lindsay Kelly)

B.C. hockey coach to get kidney after peewee team’s video search

Stephen Gillis has suffered from Crohn’s disease since he was 25 years old

The coach of a Vancouver peewee hockey team says his search for a life-saving organ donor has been successful.

Stephen Gillis has posted a video on his Twitter and Facebook accounts, showing the moment a friend confirms he is a perfect match and will donate a kidney to the longtime minor hockey coach.

READ MORE: Canada shows support for Green Shirt Day, Humboldt Bronco organ donor

Gillis says he wanted to make the announcement on Green Shirt Day, an event created by the parents of the late Humboldt Broncos player Logan Boulet, whose donated organs saved six other lives.

In the post, Gillis tearfully embraces Michael Teigen, who learned of Gillis’ plight and took the steps to determine his kidney would be a match.

Gillis’ peewee team launched a video search for a living kidney donor after being told their coach’s battle with Crohn’s disease had caused his kidneys to shut down.

The video by the 11- and 12-year-old players racked up thousands of views and gained national attention.

Gillis says he is “still trying to process (Teigen’s) selflessness and generosity.”

“I am hoping now we can use this story to sign up people to become organ (donors) and save the lives of others,” he says in an email.

He has suffered from Crohn’s disease since the age of 25 but led a very active lifestyle until last summer when he said he started “feeling a bit weird,” and doctors gave him a troubling diagnosis.

“They let me know that my blood was basically vinegar and that it wasn’t being cleaned for a while,” he said in an interview in January.

Since then, Gillis has required dialysis to clean his blood and also underwent major surgery to have his diseased colon removed.

It was during his recovery from that surgery that he received the visit from Teigen and learned of the upcoming donation.

The Canadian Press

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

South Lakeside residents to be reimbursed for 2020 parcel tax payments

Council determined residents fulfilled the commitment of 20 payments for water, sewer hook up

B.C. First Nation breaks ground on $4.5 million gas bar in the Chilcotin

Chilcotin River Trading at Tl’etinqox will feature a grocery store, café and more

City of Williams Lake continues to chip away at debt load

In five years the total owing has been reduced from $14.1 million to $9.3 million

City overcharged South Lakeside residents on water and sewer tax, says Judy Albin

City staff are seeking direction from city council on how to proceed at Tuesday meeting

Witnesses sought in Quesnel River Bridge hit and run

The damage to the bridge is estimated to be over $30,000

Recent surge in COVID-19 cases not unexpected amid Phase Three of reopening: B.C.’s top doc

Keep circles small, wear masks and be aware of symptoms, Dr. Bonnie Henry says

NDP wants Lower Mainland MLA removed from BC Liberal caucus for alleged homophobia

BC Liberal leader, some MLAs apologize for Christian magazine ads but Laurie Throness doubles down

B.C. health officials pleased with likely extension of Canada-U.S. border closure

Health Minister Adrian Dix says the situation is ‘very serious in the United States’

Children suffer swollen eyes, burns while playing at Lower Mainland spray park

Mission RCMP are investigating incident that injured several children

B.C. NDP changing WorkSafeBC regulations to respond to COVID-19

Employers say reclassifying coronavirus could be ‘ruinous’

Baby raccoon rescued from 10-foot deep drainage pipe on Vancouver Island

‘Its cries were loud, pitiful and heartbreaking,’ Saanich animal control officer says

Statistical flaws led to B.C. wolf cull which didn’t save endangered caribou as estimated

Study finds statistical flaws in an influential 2019 report supporting a wolf cull

Windows broken, racist graffiti left on Okanagan home

Family says nothing like this has happened since they moved to Summerland in 1980s

B.C. man who went by ‘Doctor Ray Gaglardi’ charged with sex assault of teenage boys

The man, 75, is accused of assaulting teenage boys he met through Coquitlam-area churches

Most Read