Winter was 15-year-old Jordan Fawcett’s favourite season. Every year, Jordan couldn’t wait to hit the slopes and participate in her favourite sport – skiing. She was an avid skier whose talent led her to compete for her high school at OFSAA in 2009. Tragically, Jordan’s life was cut short by Sudden, Unexpected and Unexplained Death in Epilepsy (SUDEP) on November 2, 2010.
“Jordan passed away only a year after she was diagnosed with epilepsy, and was considered extremely low risk for SUDEP,” said Jordan’s mother, Deb Fawcett. “SUDEP is still relatively unknown, so it’s very difficult to get funding for research. Our goal is to raise awareness and funds for SUDEP to help other families and kids like Jordan.”
On Friday, February 24, Deb and her husband Dave are hosting a ski event called Jordan’s Slide for SUDEP at the Beaver Valley Ski Club in Markdale in memory of their daughter. The event features skiing, snowboarding and snowshoeing, a buffet lunch, indoor activities, a silent auction, and an après ski social with a live band. Former Olympic and World Cup champion Todd Brooker will also be hosting a slalom race in memory of Jordan. Each ticket includes a lift pass, buffet lunch, t-shirt, and a donation to support SUDEP awareness and education work at The Hospital for Sick Children.
SUDEP occurs most often during sleep and there is no known cause. Lack of awareness makes it difficult to determine how many deaths occur as a result of SUDEP. Dr. Elizabeth Donner, a paediatric neurologist at SickKids, will be at the event to speak about epilepsy and explain our current understanding of SUDEP. Donner is a founder of SUDEP Aware, a Toronto-based organization that works to increase awareness and understanding of SUDEP.
“We are proud to celebrate and commemorate Jordan’s life through this event,” Deb said. “Jordan was always helping people, and we want to continue her legacy by helping other kids and families.”
To learn more about Jordan’s Slide for SUDEP, or to make a donation, please visit: www.sudepaware.org.