Petrolia’s minor hockey community is in mourning in the wake of the death of Leanne Lypko.
The minor hockey family rallied around Lypko this winter as she battled an aggressive form of cancer.
In a matter of days, an online campaign raised tens of thousands of dollars to help the family make ends meet. But Nick Salaris, who started the online campaign and is the president of Petrolia Minor Hockey, says it quickly became a community effort. “It started out with the hockey community, but it branched out into so much more; all sports groups helped and people in the general community,” he says. There were donations from ball teams, fire departments and golf tournaments during the campaign.
And Salaris says people helped out with practical things such as making meals and building a wheelchair ramp to help Lypko get into her home.
“We respected their privacy but they welcomed having their friends around
… and involved, helping them out with simple things getting them groceries, getting them meals, getting the boys to their activities.”
Salaris visited with the family and Leanne at St. Joseph’s Hospice the Sunday before she passed away. “Leanne was a pretty tough lady. She surprised a lot of people with how long she was able to fight.” Her obituary paid tribute to her spirit. “Cancer has taken a dedicated and courageous
hockey mom, and her dedication to her family and involvement with the community she loved will never be forgotten.”
Lypko was 48.
Visitation at Needham-Jay Funeral Home is Friday from 6-9 pm and a celebration of life will be held Saturday at 11 am