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Celebrating #WorldCancerDay With The FTEC2018 Fight Team

By January 30, 2018January 6th, 2022No Comments

6 - Photo - World Cancer Day2
Photo Description: (left to right) Robert Paniccia, Tyler SmithDawn Millar, Gavin Grant, Alison Turnbull, Rick DhillonChristina Vatsis, Sean LawlerHeather MacDonald, and Matthew Seahra. The team have set out to raise over $1 million dollars in support of cancer research by June 2, 2018. Learn how you can join them in their Fight To End Cancer. View FTEC2018 Fight Team.

A truly global event taking place every year on 4 February, World Cancer Day unites the world’s population in the fight against cancer.
It aims to save millions of preventable deaths each year by raising awareness and education about the disease, pressing governments and individuals across the world to take action.

Currently, 8.8 million people die from cancer worldwide every year, out of which, 4 million people die prematurely (aged 30 to 69 years).

Join us, as we celebrate World Cancer Day by reflecting on all stories behind why these ten heroes (the FTEC2018 Fight Team) are stepping into our ring.  They have dedicated their lives to donate hundreds of thousands of dollars that have been raised (collectively between them), in support of cancer research at the Princess Margaret Cancer Foundation.

Media Contact:
Jennifer Huggins
Founder, Executive Director
Phone: +1.416.666.9314
Email address:

Countless men and women have dedicated their lives to ending cancer. Let’s celebrate World Cancer Day, with the 2018 Fight To End Cancer Fight Team by taking a look at some of their incredible stories…

Scroll Down To Meet The 2018 Fight Team

Help the #FTEC2018 Fight Team reach their goal of $1 million dollars before Fight Night! Use the link below to get to know the individual team members better and support them in their Fight To End Cancer! Defeat Is NOT An Option
Sponsor A Fighter  Tickets & Event Info

Christina Vatsis vs. Heather MacDonald


Heather MacDonald endured the agony of watching her father endure a two-year battle with soft-tissue sarcoma, which ended with his untimely passing in 2009. Heather says her Dad fought harder than she knew was ‘humanly possible’.  Now it’s Heather’s turn to mirror her father’s strength and determination, as she steps into the ring as a 2018 FTEC fighter.
Christina Vatsis is no stranger to loss, or to the transformative power of giving back.  Christina lost her father to colon cancer in 2009, and witnessed her aunt’s intensive and debilitating treatments for breast cancer.   As a prolific volunteer, Christina has previously donated her time to an orphanage in Africa and raised funds for a number of important charitable causes.  Now, as an FTEC 2018 fighter, Christina will be channeling her talent toward her goal of raising funds for critical cancer research that might have helped save her Dad.    A veteran flight attendant, Christina prides herself on being courteous and polite.  She plans to maintain her signature smile with every punch that she lands on fight night.

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Matthew Seahra vs. Tyler Smith


Matthew Seahra joined FTEC 2018 to fight for those who cannot.  Having recently lost his uncle to brain cancer, Matthew wants to carry on the spirit of generosity which his uncle so embodied.  The self-proclaimed Beast Master of IT looks forward to the grueling training required of an FTEC fighter, and has set a personal goal of raising $15,000 for cancer research.
Tyler Smith comes from a family of fighters.  His grandfather dedicated his life to protecting others as a firefighter, and Tyler’s uncle is currently fighting an ongoing battle with cancer.  In pledging to be a 2018 FTEC Fighter, Tyler decided it was his turn to support to all those in need.   Tyler’s vision as a fighter is reflected in his own poignant call to arms:  “why are we all here if we can’t support and fight for each others’ right to have better lives?”

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Gavin Grant vs. Rick Dhillon


As a senior engineer specializing in high-tech environmental remediation, Gavin Grant is acutely aware of the power of research and technology.   Having watched and supported the Fight to End Cancer for several years, Gavin decided to join the FTEC 2018 team with the ambitious goal of personally raising $30,000 for critical cancer research.  In Gavin’s own words: it’s time to do the real work of helping to stop this disease.
Rick Dhillon is done with standing by and watching the havoc that cancer can bring.  In 2010, he witnessed his brother lose his speech, mobility and functioning as the result of a brain tumor.  Rick remembers feeling “utterly helpless” as he watched his bother’s suffering, and passing.  All he wanted to do then was find a way to help – and now he has found it.  Powerless no more, Rick is jumping into the ring as a 2018 FTEC fighter, to personally punch cancer in the face.

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Alison Turnbull vs. Dawn Millar


Every day Dawn Millar finds her motivation to train for FTEC 2018 in the eyes of her children.  Dawn’s father passed away due to cancer at the age of 51, just months before the birth of Dawn’s first child, who was his first grandchild.  Dawn felt like her life had ‘blown apart’ when she lost her Dad, but as an FTEC fighter she wants to prove that Defeat is Not an Option.
Like many of us, Alison Turnbull has been directly touched by cancer, losing her mother to the disease in 2016.  A veteran attendee of the annual Fight To End Cancer gala, Alison says she has motivated to become a fighter when she witnessed the level of commitment to training she saw in the FTEC team.  As the most recent member in a long line of fighters coming from Eagle Professional Resources, Alison was surprised to learn that scoring the W on fight night will be included on this year’s performance review.

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Sean Lawler vs. Rob Paniccia


Robert Paniccia knows he is among the fortunate ones whose health has not yet been directly affected by cancer. As a close supporter of previous FTEC fighters, Robert has enthusiastically joined the 2018 FTEC team to personally do his part to support the vital research of the doctors, chemists, and volunteers of The Princess Margaret Cancer Foundation.
Sean Lawler is a veteran lawyer who is used to courtroom battles, but as an FTEC 2018 fighter, he’s training for a far more personal fight. Sean has literally picked a fight with cancer, to honour his beloved mother who was swiftly and tragically taken by the disease in 2012.  Sean’s goal is to raise $20,000 for cancer research, to offer hope for other families, so that they don’t have to go through what his did.

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Media Contact:
Jennifer Huggins
Executive Director
Phone: +1.416.666.9314
Email address:
Important Dates:
–> Official Media Day: Thurs. May 24, 2018 6pm – 8pm | Lavelle Rooftop Lounge Request Media Access
–> 2018 Charity Boxing Gala: Sat. June 2, 2017 5pm – 11 pm | Old Mill Toronto Request Media Access