Remembering the Life and Legend of our dear friend, Faisel.
"How can I help with the Lottery?" No matter what he was going through, Faisel Shariff was always helping.
For the past ten years, Faisel volunteered tirelessly to help the Cash and Cars Lottery successfully raise critical funds for Alberta’s 17 cancer centres.
His mission started in December 2009, when he was diagnosed with Ewings Sarcoma, a childhood cancer that showed up in his right ankle.
After a below-the-knee right leg amputation and a year of aggressive chemotherapy, Faisel had already gone through all treatment options available to him. He was told there was no treatment available if the cancer came back.
Faisel was cancer-free for 18 months when a soft-tissue tumour was detected on his sternum. Thanks to a recent clinical trial, funded in part by the Alberta Cancer Foundation, Faisel had a new set of options— surgery, radiation, and chemotherapy. It was an aggressive regimen but you would never know it to talk to him.
"I believe sharing my story with people shows that we will make a difference," he said. "Any time they need a hand, I’ll be there for them."
Faisel faced cancer five times. He inspired everyone around him with his unstoppable outlook on life. Enduring multiple recurrences, Faisel celebrated incredible life moments. He married his beautiful bride, Aliya, in 2015. In February, they welcomed Rumi into the world. He was eager to meet his dad, arriving five weeks ahead of schedule.
It is with the heaviest of hearts that we said goodbye to Faisel in March. More moments were made possible for him thanks to Albertans like you. He was a beacon of the progress made over the past decade but his passing is a tearful reminder of the work we still have ahead.