When the Olympic flame arrives in Chilliwack on Feb. 7, it will be proudly carried by Myles Mitchell, nominated as Chilliwack’s community torchbearer to light the celebration cauldron for the Vancouver 2010 Olympic Torch Relay.
To celebrate this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity, Chilliwack is planning a celebration that will take place that Sunday from 1-3 p.m. behind the Landing Leisure Centre. The event will feature top-notch entertainment that will highlight some of the great talent that Chilliwack has to offer.
Myles Mitchell is one of 12,000 Canadians chosen to carry the Olympic flame on the longest domestic torch relay in Olympic history. He will carry the torch on its final 300 metres to the stage and will light the 1.3 metre high celebration cauldron, in a move similar to the dramatic highlight of what will occur during the Opening Ceremonies for the Vancouver 2010 Olympic Winter Games.
The Games will bring together some of the greatest athletes in the world but they also help to create a feeling and a belief that anything is possible when you have a dream and work hard to realize it. Myles is a great example of someone who has done just that.
At the age of 10, his family began to notice that his hands would shake from time to time. The following year, the reason for the shaking became apparent as Myles was diagnosed with an inoperable brain tumor. He eventually graduated from Canuck Place Children’s Hospice, something that is truly impressive and in ways miraculous as most children die before getting that chance. He graduated from Sardis Senior Secondary and went on to attend UCFV. He took a Theatre history course, trying to find out what he might want to do with his life and ended up deciding to start his own business designing T-shirts.
Before starting the business he had a seizure and after a battery of tests it was determined that he had hydrocephalus which is sometimes known as water on the brain.
“The seizures weren’t causing the hydrocephalus and the hydrocephalus wasn’t causing the seizures but the tumor was causing both,” said his mother Debbie.
They inserted a permanent tube into Myles’ brain that drains into his stomach. Finally, after enduring a multitude of tests and treatments, Myles launched his company in May 2008. Now in his early twenties, Myles is working hard and is determined to live the best life that he can, against any and all odds.
“I’m ecstatic and proud to be carrying the torch,” he beamed!
If you’re planning on taking in the celebration, consider using the free shuttle service that will run from 11 a.m. until 6 p.m. between Chilliwack Heritage Park and the Landing Leisure Centre. There will be some traffic interruptions from Rosedale through the downtown corridor and around the celebration site as the convoy of vehicles makes its way to the final destination at the Landing. For specific shuttle information check out www.spiritofchilliwack.com
Following the lighting of the torch, everyone is invited to attend the 2010 Chilliwack Winter Party from 3-5 p.m. You can swim for free at the Leisure Centre, skate for free at the rink and at the Landing Sports Centre there’ll be free activities including face painting, children’s entertainment, crafts, bounce houses and complimentary coffee and hot chocolate while quantities last.