Community digs deep for Jacob Witzke


The latest fundraiser dinner for Jacob Witzke was a sold-out event.

The latest fundraiser dinner for Jacob Witzke was a sold-out event.

I have had the opportunity to be a part of a few fundraisers for nine-year-old Jacob Witzke and his family.

For those of you who don’t know Jacob, he is nine years old and in Grade 3 at Lakeview elementary school here in Quesnel.

He was an extremely healthy boy who came down with a virus which attacked his heart.

He was taken to B.C. Children’s Hospital where his heart stopped beating for four days.  He was placed on an ECMO machine, which served as his heart and lungs.

Jacob was awaiting a heart transplant, but miraculously his heart started beating again and he did not need the transplant.

He has undergone five heart surgeries and suffered two strokes, the last resulting in brain surgery.

It is a miracle Jacob is even alive. He is now in Sunny Hill Rehabilitation Center in Vancouver, where he is expected to be for the next eight months recovering.

Jacob is relearning basic things like moving his arms and legs, talking and even smiling.  The next big hurdle he will have to face will be to walk again.

I am truly humbled by Quesnel and their compassion for Jacob.  Maple Park Alliance Church and Northstar Church hosted a Spaghetti Dinner/Silent Auction.

It was held at Maple Park Alliance Church June 12 for the community to take part in to help the Witzke’s financially through this tough journey.  The tickets were sold out!

The support generated from the community and the businesses was overwhelming.  Even businesses that were not from Quesnel gladly donated items for our auction.

Finning in Prince George donated two Keith Urban Tickets!  Fabricland from Terrace donated items to be auctioned off, as well as Posh Nails and Designs in Williams Lake.  The businesses from Quesnel that donated items were Carters Jewellers, Godsoe Logging, Bo Peep Boutique, Motherlode Wash, Cariboo Peat and Gravel, Matrix Research Ltd., Walmart Associates, Safeway, Quesnel Bakery, Big Country Printers, JD Meats, Save-on Foods, Boston Pizza, Brodex, Healthy Transformations Fitness Training, Joyful Expressions, City Furniture, Ricki’s/Bootlegger, Ma-n-kin Dolls, Co-Op, Dana Bouchard/Partylite, The Source, Brandt Tractor, Rona, Franks Supermarket, Canadian Tire, Zapper Contracting, Staples, Inland Kenworth, Make Traxx Recreation (Polaris), Outback, Outlaw, Rydel Trucking, Sears, Cariboo Ford, A Page in Time, Attitude South, Steeped, Motherlode Quick Lube, 10 Mile Lake Nursery, Circle S Western Wear, Marks Work Wear World, Cyn Cyr Photography, The Breeze, Dew Drops and Daisy Doula Services, Granvilles, Warehouse One, Mr.Mikes, BB Rox, D.A.M. Repairs, Good For You and Planet 2, S.F. Young Photography, The Finishing Touch, MacDonald’s, Fountain Tire, Active Rent All, North Cariboo Christian School, Gold’s Gym, Keen’s Sports, Tre Spa, Curves, Hollywood Video and Our Little Sweet Pea.

It was so wonderful to see Quesnel pull together for members of their community when they needed it the most.

I am blessed to have witnessed this first hand, and I am truly thankful to live in Quesnel.

Thank you to everyone that supported any or all fundraisers that have been going on in little nine-year-old Jacob’s name.  And a special thank you to all the volunteers of these fundraisers.

If you haven’t been able to attend any of the fundraisers, you may still make a donation to the Witzke’s at the Quesnel RCMP detachment.  You may also continue following Jacob’s story at a blog that a family friend had started.

Thank you Quesnel for your love and compassion.

Brenda Ferreira



Quesnel Cariboo Observer