A harrowing stroll to assist out a promising younger athlete from Labrador has come to an in depth.
Sebastian Benuen, his grandson Aries, and a crowd of supporters reached their hometown of Sheshatshiu on Tuesday night, bringing an finish to a 330-kilometre trek alongside the Trans-Labrador Freeway from Churchill Falls.
They set out with the aim of elevating $50,000 for 14-year-old Aries to proceed his hockey dream at a non-public faculty in Ontario. After they reached dwelling, they’d smashed the aim and raised near $75,000.
“I did not suppose I used to be going to make it right here,” Sebastian instructed CBC’s Labrador Morning on Wednesday from his dwelling in Sheshatshiu. “I assumed I might should take one other evening between right here and Pleased Valley-Goose Bay however that did not occur. There was lots of people supporting me.”
Sebastian is a small enterprise proprietor who has been out of labor because the COVID-19 pandemic struck Newfoundland and Labrador in March. He wasn’t going to let that deter him from paying his grandson’s tuition and bills.
Aries is an athletic standout within the Innu neighborhood. He spent final hockey season on the Canadian Worldwide Hockey Academy in Rockland, Ont., and shall be returning there once more this season.
His grandparents took him in when he was a child and have made sacrifice after sacrifice to assist him attain his objectives. The household moved to Pleased Valley-Goose Bay so Aries may play hockey in a greater program.
Sebastian took it a step additional the subsequent 12 months and moved to Quebec so Aries may play AAA hockey in that province earlier than he was accepted to the Ontario faculty.
The Benuens and their supporters — a lot of them former teammates of Aries — made it to Pleased Valley-Goose Bay on Monday. On Tuesday, they had been joined by a ladies’ hockey workforce from Sheshatshiu for the ultimate leg of the journey.
Sebastian was handled for a knee harm on the again finish of the stroll, however was decided to make it to the end line.
He had problem expressing his feelings on Wednesday morning, moved by how far previous the fundraising aim they made it.
“I am overwhelmed,” he mentioned. “It is very, very laborious to clarify what I really feel right here this morning.”
Sebastian, an avid runner, mentioned he plans to take every week off his coaching earlier than operating once more.
His mission earned the approval of the Innu Nation in Labrador.
“The Innu Nation could be very proud of all of them and their efforts as a household to help each other,” it wrote on Twitter.
“Aries’ grandmother and grandfather took him in when he was little greater than a 12 months previous. That is household, that is love. The lengthy stroll is over, they’re dwelling.”