My name is Laurie, my daughter Kaitlyn lost her dad, Cory, on February 9th, 2017 after an extremely short and sudden battle with cancer at just 46 years old. Three weeks before her 18th birthday and only a few months away from her graduation, what should have been a happy time in our lives quickly became a nightmare leaving two entire families devastated. Cory worked hard his entire life to provide and comfortable life for his family. The economic hardship in the oilfield led to Cory being laid off from his job at a machine shop he'd worked at for 16 years shortly before he passed away. Due to the economy, our family has limited resources to pay for his funeral and those have now been exhausted so we are still unable to pay the remaining balance for Cory's headstone. It has been over seven months since we lost him and not having a proper place to sit with Cory to grieve has weighed deeply on everyone who loves him. My hope is to get some assistance for the $3039.50 left owing for his gravestone and to share their story. Not just one of tragedy and loss, but also of love, strength and courage. This is Cory and Kaitlyn's story.
In March 1999 after years of infertility treatment Kaitlyn was finally born and from that second Cory refused to leave her side following the nurses everywhere they took his baby. He was afraid they would mix her up or she could get stolen because she was so beautiful. Cory had the daughter he so desperately wanted and she became his entire world. Every second of his spare time for the rest of his life would be spent being a daddy. He would play barbies for hours or anything just to see his little girl smile. When she was 6 years old he took the day off work and drove to Calgary in order to purchase the very last princess television set in the province for her Christmas gift. Cory was not only a dedicated father, he was an amazing uncle to numerous nieces and nephews as well as a deeply loved brother, son, nephew, cousin, coworker and friend. He possessed a unique bond with animals and had a natural love for children that drew them to him like a magnet. And he loved it. His patience, compassion and sense of humour were his strongest traits. Cory was a strong, loyal man of his word with a laugh so infectious you could not help but be smiling if he was in the room. Cory loved the simple things in life such as time with family, a good meal or a night watching an Oilers game with his daughter. He was the happiest every Sunday preparing a special dinner before watching their favourite show, The Walking Dead. Being a dad was his life, the loss Kaitlyn and our family has suffered is life altering. Everyone of us carry a hole in our hearts that can never be filled.
The year before Cory passed away he lost both his Aunt and Uncle to cancer as well making numerous trips to Calgary to care for his gravely sick mother. She would sadly pass away not long after her son, on Easter Sunday. This family has suffered an unimaginable amount of loss in a very short period of time. When Cory was diagnosed with cancer it had already spread from his lung into the brain. We were told he had six weeks to live, however Cory passed away eight days later surrounded by his family and close friends. In the same hospital our daughter was born almost 18 years earlier just a few floors away. During that eight days Kaitlyn never left her dads side, she took care of his every need and comforted him. They both remained strong for each other as well as for the rest of the family. Neither of them stopped joking, laughing or smiling, there were nights I was sure we would be kicked out of the hospital from the amount of laughter coming from Cory's room. Kaitlyn has continued to smile despite losing the most important person in her life. She returned to school a few weeks after her dads passing and went on to graduate in June. Kaitlyn is now upgrading her marks with plans to go to college next year, that was her dads dream. The level of strength and resilience Kaitlyn has shown through her grief has been nothing short of inspiring. All I want is for her to continue to heal and live the life her dad wanted for her. None of us are able to move forward from our grief until Cory is laid to rest with the honour and respect he deserves. Thank you for taking the time to read their story and for any help offered towards making Corys headstone happen for our family.
- Brent Huculak
- Rosalee Courtoreille
- Chris Courtoreillle
- Kevin Kostiniuk
- Curtis B
Organizer and beneficiary