Stroke Survivor Riley Dunda Celebrates Completion of #FightRileyFight Campaign

HAMILTON, ON: Hamilton General Hospital Foundation, along with former Hamilton Red Wings player Riley Dunda, his family, and teams at Hamilton General Hospital and the Regional Rehabilitation Centre, celebrated the hospital equipment acquisitions made possible by proceeds from the #FightRileyFight campaign.

Dr. Brian van Adel, Richard Dunda, Linda Dunda, Riley Dunda and Dr. Wes Oczkowski

Riley Dunda suffered a major stroke just shy of his 19th birthday in May 2014. After being transferred to Hamilton General Hospital from West Lincoln Memorial Hospital, Riley underwent a specialized clot retrieval procedure that saved his life. Riley celebrated his 19th birthday by kicking off #FightRileyFight, a campaign to raise funds in support of the health care teams that treated him.

The campaign raised nearly $65,000, which helped support the purchase of a much-needed neurointerventional simulator and coiling module. This innovative equipment will enable stroke fellows and other neurointerventionalists to train for clot removal procedures, such as the one that saved Riley’s life. An ischemic stroke occurs when a clot or blockage is formed in an artery to the brain. A clot removal procedure eliminates the obstruction, which enables blood flow through the artery.

In addition, a penumbra pump (a suction system that removes clots from tissues) was also purchased for Hamilton General Hospital, while a tono pen (which tests fluid pressure in the eye) was purchased for the emergency department at West Lincoln Memorial Hospital.

“The road to my recovery has been challenging, but I’m thankful for the health care teams that have been there through every step of the journey,” says Riley. “It makes me happy to know that the new equipment will help more patients like me.”

As hospital equipment is not funded by the government, the Foundation is grateful for donors like the Dunda family and all of the individuals who supported the #FightRileyFight campaign who enable essential equipment purchases for Hamilton General Hospital, home to the largest Integrated Stroke Program in the province.

“Riley’s inspiring journey has touched the hearts of many,” says Pearl Veenema, President and CEO, Hamilton Health Sciences Foundation. “The generosity of the Dunda family and their network is helping to enhance the specialized stroke and neurosurgical care that is provided to patients across the region at Hamilton General Hospital.”


About Hamilton General Hospital Foundation:

Hamilton General Hospital Foundation, as part of Hamilton Health Sciences Foundation, is focused on raising funds in support of Hamilton General Hospital, the Regional Rehabilitation Centre and their programs. The Foundation provides funding for leading-edge equipment and patient amenities, innovative research initiatives, redevelopment of patient care spaces, and the education and training of health care providers.

Hamilton General Hospital Foundation supports specialized cardiac and vascular care, trauma and burn treatment, stroke and neurosciences, and rehabilitation programs. The site is home to Ontario’s highest volume cardiac surgical centre and integrated stroke program. It is also one of only two adult regional burn centres in the province, and it houses an intensive rehabilitation centre for patients recovering from stroke, acquired brain injury, amputation or spinal cord injury.  The Foundation is focused on enabling outstanding patient care through its goal of Health Care, Transformed.

Media Contact:

Aaron Lam
Marketing and Communications Officer
Hamilton Health Sciences Foundation
905-521-2100 ext. 42732