Doves of Hope

Alison’s Story

Alison was a ray of sunshine. She was the youngest with two older siblings, and she loved spending time with her family. Alison’s energy was endless, and she was one of those people who lit up a room and found themselves surrounded by others who want to be close to someone so full of joy.


Alison’s energy and cheerfulness were part of what made her so successful in her public relations career. She was outgoing and loved the challenge of connecting with people, and happily worked around the clock. With such a busy work life, her sister wasn’t surprised when Alison phoned and explained how tired she’d been feeling. But it wasn’t simply working too much – Alison could sleep for 10 hours and still feel tired. It just wasn’t like her.

She needed to see a doctor.

They ran a series of tests, and Alison’s doctor referred her to a gynecologist for a physical exam. It was after that exam that she got the scary news: She had cervical cancer.

Unfortunately, surgery wasn’t an option, so Alison was referred to The Princess Margaret. Alison’s treatment throughout the winter was successful. Her scans came back clear, and she headed back to work with as much gusto as ever – and now she had another mission: She never wanted anyone to feel like they were facing cancer alone. Using her public relations skills, Alison helped raise awareness for the Ride To Conquer Cancer in support of The Princess Margaret and was planning to participate in the event, when her greatest fear came true.

Her cancer was back. And this time, it was much worse.

“Once you have cancer and beat it,” Alison wrote in her blog, “your biggest fear every day is that the cancer will come back.”

Early on, it became clear that chemotherapy wasn’t impacting the tumour and her care team began looking at other options, including immunotherapy. But before that could happen, Alison suffered some complications and infections that caused damage to her bladder and colon, but they couldn’t be repaired. There wasn’t much more that could be done, and it was then that Alison asked her mom, “Can I come home?”

Through it all, Alison was still hopeful. She was fighting. She never let go of hope.

Alison had one strict rule for the family and friends that visited her in her final days: No crying around her bed. She was positive until the very end. That’s just who Alison was. She passed away on November 17, 2015.

Please join us to help carry Alison’s legacy forward with your gift to The Princess Margaret. Alison never wanted anyone to feel alone on their cancer journey, and with your gift, they won’t be.

“Thank you for the extra time we were able to share with her – and for the hope you will give others with your Doves of Hope gift this holiday season.” - Alison’s sister, Clarissa



Donate and dedicate your Dove today and Let Hope Fly

Your gift today is the gift of hope – it was for us, and now, it will be for others. Keep the journey going for others facing cancer – and those who love them.” - Alison’s sister, Clarissa