Windsor community helping student get therapy dog - WFSB 3 Connecticut

Windsor community helping student get therapy dog

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Hailey Giguere was surrounded by friends at school wearing T-shirts of support on Wednesday. (WFSB) Hailey Giguere was surrounded by friends at school wearing T-shirts of support on Wednesday. (WFSB)
WINDSOR, CT (WFSB) -

The community is trying to help one student at Windsor High School get a therapy dog that would completely change her life. 

Hailey Giguere is like any Windsor High School senior, who's ready for college, but at 17-years-old, she's also a long-time survivor.

Giguere was diagnosed with a brain tumor when she was a baby and has had five brain surgeries.

"My third brain surgery resulted in the paralysis of my right side,” Giguere said. “So I've had balance issues, strength issues, stamina and issues all that fun stuff."

Surrounded by friends at school wearing T-shirts of support on Wednesday, Giguere said she's actually quite lucky because it's a low-grade tumor.

"It hasn't totally been removed and unfortunately, it cannot be operated on anymore because the last surgery they had to replace a skin graft on my neck and the surgeon said that it probably shouldn't be opened,” Giguere said.

"She's definitely a strong person because a lot of things challenge her in life, so she has to work harder than a lot of other people,” Zachary Giguere, who is Hailey's brother, said.

Her younger brother said he worries every day and the same can be said about her friends, who even created a GoFundMe page.

They want to raise $25,000 for a therapy dog for people with disabilities such as Giguere.

Last year, they successfully held a soccer fundraiser and another one is planned for this May. But, they still need a lot of money to change Giguere's life.  

"It's just amazing how much courage and how she's just happy every day,” Tristan Kijak, who is the Hailey's friend, said. “I've never seen her upset when anything has gone wrong and I just really admire her character."

"They do a lot of positive things and it's really great to see them get recognized for it,” Windsor High School teacher Michael Clarke said.

Clarke said he is hoping the community rallies around Giguere to reach their goal.

Giguere said the "help would be amazing." 

For more information on the upcoming soccer benefit, click here.

To donate to the GoFundMe page,  click here

To learn more about Giguere, click here

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