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HUNTSVILLE, Ala. – The Huntsville Havoc hockey organization raises hundreds of thousands of dollars for local charities every season. They do it by wearing special jerseys during the year. When players hit the ice January 15th, they’ll be wearing a different uniform for St. Jude night.

Nobody is more excited about the game than 7-year-old Olivia Noland of Muscle Shoals. “I’m super-duper excited,” she told me while sitting on the Havoc bench at the VBC Propst Arena. She drew the wolf that’s on the front of the jerseys this year.

“I just like drawing pictures,” she told me while looking at her artwork on the front of a game jersey, “I did my best.” The jerseys also have the names of patients and staff from the St. Jude Affiliate Clinic at Huntsville Hospital for Women and Children.

“Found it,” Olivia said with excitement. Her mom Kristy smiled and said, “Right there in the middle.” Olivia’s name is on the jersey too. In June of 2020, she was diagnosed with acute lymphoblastic leukemia, or ALL.

“It’s kind of a hard thing to hear because it was totally out of the blue, but Huntsville admitted us that night and put us on an ambulance in a couple of days to Memphis,” her mom told me. Olivia spent the next four months undergoing treatment at the St. Jude campus in Memphis, Tennessee.

They came home and now make weekly trips to the St. Jude clinic in Huntsville. Olivia will do chemo treatments for 120 weeks. She just finished number 60. “We are half-way through her maintenance type therapy, so she’s considered in remission,” Kristy Noland told me. She continued, “They turned us over to the affiliate and we’ll do the two years of chemo and then they’ll follow her through the St. Jude program for several years to just assure that everything continues to test normally but so far, we’ve gotten good reports.”

Just like some hockey players, Olivia’s a fighter. “She has really just taken it in stride. I mean, they caught it early and she responded right away to the treatment that they started so we were very fortunate that everything moved so quickly,” Kristy said.

Olivia drew the wolf during one of her visits to the Huntsville clinic last October. She had no idea it would be selected to be on the front of this year’s jersey for St. Jude Night with the Havoc. “That’s cool,” she said with a big smile. What’s even cooler is seeing the happiness it brings to a St. Jude kid.

Havoc players will auction off their jerseys Saturday night after the game, January 15th. The money raised will help kids battling cancer at St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital.