Varsity football players rally around coach, raise money through gofundme

When coach Douglas Wilson first learned he had cancer of the esophagus, he knew he was in for a fight. Esophageal cancer is very hard to beat. It is the sixth most common cause of cancer deaths worldwide. In response to their coach’s diagnosis, seniors Tripp Graham and Blake Webster created a gofundme account to help Wilson and his family.

“I thought it was pretty cool that they would do that for me,” Wilson said. “I truly love both of these young men and appreciate what they did for me. It has been truly humbling that two players would start it for me and how many people in this community have shown appreciation and generosity to my family and me. We feel like it has been a blessing to be a part of this school and community.”

At press time, the amount raised was $21,982. Graham encourages people to donate as much as they can to help to #wilsonstrong.

“By donating even the slightest amount, it is helping out an incredible family who deserves more than I could ever express,” Graham said.  “He has instilled the morals that Westlake football is about — hard work, integrity and respect. The lessons he has taught young men who are going off to college has helped shape some great people. I’m not sure we can ever repay him for that, but this gofundme can help.”

Wilson’s determination to fight has impacted Graham.

“It has taught me to never give up and to keep fighting no matter the circumstances,” Graham said. “To not let anything get in the way of the people you love and care about.”

One of the biggest side-effects of treatment is fatigue, so getting up the energy to come to school has been difficult at times, but Wilson tries to coach as much as possible.

“My situation is getting better, and I will continue to fight until they tell me that I am cancer free,” Wilson said. “The gofundme account is a blessing for us and is appreciated more than I can express.

You can help by donating here.