Hockey community rallies together for Iron Range player Katie Johnson
Katie Johnson turned 17 years old in the pediatric ICU in Duluth.
The Rock Ridge girls hockey player is dealing with serious spinal cord injuries from a crash last month involving a moose.
Now she and her family are at Craig Hospital in Colorado, which specializes in this care.
Meanwhile, her hockey family and the hockey community in general are rallying to support them.
“Katie’s a great player, a great defenseman. A great kid, always smiling. Works hard,” shared former coach and family friend Willie Spelts.
Even when things have been tough, she’s stayed positive.
Another family friend, Jeff Torrel, started leading a fundraiser for the Johnsons. He and a step-daughter and daughter went to visit Katie on Saturday.
“The positivity that comes out of that room is quite unbelievable. It gave us added motivation to get this done, and get fired up for Wednesday,” Torrel told us.
A Night for Katie will fill the Hippodrome in Eveleth on Wednesday. Along with three games, and activities involving the littlest players, there will be a silent auction and raffles.
Donations have been coming in from across the country.
All of this helps lift up the Johnsons, as they start a new chapter.
“They appreciate it so much. They feel every ounce of energy from everybody,” Spelts added.
A Night for Katie:
Benefit games, silent auctions, raffles, and more.