Boy's legacy honored through hockey

Quinn Kirsch was just 8 years old when he lost his life to Myocarditis, a disease that often strikes young people who are otherwise healthy. However, anyone may be susceptible to the disease.

After losing Quinn, one community, and one hockey coach starting working to change that.

Quinn's parents, Kelly and Kyle Kirsch say there were few things Quinn loved more than playing hockey. So they, along with more than 400 skaters at Centennial Lake Park in Edina turned out to honor Quinn, who would have turned 11 this week.

It is called "The Quinn Cup" and it is now in its second year.

"A lot of people said, ‘do you really want to do this the week you son passed away?' We said, of course, because it's a great distractor and helps us think about something fun like have the little kids out here playing hockey," said Kyle Kirsch.  

The Cup features youngsters, categorized as mites or squirts, playing two four-on-four games.

"All his friends are here, kids from his school, they all love it," added Kelly Kirsch.

It was just one month shy of his 9th birthday that Myocarditis attacked Quinn's heart, suddenly taking his life. It was his hockey coach, Clayton Weiby, who decided a hockey tournament would be a great way to honor the young boy who touched so many.

The tournament benefits the Myocarditis Foundation.

"After everything, last year we raised $14,000 for the Myocarditis Foundation. We're hoping to raise a bit more this year," said Kelly Kirsch.

Myocarditis is an illness characterized by the inflammation of the Myocardium, the muscle layer of the heart. It often goes undiagnosed and can rapidly progress to heart failure.

"Ultimately the money goes to an organization that's trying to help people make sure they don't go through what we're going through, said Kyle Kirsch.

Another young man from Edina was remembered at the event. 14-year-old Timothy Nunn who, also died of Myocarditis in 2009, while he was hiking with his Boy Scout Troop in New Mexico.

This year the Quinn Cup raised $15,000. For more information about the Myocarditis Foundation click here.

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