Emotions ran high two years ago at Canada’s Walk of Fame, when Ryan Reynolds rushed the stage to greet a young girl named Grace Bowen and her hockey hero Olympian Hayley Wickenheiser.
A year later, Grace lost her battle to Osteosarcoma at the age of nine and without knowing it, inspired the Hollywood A-lister to get involved and team up with Toronto’s SickKids Hospital for a new powerful campaign. Watch a little bit of her story below.
“Like a lot of people who met Grace Bowen, I fell in love with [her],” Reynolds tells ET Canada’s Cheryl Hickey about the pair’s chance meeting in 2014.
“I just saw how what she was going through affected everyone around her and how inspiring she was for everyone else,” the actor adds.
“Grace was kind of a catalyst for me because I had no idea, but I was about to start working on ‘Deadpool’, which is about a man with cancer,” he shares adding “and suddenly all these kids were reaching out to me who looked up to this character.”
Despite his hectic schedule, Reynolds personally reached out to the foundation and flew himself to Toronto to support their efforts and star in a new spot in their SickKids VS campaign.
“You see these guys and you start to realize how privileged you are,” Reynolds shares with Cheryl Hickey, adding, “I want to do everything I can to help families going through this.”
“It’s amazing what one kid can do.”
Look out for Ryan Reynolds’ PSA in the coming months and if you’d like to support SickKids, go to their website fundthefight.ca.