Odessa Amirault's Fundraising Page

Well Dressed for Spring 2024

I'm fundraising for...

On March 27, 2024, I will be walking the runway at Well Dressed for Spring in support of Wellspring Cancer Support Foundation at Yorkville Village.

This event will help raise funds for the cancer support programs and services that Wellspring provides, at no cost, to individuals and families living with cancer. Please help me reach my fundraising goal, so that together we can make a difference in the lives of Wellspring members.

Thank you for your generous support!

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My Updates

Mind Over Matter

Wednesday 14th Feb
It was the new millennium. The year was 2000 and my world was about to crash. At 24 years old and just two credits short of my Fine Arts degree from Dalhousie, I had only recently moved to Toronto on contract with a modelling agency and I was just starting up the ladder of success as a career haute couture and runway fashion model flying to photo shoots in the Caribbean and Miami. I had calls from L.A. and from Milan but I was too naive and too scared to go - all of a sudden I got very sick and everything changed when I was told I had the most deadly and aggressive of brain cancers, Glioblastoma Multiform. Less than 5% survive even for five years and they told me I had only months to live. Yes devastating. 

I was lucky to have a loving family and a whole village behind me. That was 23 years ago and now I am returning to the fashion runway once again to tell my story and to share my journey - please help me raise money for cancer treatment and support. This is my story…

I am a very positive person naturally and that has made all the difference. Mind over matter” is my personal mantra and it goes to the core of my belief system. Let me tell you how I survived the unsurvivable…

I had an amazing medical team at Princess Margaret Hospital. The Brain Cancer Clinic is way up on the 18th Floor and it is very nicely laid out it kind of looks like a hotel lobby. Very comforting thanks to the donors who cared so much. I went though 35 sessions of radiation which is the maximum allowed. The same for chemotherapy another 35 sessions. Finally they opted for a full craniotomy and resection to remove as much cancer as possible. It didn’t work. There was still too much at work. I was young and so they decided I could tolerate a second brain surgery. I looked like the a Ninja Turtle with a giant bandage on my head. I was MODEL - I would not  let anyone take pictures of me like that but I regret that now. The second surgery they used photodynamics which is a fluid like Coca Cola they injected into my brain that illuminates the cancer cells under special light. After the second resection they were worried my brain may cave in for a while so I had to be careful. I still go to Princess Margaret every year and do an MRI and every year they say the same miraculous beautiful words - “clear and stable”. It is a relief every time. 

But I would never have even gotten to the hospital in time if it weren’t for my mother and dad. My mom heard me sick on the phone and she knew something was wrong so she got on a plane and brought me in herself and that’s when we got the devastating news. My Aunt and one of my closest cousins also flew to Toronto to be with me. In fact I have a whole village behind me. 

I was adopted by two loving amazing parents from a tiny coastal fishing village in Yarmouth County on the very southern tip of Nova Scotia. Pubnico where I come from is only about 2000 people but it is the longest continuously inhabited community by the founding families in North America. Most of these families have been here since 1653 straight from Paris. Now Pubnico is the richest wharf for cash haul in North America. My family are lobstermen and boat builders except my poor dad who gets so sea sick so he drove truck delivering lobster and other goods across the eastern seaboard. I used to love it when my dad took me on some of his trips. He knew everyone. He talks a lot. I love you dad. 

My mom is the most loving generous woman you could meet. She has been an anchor in our church choir for as long as I can remember. Make no mistake…she is a force if you get in her way and she moved heaven and Earth to help me. It was expensive. My parents mortgaged their house and sold some prized possessions. My village had several big fundraisers and I also had a very well known and very expensive naturopath (also an MD in the US). I took so many pills I can’t even begin to count. I had a VERY restrictive diet. For years I worked at my recovery. 

After the cancer treatment they waited until a second MRI before telling me I was clear - I think they couldn’t believe it themselves. In 2002 Pope John Paul II came to Toronto for only the second time for World Youth Day and at the end of the ceremony I was brought before the Pope and he blessed me. He looked a lot like my grandmother I remember. I also got asked to enter the Miss Toronto pageant and I ended up winning that so I was Miss Toronto that year too. I really like to talk to cancer patients and share my personal message of hope and positivity. 

After cancer I got some social worker and job placement help getting new work. I couldn’t really model as a professional anymore. They found me a spot at an upscale retail fashion store on Bloor. I can’t do cash and I forget things but I was great with customers and I loved being in fashion and around people. I used to ski and dance and party a lot before cancer but afterwards I lost my balance and I have serious seizures which are well controlled with medication. My memory is pretty well shot. The scarring and the parts of my brain that were removed also affects speech and I often can’t recognize objects right in front of me. I have had some bad falls. It’s not so bad really at all though and I am grateful to be alive each day. 

I work around these things with my partner who is also a brain injury survivor. Phil was a rescue aviator in the Royal Canadian Air Force and got injured during the First Gulf War and some other missions. We are inseparable now and we each help balance the other one’s deficits. 

There is so much more I could share and I hope you will join me and these other amazing women and supporting spouses and families. 

Cancer can be beat. Every single kind. I’m proof of that. Never give up never quit and live in gratitude every single day upon this Earth each day is precious and so are all of you. Thank you for the kind support and for adding your positivity. 

Thank you to my Sponsors


Mary And Stan Neal


Shawn And Shelley D’entremont


James E D'entremont Boat Builders Ltd


Jmj Fisheries Ltd.


Gilles Amirault


Richard D'entremont


John And Janet Bradford

A beautiful young woman with a soul of an angel and the soulmate of my Nephew: the two of them are an example to the world that perseverance and love prevail always.


Rosanne & Aubrey


Clara Dugas

The best of luck with this great project Odessa.



Thanks for doing this, Odessa! From Vernon d'Eon


Bev Stewart

Your Positive Attitude is an Inspiration Odessa!


Gerene Dentremont Odell

What a wonderfool way to remember all who have strugled with cancer.


Craig And Olga D'entremont

A very worthy cause. Best of luck in reaching your goal. Take care, Olga and Craig d'Entremont


Gwen D'entremont

Congrats Dess,so proud of you !🥰


Norma Amirault

Extraordinary achievement


Theresa (tress)

Wishing for you, all things good! Love and hugs. Tress


Ena Leblanc


Carol Ann Dentremont


Raylene O’connell


Cory D'eon


Philip Brooks

I’m so proud of you sweetheart ❤️


Mindy And Tante Lorraine

We are so proud of you Odessa! Love you!


Rene D'entremont

You will be great my friend!


Donna D’



Remember you since you were two years old at the “Adopted Kids Birthday Party “ for Nicole🐸❤️


Beverly D’entremont

Good luck Odessa.


Gloria D’eon



You are A wonderful inspiration for everyone.


Tammy Amirault Macdonald

You're a true inspiration, Odessa! 💕


Michelle Parry

You are amazing


Harland Amirault


Brenda S

Best of luck!❤️


Shelley Bf

Odessa: You are a shining light of Hope! Blessings, Shelley


Warren Amirault & Wanda Amirault

Oncle Warren & Wanda


Bev Freedman

You arexalways so positive


Jolene Deon




Rolande D'entremont