Winnipeg woman with terminal brain cancer overwhelmed by Tragically Hip ticket offers

A Winnipeg woman with the same kind of terminal brain cancer as the Tragically Hip’s Gord Downie has been flooded with offers from people across Canada wanting to give her their tickets after she originally couldn’t get tickets to their Winnipeg show.

Joanne Schiewe among hundreds of fans who couldn't get tickets to Winnipeg show - til now

RAW: Joanne Schiewe overwhelmed by messages of support, and offers of Tragically Hip tickets

CBC News: Winnipeg at 6:00

5 years ago
Winnipeg woman living with terminal brain cancer says she's overwhelmed by the messages of support she has received from people across Canada. 1:23

A Winnipeg woman with the same kind of terminal brain cancer as the Tragically Hip's Gord Downie has been flooded with offers from people across Canada wanting to give her their tickets after she couldn't get tickets to the Hip's Winnipeg show.

Joanne Schiewe spent last week trying to land tickets online to the group's concert in August but was unsuccessful.

She was one of hundreds who were outspoken in their frustration.

But since then, she has received a flood of support and offers of tickets from Canadians and Tragically Hip fans.

"I've had messages through Twitter, Facebook, emails, people reaching out in a variety of ways and it's pretty amazing," said Schiewe.

"Every time one would pop up I'd get this look on my face and I would just start crying ... the first couple I received where people were offering the tickets, I was just shaking my head," she said.

"I don't understand this. I never expected in a million years for people to do that."
Joanne Schiewe, a huge Tragically Hip fan living with the same kind of terminal cancer as Gord Downie, is 'overwhelmed' by ticket offers from Canadians after she couldn't get tickets to the show

Offers from people saying "take mine" have ranged from a woman in Winnipeg who had never been to a Tragically Hip show before but emailed the Winnipeg woman saying she believed "in [her] heart, Schiewe deserves to go," to a man in Halifax who was traveling with his family to Winnipeg for the concert and insisted Schiewe take his spot with them instead, as well as dozens of other offers from complete strangers.

Ultimately, it was a friend of Schiewe's who secured her a pair of seats to the show. Schiewe says she's overwhelmed.

"So, yeah, pretty excited!" she said, laughing. As a self-proclaimed "huge Hip fan," the final tour has extra meaning to Schiewe, as she, like the group's lead singer, is living with glioblastoma. Schiewe has been given just over a year and a half to live, which will be up right around the date of the concert, August 5.

"I can't wait to see everyone's reaction to seeing him up on stage. Just because he has this terminal diagnosis. Just the fact he's doing these shows and doing what he does best and being around the fans. It'll be really special to witness that," she said.

She says she's made peace with her own terminal diagnosis, but the recent outpouring of support has renewed her resolve. 

"To still have people saying, 'You've got this, you're going to continue on, and thank you for doing what you're doing because we can see that people can still lead normal lives even with this bad diagnosis,'" she said.

Schiewe has raised thousands of dollars for brain cancer research and continues to swim, bike and run competitively to fundraise.

"It just goes to show that Canadians and Tragically Hip fans are a pretty special breed. Nowhere else in the world would people do this."

She wants to give a heart-felt 'thank you' to everyone who has taken the time to reach out to her.

"It's things like this when I'm not feeling well and I can't get out of bed, I look at messages like this it makes me OK. There's people out there who care and I just need to get on and show people that I can get on and I can live... live my life."