One of the great joys of the Once fandom is the incredible generosity of the fans. This year at FT4 traditional gifts could not be given to the stars, but that didn't stop Oncers from showing their appreciation in other ways. One such fan, Tracy Paquereau (@colinod_crew), raised money for the Gary Kelly Cancer Support Centre as a gift to Colin O'Donoghue. Teresa Martin spoke with her about her very special gift.
What made you become a fan of OUAT?
Who doesn't love Fairy Tales? That's why I've started to watch Once Upon A Time and I instantly fell in love with the show. Making our favorite fairy tale characters live in a town that only exists because of the Evil Queen's curse was a brilliant idea. Emma's storyline touched me and then Captain Hook appeared . . . Thanks to Colin and his character I became even more a huge fan of the show than I already was. I love the development of Killian through the seasons and Colin is an outstanding actor.
Tell me about how you started to attend Xivents and why do you return?
I can't remember how I heard about Xivents' first OUAT convention, but I went to all the Fairy Tales. I decided to go to the Fairy Tales 1 because of Emilie De Ravin. I've liked her for a long time. But even if she was finally unable to come, it was a lot of fun. All the actors are lovely and I've met some great people. Meeting the stars of your favorite show and the fans is an amazing experience. That's why I return. But let's be honest, Colin was my main reason to go to the FT3 and FT4 :)
What gave you the idea for raising money for the charity?
This year we weren't allowed to give presents to the actors at the con because Lana always receives lots of gifts and to be equal to every guest this rule applied to all. At the same time, Xivents said if we wanted to do something that would go right to her heart, we could donate to a charity she supports. It gave me the idea to raise funds for a charity Colin supports.
What was the process?
After Xivents announced that Colin would attend FT4, I started to search all the charities he supports. I chose the Gary Kelly Cancer Support Centre among all of them because cancer took the life of someone I love and it was important for me to do this also for a cause that is close to my heart. Then I started the fundraising on Le Pot Commun on March 18, and I tried to spread the word as much as possible. A lot of fans of Colin and/or OUAT shared and donated. The deadline was June 5 and we reached 1670€. A few days before the convention I sent the money to the charity via Paypal. They made a post about it on their facebook.
How did you tell Colin about the fundraising?
I showed Colin a message from the charity that explains everything about the fundraising. He seemed very surprised, happy, grateful and touched. He said it was a wonderful gift. I will never forget Colin rising up from his chair (before saying a word) for a hug above the table. Such a beautiful moment. Moreover, I was able to give him the card with the name of everyone who donated and the messages that some of them sent to me for Colin. Then we took a picture with a message written on a poster I made. You can see on the photo how happy he was :) After the pic he took me again in his arms while saying it's a wonderful gift.
Anything else you would like to share?
I just want to thank everyone who donated and/or shared the project. I didn't expect this project to be such a success so thanks a million from the bottom of my heart. Know that the charity is also extremely grateful. And a very special thank you to Xivents for their help and for allowing me to take a pic during the autographs.
Learn more about the Gary Kelly Cancer Support Centre: