Washburn Rally Behind Teammate And His Family

Castle Guards Rallied Around Cody Christenson After Brother's Passing

When sophomore Cody Christenson’s family fell on hard times, the team was there to support him.

Cody’s younger brother Judah was diagnosed two-years ago with a stage four brain tumor.

“He had treatment, originally just chemo, radiation treatment and he kind of recovered from that. He had a long several months of just normal activity but he started to fail again over the last few months,” said Leland Christenson, Cody and Judah’s father.

Sports always had a special place in Judah’s life.

“He loved tracking games on the computer, the teams that were winning and following favorite teams favorite players. He loved to go outside and hit baseballs and shoot baskets and he loved pretending he was an announcer,” said Leland.

But it was his heart that his family will remember.

“He was always gracious and he was always loving to his brothers and sisters,” said Leland.

To help pay for Judah’s medical bills, the basketball team held a benefit breakfast. Unfortunately, Judah wouldn’t be able to attend.

“He eventually lost the battle, he couldn’t keep going anymore,” said Leland.

“We’re still going to have it. We like rally everyone together, and the whole community is behind it,” said Duane Gasperini, Washburn’s basketball coach.

Cody joined the team for the section semi-final in Superior the day after Judah died.

“For me i really just enjoy playing. I still want to be playing even though something hard has happened in the past week,” said Cody. 

“He’s a super strong kid. You can just see it in his eyes, he wants to win just as bad as we do and he’s very motivated right now,” said Connor Bouchard, Washburn senior basketball player.

The team wore custom warm-up shirts, dedicated to Judah. Playing for Judah, the castle guards advanced to the section finals the same day as the benefit.

“We’re here to celebrate his life and celebrate the fact that these guys get to play basketball here today,” said Leland.

Mcdonnell Catholic School, Washburn’s opponent heard about the benefit and contributed. Presenting the family with a check before the game Saturday.

“The people coming out even though they don’t even know Judah to support the team and their efforts to help us,” said Cody.

Washburn may not be going to the state tournament but this season the castle guards shined off the court.

“Incredible. It speaks a lot to the coach and his leadership of the program… Just to be a part of it is really exciting, really gratifying to us,” said Leland.

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