Chicago ‘Angel’ Helps Create Blackhawks Memory For Nebraska Dad With ALS

(CBS) – It was a dream come true for a hockey fan, who just wanted to give his family something that will last forever: a happy memory of him.

As thousands strolled in in the bitter cold for another regular-season Monday night game, it was anything but for a family from Omaha, Neb.

It was No. 1 on a young dad’s bucket list.

CBS 2’s Brad Edwards reports.

Tim Cacioppo is a 44-year-old father of four kids, aged 6 to 12. He has a doting wife and a dreadful diagnosis: ALS, or Lou Gehrig’s Disease.

It is ultimately fatal.

“It’s very tough, so that’s why this is so important,” Tim says.

In Chicago, Peggy Gilmore learned from a friend about Tim’s desire to watch an NHL game with his family.

ALS stole her mom 22 years ago -– a loss she relives every Christmas.

“Knowing how hard it’s been for me, my heart just breaks,” Gilmore says.

So, she helped raise funds and organize the getaway for the Cacioppos. Tim says they consider her “our angel.”

Mission accomplished. For the Cacioppo family, it’s been a dream vacation — all expenses paid, from American Girl to pregame dinner at the West End.

They received a welcome on the Jumbotron. It’s a memory — memories they’ll need to remember.

“My daughter, Anna, she’s six years old. Is she going to remember him?” Tim’s wife, Natalie, says.

That gets to them both.

“That’s the important thing – getting things in while I can,” Tim says.

Bucket list, top entry: Check.

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