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By MLE competitive eater Tracy 'Mmm Mmm' Goode

Posted April 23, 2013
Kelly at 18 months: Home from the hospital, asleep after having a seizure. © Tracy Goode

Tracy 'Mmm Mmm' Goode pays thanks to all in the competitive eating community who have helped his daughter and family get through some very difficult times.

My name is Tracy 'Mmm Mmm' Goode.

You may have never heard of me, but I’m a competitive eater.

I'm pretty low on the food chain, so to speak, #50 with Major League Eating (MLE).

I am the other half of the bookend along with Joey 'Jaws' Chestnut on MLE's top 50 and I am proud to say that.

I'm still starting out.

I'm also a father of three amazing kids, my son Dylan and my twin girls Molly and Kelly.

When Kelly was 18 months I took her and the others shopping and I noticed Kelly wasn't quite herself.

We went home and at lunch, while she was in her highchair, I saw the first of what would end up many seizures she would have.

After being in a children's hospital and despite seeing many doctors and specialists, they never found the underlining cause.

She went one whole year without seizures and then they came back.

Once again no answers.

She went two whole years with no issues but since this past February she has been in and out of the hospital more times than I can recall.

Still no answers.

I would post updates on Twitter and FaceBook so family and friends could be updated on the ongoings of Kelly's health (#KELLYSTRONG).

I never imagined I would get the support of a bigger family than my own, the competitive eating community.

On April 1, Kelly and Molly turned five and that is when I was shown just how incredible the competitive eating community truly is.

While out to lunch with the whole family, I got a message from Michelle 'Cardboard Shell' Lesco to check out something posted on my FaceBook wall.

The following literally brought tears to my eyes in the middle of the restaurant:

Cardboard Shell along with competitive eaters Meredith 'Deep-Fried Diva' Boxberger, Jon 'Bastos' Bello, Rob 'Dog' Nguyen and Cardboard's boyfriend Jeff made this very touching video for Kelly.

My whole family was floored by this gesture and some had the same teary reaction I did.

Then a little later in the day I got a notice of yet another post on my FaceBook page by Jamie 'the Bear' McDonald:

Jamie had asked me what Kelly's favourite food was, which is McDonald's cheeseburger Happy Meals, then Jamie's fantastic brother Joseph reached out to me and asked what Kelly’s favourite song was.

They then made this amazing tribute.

Sadly, Kelly didn't watch all of Jamie's video – she was too busy dancing – but my family and I did and we once again were touched by another person who cares enough to not just support us, but also show support for Epilepsy Awareness.

There were many other eaters who have reached out who were unable to be a part of these videos but still wanted to show concern and love and continue to do so everyday just by asking about Kelly and letting me vent my own frustrations.

The super friendly eater Molly Schuyler even sent Kelly a gift that arrived on her birthday.

I have thanked everyone over and over for everything they have done and continue to do by supporting my family and I during this tough time; I appreciate the Rake & Herald for allowing me to attempt to show on a larger scale my deep feeling of gratitude and love for not just these eaters but all the eaters who have tweeted, messaged, texted or called to check on Kelly and my family.

Kelly has a neurology appointment tomorrow (23/4/13).

While we won't be getting any answers, the next few weeks will be very vital for Kelly.

I really just had to express my gratitude to everyone who has been so unbelievably kind through all of this.

She's stubborn and I have no doubt she will kick this and hopeful grow out of it.

Once again thank you, thank you, thank you for showing my daughter so much love.

For more information on epilepsy, click this link

Chief hack's note: All at the Rake & Herald wish Kelly a full and rapid recovery and send nothing but healing thoughts to her, her family and Tracy. Friends of mine have and do suffer from this often very misunderstood condition. We hope that all who are touched either directly or indirectly by epilepsy will receive the healing, strength and support they so require. We would also like to join with Tracy in thanking all those members of the competitive eating community who have given their love, kindness and support to Kelly and her family. You do both your sport and the human race proud. Thank you.

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