Hamline News

Teen Fighting Rare Illness Becomes Honorary Piper


Thirteen-year old Aurora Seger of Saint Paul now has a whole team of Pipers on her side as she deals with congenital muscular dystrophy, a genetic degenerative disease. Aurora became an honorary member of the Hamline University Women’s Soccer team on Friday, September 2 during a mock press conference put on by the team and Hamline Athletics.

“You are a Piper! You have spirit and desire,” Hamline President Fayneese Miller told Aurora at the event. “You have all the qualities we expect our Pipers to have.”

Aurora was presented with a Pipers’ soccer jersey, posed for photos with the team, and took part in a rousing ‘Go Pipes’ chant. Afterward, the team surprised her again with her own personalized locker in Hutton and the group broke out into an impromptu dance party in the locker room.

“It feels amazing to be a part of something outside of myself,” Aurora said.

Aurora and the Pipers were matched through Team IMPACT, an organization that aims to improve the quality of life for children facing life-threatening and chronic illnesses through the power of team. As a Hamline Piper, Aurora will have a supportive group of young women and coaches to encourage her, and the Pipers will likely be inspired as well.

“You have a fighting spirit and resilience,” Head Women’s Soccer Coach Ted Zingman said of Aurora. “I think Aurora will teach us all to be grateful for our health and the opportunity to be a part of athletics at a great institution like Hamline. We can look at the big picture and see how blessed we all are.”

Throughout the season, and for as long as she wants, Aurora will spend time with the team a couple times a month by attending games and other team events. You can read more about women’s soccer on the Hamline Athletics’ website. Find out more about Team IMPACT here.