Chanda Gunn

AvE ambassador Chanda Gunn


Chanda Gunn is an accomplished ice hockey player known for overcoming obstacles on and off the rink. When she was nine, she was diagnosed with juvenile absence epilepsy and quickly gained control over her epilepsy with anti-seizure medication. She excelled at hockey in her youth and played for the University of Wisconsin Madison.

Unfortunately, in the middle of her freshman year, she experienced a series of uncontrolled tonic-clonic (formerly called grand mal) seizures and had to leave college to regain control over her epilepsy. After her medicines were changed, she transferred to Northeastern University and pursued hockey with a different program. Chandra worked hard to prove to herself and her new coach that epilepsy would not interfere with her performance. Her perseverance paid off when she made the 1998 women’s national team at the end of her sophomore season. In 2004, Chanda was honored with the NCAA Female Sportsmanship Award and College Hockey Humanitarian Award. The following year, she played for the U.S. and helped the team win a gold medal at the World Championships. In 2006, Chanda was on the U.S. Olympic team that won bronze!

Today, Chanda lives an active life with her family. She continues to battle epilepsy but never lets it defeat her. Chanda believes people living with epilepsy should support one another and encourages the community not to let seizures discourage them from chasing their dreams. She shares the secret to her success, “I’ve learned to live with it – the fear of the unknown – because I want to really live life and for me living means playing ice hockey.”

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