Blue KC Chiefs Kingdom Champion: Keara Torkelson and Dr. Terance Tsue

We’re spotlighting two Kansas Citians who were recently honored as Chiefs Kingdom Champions.

Keara Torkelson

Former U.S. Army Reserve Sergeant Keara Torkelson was selected by Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Kansas City (Blue KC) and the Kansas City Chiefs as the Blue KC Chiefs Kingdom Champion for the Chiefs October 30, 2017, matchup against the Denver Broncos. As part of the Chiefs annual Salute to Service game, Blue KC and the Chiefs honored Torkelson on the field prior to kickoff where she conducted the ceremonial first pass to former Chiefs player Shawn Barber.

As a member of the U.S. Army Reserves from 2006-2013, Torkelson was preparing to deploy to Iraq when she was wounded in the tragic shooting at Fort Hood, Texas, in 2009. Sustaining wounds to the head and back, Torkelson recovered from her injuries and returned to active duty before completing her service. Awarded the Purple Heart in 2015, Torkelson now works to help combat veterans overcome PTSD as a mentor and volunteer with the Kansas City-based Warriors Ascent program.

“It gives me a very fulfilling purpose,” said Torkelson, who completed the Warriors Ascent program herself before becoming a mentor. “I want to live the Warriors Ascent logo, which has one soldier carrying another soldier. Sometimes you’re able to carry, and sometimes you need to be carried.”

Read more about Keara’s story.

Dr. Terance Tsue

Dr. Terance Tsue of the University of Kansas Cancer Center was selected by Blue KC and the Chiefs as the Blue KC Chiefs Kingdom Champion for the NFL Crucial Catch game on October 15, 2017, against the Pittsburgh Steelers. He conducted the ceremonial first pass and was recognized on the field prior to kickoff.

As the physician-in-chief at the KU Cancer Center, Dr. Tsue combines his expertise as a professor, surgeon and researcher to provide clinical oversight and treatment for cancer patients across the region. Nationally recognized for his expertise in microvascular reconstructive surgery for head and neck cancers—specifically microvascular reconstruction of the jaw—Dr. Tsue has been included in Best Doctors, a renowned electronic database and consulting service made up of the best five percent of physicians worldwide, since 2005.

“To be recognized in this fashion by organizations that demonstrate success through the same philosophy is very special and a true honor,” Dr. Tsue said in regard to being named a Blue KC Chiefs Kingdom Champion. “It’s a privilege to be part of this great partnership both Blue KC and the Chiefs have with the University of Kansas Cancer Center in the battle against this disease that touches all of us.”

Read more about Dr. Tsue’s story.

Before each home game this season, Blue KC and the Chiefs will honor individuals who make Kansas City a better place to live, work and play. Learn more about how you can nominate a Blue KC Chiefs Kingdom Champion.

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