When there’s a need for someone to step up for the community and for those in need, Joan Lemoine has few equals.
The 86-year-old Parksville resident — recently awarded the province’s Good Citizenship medal — is at it again this month, pledging to shave her head to raise money that will send young cancer patients to Camp Goodtimes.
Lemoine has done this before as part of the Cops for Cancer Tour de Rock fundraising efforts. In fact, this will be Lemoine’s fifth head shave. She first did it in 2010 and last year raised $5,200. Her goal this year is $6,000.
“That way, four little kids will go to camp,” said Lemoine. “And it grows back — it’s only hair.”
Lemoine has been battling health issues in the last year and wasn’t sure she was going to do the head shave in 2016. That changed at a recent event.
“Ron Yates said he would donate $500 if I shaved my head,” said Lemoine. She said that pledge was quickly matched by Ken Schley. Then MP Gord Johns, MLA Michelle Stilwell and Mayor Marc Lefebvre said they would kick in $250 each.
“Within half an hour I had $1,750 (pledged),” said Lemoine. “I can’t turn that money down. I’m off to a good start.”
Lemoine said she has made it clear to the Canadian Cancer Society that all money she raises through this effort goes to getting youngsters to Camp Goodtimes and “nothing else. I believe strongly kids shouldn’t have cancer,” she said.
The Tour de Rock, a group of police officers and others (including Port Alberni RCMP officer Brady Mathison of Qualicum Beach) who cycle the length of Vancouver Island to raise money to support services and research of pediatric cancer, rolls into Parksville Qualicum Beach on Thursday, Sept. 29.
Lemoine will be shaving her head as part of this area’s big fundraising event for the Tour de Rock, the Beer and Burger night at the Quality Inn Bayside. That event starts at 6 p.m. Tickets are $20. For tickets and more information, call Bob Bourgeault at 250-954-7688.
Before that on Sept. 29, from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m., the Tour de Rock riders will be at Thrifty Foods in Parksville, where residents can meet the riders and make a donation. For more information about that event, call Barry Oxford at 250-468-5049.
To support Lemoine’s efforts, you can make a donation (cheques made out to Cops For Cancer) at The NEWS, Parksville Chrysler, the Legion or city hall.