Barrie Burmaster of Parksville getting his head shaved by his wife Helen McNamara at the Tour de Rock beer and burger night at the Quality Resort Bayside on Thursday (Sept. 29).

The Tour de Rock loved my son Jack: special guest rider

People got together on Thursday night in Parksville for the annual beer and burger fundraiser for Tour de Rock

Mena Westhaver said she has sixteen new best friends up and down the Island.

Westhaver, who lives in Parksville for a couple months out of the year with her family, is one of the special guest riders for the 2016 Tour de Rock.

Westhaver got up to speak at the beer and burger night at the Quality Resort Bayside on Thursday (Sept. 29).

Westhaver said her son Jack was diagnosed with cancer in 2009.

She also said since then Tour de Rock and Camp Goodtimes has been a vital part of their lives.

“They gave my child something that no one else could give him,” Westhaver said. “They gave him an opportunity to go to camp even though he was, at times, near death. They gave us Camp Goodtimes three years in a row as a family where we could forget about cancer, forget about the needle pokes, forget about the lumbar punctures and just go and be kids and be together.”

Westhaver said at this point in time, she looks at her family’s cancer journey as a choice.

“You people all made the choice to be here. You made the choice to learn how to ride a bike, made the choice to put on spandex, you made the choice to come here tonight and collectively, we made the choice to help children — some of whom you’ll never know.”

She also said that her son, who is now 10 years old, didn’t have a choice to have cancer.

“As a parent, it would never have been something we chose for him to have endured. But I was determined to make the choice that we make the best of our experience and make it a positive one,” Westhaver said.

In 2009, Westhaver said Jack became a junior rider. The junior team is made up of Vancouver Island who have a history of cancer. Some of the kids are currently undergoing treatment, while others are in remission.

Westhaver said she can’t thank the Tour de Rock enough.

“You people are changing the world for kids you may never meet, but know you’ve made the most amazing choice ever. And there’s parents like me throughout the Island that want the opportunity to hug you,” she said.

Participating in the ride this year was a no brainer for Westhaver.

“When I was asked if I wanted the opportunity to ride the Tour de rock, absolutely I’ll ride the Tour de Rock,” Westhaver said. “Yeah, it might hurt, but it didn’t hurt and it’s not going to hurt like it hurt my son Jack. Cancer hurt my son Jack. The Tour de Rock loved my son Jack.”

 

Just Posted

Qualicum man sentenced for tying up, robbing another man

Gabriel Stephen Nelson robbed and assaulted travelling businessman in 2017

Parksville man ‘parks’ horse during liquor store pit stop

As long as animal wasn’t jaywalking, no problem, says city official

Parksville roundtable highlights need for affordable housing, recreation

Mayor Ed Mayne held facilitated event in January to hear visions for city, council

RDN to form new group to replace Northern committees

Recreation commissioners disappointed with the decision

Second delivery of building units for 222 Corfield in Parksville arrives March 21

Vehicles should expect intermittent single-lane alternating traffic

VIDEO: Can you believe it? This B.C. hill pulls cars backwards up a slope

Sir Isaac Newton had clearly never been to this Vernon anomaly when he discovered gravity

European, Canadian regulators to do own review of Boeing jet

Air Canada plans to remove the Boeing 737 Max from its schedule at least through July 1

Prime minister defends Liberal budget measures as sales effort gets underway

Conservatives under Andrew Scheer say it’s a spree funded by borrowing against the future

Mayor meets with B.C. health minister on homeless taxi transfers

Two homeless people were discharged from Surrey Memorial and sent to a Chilliwack shelter

B.C. lottery winner being sued by co-workers

They claim he owes them $200,000 each, in a lawsuit filed in B.C. Supreme Court in Vancouver

Teacher reprimanded for conduct towards special needs student

Alan Stephen Berry told vice principal he did not have time to use positive strategies

‘Full worm super moon’ to illuminate B.C. skies on first day of spring

Spring has sprung, a moon named in honour of thawing soil marks final super moon until 2020

Having phone within sight while driving does not violate law: B.C. judge

The mere presence of a cell phone within sight of a driver is not enough for a conviction, judge says

Woman punched on the sidelines of B.C. soccer game

Both involved were watching the U21 game in West Vancouver from the sidelines when things got heated

Most Read