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Fantastic people

Dear sir:

This is a letter of sincere gratitude to the fantastic people of Fort Frances.

I had the honour of working with a group of people involved with the first-annual “Relay for Life.” I and nine other individuals, as a team, helped organize and raise roughly $75,000 to fight cancer with the help of this caring community.

You should be very proud of yourselves as we raised more money than any other community in Northwestern Ontario, including Thunder Bay.

There are some people who must be recognized and thanked for their help on this spectacular event. First, thank you to every volunteer who came out to help. It is people like you who make any event like this a reality. Second, thanks to Julie and the good people of Gardewine for donating the use of a trailer to move stage, table, and chairs.

Third, we would like to thank Bob Whitburn and D.J. Roach Electric for donating the time and materials to make sure the power ran for the entertainment and cooking tent. Fourth, thank you to the O.P.P. for being there when we needed you.

And finally, thank you to Cliff Pidlubny of Sight and Sound for stopping by and taking care of a few technical problems encountered at set-up.

There also are some entertainers who have to be recognized for their contributions. “The Rainy Lake Highlanders,” made up of Jim Avis, Jim Newman, Bill McEvoy, Ed Haglund, Bill Shine, and Don Hayward, put on a display second to none. From the opening ceremonies to the playing of “Amazing Grace,” these individuals, also known as “The Tartan Terrors,” really know how to keep a crowd satisfied.

The Fort Frances High School Band, led by John Dutton, proved to everyone why they were so popular when they travelled to Europe this year. Thank you.

Thanks to Paul Morrison for his bit of comedy he performed. This is a young man who will go far in the business. Thanks also to Patrick Flemming for coming up and playing a tune on his acoustic guitar.

“Wednesday’s For Free,” made up of Brent Danylchuk, Todd Roulston, Ted DeBenetti, and Tyler Gagne, did an excellent job at the end of the evening with their mixture of new and classic hits. A big thanks to you guys!

Jackie and Gerry Guimond, together with Dave O’Dell, gave an inspirational performance that also needs to be recognized and thanked. And finally, we would like to thank Melanie Bodnar for a perfect rendition of O Canada during the opening ceremonies, along with Victor Armit, Kevin Cawston, Lindsey Cawston, Grant Rogoza, Dave Strain, Dean Tibbs, and Pauline Jolicoeur for their fun-loving mixture of music.

It was a pleasure to perform beside each and every one of you.

Special thanks go out to Kent’s Tents and the Rendezvous Trail for the use of their tents, as well as the volunteers there to help put them up.

To all the major sponsors with financial support and food, without you we would not have been able to have this event. The Legion Ladies Auxiliary and M&M Meats, along with the Kiwanis Club, definitely lead the way in promoting charity for the community. We cannot express our gratitude enough for what you did to help us.

Thanks to the Fort Frances Fire Department for setting up and taking care of our first aid requirements. Great job guys. Thanks to Asselin’s for donating portable toilets at the site. Also, thanks to Lakeland Personnel for providing security after hours.

If we have missed anybody, I apologize, but please accept our thanks.

It is never too late to start planning next year’s event. I hope the people of Fort Frances continue to show their support when it comes to “Relay for Life” because with your help, this disease can--and will--be beaten.

To all members who sat on the relay committee, you should be very proud of our accomplishment. The professionalism each of you showed at every step of the planning and implementation of “Relay for Life” made it a fantastic reality.

I am glad I was a part of it.

Best regards,

Rod Armit

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