CT Scan drive gets healthy send-off

RAINY RIVER—More than 50 people rose early Friday morning in Rainy River to kick off the “Care Close to Home 2” fundraising drive for a CT Scanner at La Verendrye Hospital in Fort Frances.
The Rainy River Legion prepared and served a pancake-and-sausage breakfast for the crowd at 6:30 a.m. Afterwards, “Care Close to Home 2” chair Deane Cunningham spoke about project.
“We have really raised the bar as far as health care in the district,” he noted, citing the modern new hospital in Rainy River, the revamped Emo hospital, and the recently-completed renovations at La Verendrye.
“We now have services available in the district such as dialysis and chemotherapy,” he said. “Services that people had to travel away from home to get before.
“We saw this [CT Scanner] as the next step!”
Cunningham acknowledged all the volunteers who are serving on the campaign, as well as the Legions in Rainy River, Emo, and Fort Frances for hosting Friday’s event.
The event highlight began after all the indoor activities were completed. Bill Michl of Fort Frances, formerly from Stratton, is running 60 miles across the west end of the district to show that with determination, anything is possible.
“If he can do it, we can get out there and fund raise,” said Cunningham.
A total of $1.5 million needs to be raised locally to purchase the CT Scanner.
On Friday morning, the Rainy River Legion presented a cheque to the campaign for $20,000. Another $20,000 was donated by the Rainy River Hospital Auxiliary while a $1,000 cheque was presented by the Rainy River Legion Ladies Auxiliary.
Cunningham noted pledge cards are now available, adding Moe Henry of Stratton was the first to fill his out Friday morning for $2,000.
“With these donations today [Friday], we are over $150,000 towards our goal,” said Teresa Hazel, director of the Riverside Foundation for Health Care.
Campaign communications chair Jim Cumming said the committee was very pleased with the turnout at the kick-off.
“We were asked what numbers to expect in Rainy River [at such an early hour] and we are overwhelmed. This is excellent!” he enthused.
A silver collection was taken for the breakfast and $300 was raised in 30 minutes.
“We are very pleased with the support and how things turned out this morning,” said West District Campaign co-chair Brig McGreevy of Rainy River.
Michl was scheduled to be at the Emo Legion for a community luncheon on Friday from 12:30-1:30 p.m.
Then a welcome reception, along with more presentations, was slated at the Fort Frances Legion from 5-6:30 p.m.
(Fort Frances Daily Bulletin)