Support the ‘Just Imagine’ campaign

Early Friday morning, the “Just Imagine” campaign will begin at the Rainy River Legion with a community pancake breakfast.
At 7 a.m., district resident and runner Bill Michl will begin his double marathon to bring the message of the need for a CT scanner at La Verendrye Hospital in Fort Frances to Rainy River District.
Accompanied by runners from Rainy River, then Emo, and finally Fort Frances, Bill will run the equivalent of two marathons in one day.
A single marathon is a major undertaking for any runner. A double marathon is a true endurance test. Bill truly has challenged himself to do the almost impossible.
He looks to accomplish his run in just over 10 hours. And he is doing it to increase the awareness of the necessity of having a CT scanner located in the district.
It is hoped people will line up along the highway and cheer Bill on as he passes through communities.
The symbol of the campaign is a cute cuddly teddy bear. And it is hoped those lining the streets and along the highway will wave a warm cuddly teddy bear back at Bill.
Stopping only for a short recognition at the Emo Legion, where that community is invited for lunch, Bill will continue on his route to finish in the early evening in Fort Frances.
Bill hopes to arrive at the Fort Frances Legion around 5 p.m. He will be joined by runners who will accompany him on his last six km of his journey.
It is hoped residents of Fort Frances will come out and cheer him on through his run in town, and then join him at the conclusion of his double marathon at the Legion here.
Friday will mark the kick-off for the CT scanner fundraising drive. Part of the dream of the original expansion of La Verendrye, the CT scanner looks to become a reality in 2007.
The cost of bringing a CT scanner to Rainy River District requires district residents to raise $1.5 million.
We all like to think that OHIP or medicare will supply all of our medical tests and needs. And it does—if you have the patience and time to wait. However, in an emergency, it really is nice to have as many of our needs looked after in a timely fashion and within Rainy River District.
That is where communities have to pull together to fund the type of hospital care and treatments they can receive.
When we wanted 21st-century hospitals throughout the district, the district went out and raised the money to modernize facilities in Rainy River, Emo, and Fort Frances.
Our next step is to bring all the diagnostic services we can afford to our 21st-century hospitals.
Once only used rarely, CT scanners have become an almost everyday procedure in medicine. Today, more than 100 people are sent out annually from the district to Kenora, Thunder Bay, Winnipeg, and International Falls for scans.
And in many cases, the timing of receiving a CT scan is crucial to the life of a patient.
Join with your community across the district this Friday by cheering on Bill Michl or participating in a community meal in either Rainy River, Emo, or Fort Frances.

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