HOSPICE NORTHWEST & LEADERSHIP THUNDER BAY UNVEIL NEW BOULEVARD LAKE "WALL OF REMEMBRANCE"
THUNDER BAY, ONTARIO - March 26, 2019 (LSN) – Shane Judge is chair of Hike for Hospice, the annual fundraising event for Hospice Northwest. The Hike is a fundraising walk around Boulevard Lake. He is standing in front of the art installation, Wall of Remembrance, produced by the local artist, Luc Despres. It’s going to be installed in the new butterfly park that’s been built off of Adelaide Street in Boulevard Lake Park.
Thunder Bay’s Boulevard Lake Park is about to become home to a significant new art installation. It’s called the Wall of Remembrance.
The city’s parks department has approved a proposal by Hospice Northwest to install the art piece as a memorial for all the citizens of Thunder Bay who’ve lost friends and family members.
The art piece is the work of Thunder Bay artist Luc Despres. Despres collaborated with the Hike for Hospice planning team to design a piece on the theme of butterflies taking flight. Butterflies are a symbol used by hospice organizations around the world.
The art piece itself is a rectangular frame more than a metre tall by more than three metres wide. It will be mounted on a concrete base.
The choice of location was deliberate. The art piece will be installed in the Adelaide Street Monarch Butterfly Garden on the east side of the Park.
Dan Fulton, developer of the new garden, was approached to see if the remembrance wall could be placed within the butterfly garden. Not only was he thrilled with the idea, he revealed that his mother, Joy Fulton, was a dedicated long-time volunteer with Hospice Northwest.
The project was developed as the result of a collaboration between Hospice Northwest and Leadership Thunder Bay.
Funding for the wall comes from generous donations by Northern Credit Union and Union Gas. The Remembrance Wall will be revealed publicly at this year’s Hike for Hospice around Boulevard Lake on Sunday, May 05th.
“This has been one of the most fulfilling and touching projects Hospice Northwest has ever been involved in”, says Cherie Kok, executive director at Hospice Northwest. “We couldn’t be more pleased with the results of this collaborative venture and with the assistance Leadership Thunder Bay has provided.
What began as a simple request to Leadership Thunder Bay for assistance in strengthening the Hike’s memorial component grew into a collaborative venture with a story that is touching the hearts of all involved.
Leadership Thunder Bay participants work in “whole brain” teams to complete projects that will influence our city in a variety of ways. Their goal is to build core leadership skills such as project management, innovation and problem solving, as well as courage, empathy and authenticity through collaboration with organizations. Hospice Northwest was among a number of groups who presented project ideas to Leadership Thunder Bay.
Only a select numberof proposals were chosen. Hospice Northwest’s was a request for assistance in enhancing the Hike for Hospice Remembrance Wall which was first introduced at the Hike the previous year.
Leadership Thunder Bay Class of 2019 Stacey Drombolis said that choosing the Hospice Northwest project was an easy decision for her team.
“When we were first presented with the options to select from, our group was immediately drawn to Hospice Northwest and their proposal. We recognized that this is a tremendous organization that provides vital social services for our community and contributes an amazing amount of support to those in their most trying and difficult times.”
As a touching tribute not only to Dan Fulton’s mother Joy, but to the care and commitment hospice volunteers bring to their clients, the artist incorporated the word ‘Joy’ into the artwork.
Team member Stacey Drombolis agrees that the project was a pleasure to work on.
“We can’t say how pleased we are that this will remain a standing monument to not only Leadership Thunder Bay, Despres Metal Artwork, and Hospice Northwest, but to the possibilities of what community engagement and collaboration can achieve”, said Stacey.
Hospice Northwest provides support and comfort by trained volunteers to people living in their final days. The organization was founded in Thunder Bay by health care professionals over 30 years ago who saw far too many people spending their final days alone.
Online registration for the Hike for Hospice is now open. Early in-person registration for the Hike will be held at the Hospice Northwest office at 63 Carrie Street on Friday May 3 from 9:00 AM – 7:00 PM.
Hikers are asked to meet at St. Ignatius High School at 12:30 PM on Sunday May 5th for the Opening Ceremony, after which the participants will be piped across the street to begin the walk in Boulevard Lake. This family-friendly event will feature a 3 km and 5 km walk around the lake, and will include great entertainment, face painting and clowns for the kids, our special remembrance ceremony and some wonderful prizes, including a WestJet trip for two and a 50/50 draw. Everyone is invited to come out and see the new remembrance wall and to help support hospice care in Thunder Bay.