Raising the flag
Over 100 people, including many cancer survivors, carried a flag symbolizing the fight against breast cancer which was then raised in front of Russell Township Council chambers in Embrun on Fri., Sept. 29. It will fly throughout October to recognize that October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month.     Vetter photo

Candice Vetter
Villager Staff
EMBRUN — The Township of Russell has officially resolved that October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month and started by raising a flag symbolizing the fight against breast cancer in front of the Russell Township hall in Embrun on Fri., Sept. 29.

GPR MP Francis Drouin was one of the special guests present at the flag-raising ceremony. Also present were GPR MPP Grant Crack, Russell Mayor Pierre Leroux, Friends for Life founder Marie-Claire Ivanski, and about 100 supporters and cancer survivors. Vetter photo

Over 100 people crowded into the municipal chambers beforehand, where Marie-Claire Ivanski, who started the Friends for Life initiative, thanked everyone who helps the cause against breast cancer in any way.

Ginette Rivet, one of Russell Township’s outstanding volunteers, including helping the cause of breast cancer awareness and therapy, celebrated 10 years cancer free recently. She was presented with flowers by Marie-Claire Ivanski at the kick-off of Breast Cancer Awareness Month at Russell Twp. Hall. Vetter photo

Russell Township Mayor Pierre Leroux, MPP Grant Crack and MP Francis Drouin also spoke.

Ivanski praised her supporters, which helped raise many thousands of dollars this year. Two Bingos raised several thousand, $7,200 was raised with the help of Marcel Beauchamp and Claire Desrosiers at the Victorian Tea, Salon de la Femme raised $12,000, the Hawkesbury Hawks raised $3,000, Scotiabank Russell contributed matching funds, and other organizations, persons and businesses provided support, including Jean Yves Dionne, Co-operators Insurance Casselman, Caisse Populaire, Francis Latour, Corvinelli Homes, Diane Hayes of Kelly’s Boutique, Pierre Carriere, Michel Dupuis, Victoria’s Quilts, Gathering Stitches in Chesterville, and Francis Dallaire, among many others.

Also on hand was Shannon Kingsley, of Run for the Cure in Ottawa. She spoke briefly and thanked those present, saying, “The hard work and dedication you do for the cause does not go unnoticed.”

Ivanski and Kingsley both stated that in February of this year the Canadian Cancer Society and the Canadian Breast Cancer Foundation had merged. Breast cancer is the most commonly diagnosed cancer in women. Kingsley said about one in eight people on average will develop breast cancer in Canada, with a much higher rate in this region. There is also some good news, which is a 40 per cent decrease in mortality since 1980 in persons with breast cancer.