18th season for Kayaking for Cancer
The Kayaking for Cancer paddlers began the annual trip from Kingston to Ottawa up the Rideau Canal system on Sat., Aug. 11. The group has raised around $670,000 for the Canadian Cancer Society to date and looked to add more to that total this year. There were 20 kayakers this season which is down a bit but the spirit is still alive and well.         Moore file photo

Prior to their departure the group reflected on the loss of one of their own this past year. Bernie Curran from Chesterville was a key member from earlier days with the crew who was an avid kayaker and just a very special person. Curran was knighted “Sir Bernie of the Rideau” by the group’s leader Kevin Dionne. Everybody that got to meet Curran fell in love with his sense of humour and his practical jokes. He was also a very serious euchre player along with his nephew Pat Moore during this eight day trip. Moore file photo

Jeff Moore
Record Staff
KINGSTON — The 18th Annual Kayaking for Cancer’s trek from Kingston to Ottawa began on Sat., Aug. 11. The group travels from Lake Ontario and make their way up the Rideau Canal, a total of 202 kilometres during their one-week escapade. On the first day they travelled from Kingston to Lower Brewers Lock where they spent the night.

Then they paddled to Jones Falls on Sunday then headed to Narrows Lock on Monday and on to Rideau Ferry on Tuesday before heading to Merrickville on Wednesday night.

They will host a remembrance in honour of Chesterville’s Bernie Curran who passed away earlier this year. Curran was instrumental in the success of the tour and paddled for many years until cancer slowed him down.

Curran was knighted “Sir Bernie of the Rideau” and held a veto to stay or remove a misbehaving kayaker. He never removed anyone but he challenged the disturber to do something challenging and entertaining to the whole group.

They then paddle to Pirate Cove Marina on Thursday and head to Long Island Locks on Friday and they will culminate either at Dows Lake or the locks by the Château Laurier in Ottawa.

Over the past 17 years paddlers have paddled over 3,600 km and has raised $670,000 for the Canadian Cancer Society. People can still make a donation on kayakingforcancer.com and you can also follow their trek on the journal on the top of their website.

The Chesterville contingent is slightly smaller this year with just four representing the town as Lisa Bortolussi, Sharon Erdelyi and Maureen Corrick kayaking and Fred Bortolousi helping out with he ground crew.

Other locals representing the area are Kevin Moore from Russell and Katarina Loggie from Winchester.