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Chantal Germain

Chantal at the Telethon

Chantal at the Telethon

My adventure at MDC!

At first, I just wanted to do a little fundraising to help my idol, Michel Louvain, reach the fundraising goal of the Telethon for Muscular Dystrophy, but then I met some youth affected with the disease: Patrick, Mylène, Nancy, and Éric. It was then that I decided to pour all my energy into fundraising. I had only one goal in mind,“Raise more funds so I can help give these young people a better future!”

Sometimes it’s been at the expense of my health, but volunteering for Muscular Dystrophy Canada has made me rich! Not financially, but I became a millionaire in terms of the love I get

Chantal and Michel

Chantal and Michel

from this warm and rich group of friends that I still see from time to time. I think about Normay, Lise Lebel, Hélène, Manon and Michel Louvain, with whom I’ve developed a close friendship!

Thank you Muscular Dystrophy Canada!!! Yes, I did volunteer valuable time, but I also made countless memories that I’ll cherish forever…

Please volunteer! It feels really good!!!

Together, where there’s a will, there’s a way! I’ll always believe it!

- Chantal  Germain

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Chantal Germain became involved with the Jerry Lewis Labour Day Telethon in Montréal, Québec in 1984. She had already begun fundraising for Muscular Dystrophy Canada a year before. In 1993 Chantal raised $100,000 – a record at the time. By the time the last Montréal Telethon aired in 1996, Chantal had contributed over $500,000 total to the fundraising efforts. 

Mise au jeu lors d'une activité de levée de fonds Campagne 1990

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Dr. George Karpati

DrKpuzzleDr. George Karpati was one of Canada’s pre-eminent researchers in the field of muscular dystrophy. Dr. Karpati was recognized internationally as one of the leading experts on the diagnosis and treatment of neuromuscular disorders, including muscular dystrophy.  He was among the first to recognize the importance of dystrophin in Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD), and its absence in the muscles of those with the disease.

Born in Hungary, Dr. Karpati was a Holocaust survivor who emigrated to Canada in 1957.  He received an M.D. from Dalhousie University in 1960 and spent 30 years in clinical practice, research and teaching in neurology at the Montreal Neurological Institute.  He was the Izaak Killam Chair and Professor of Neurology and Neurosurgery at McGill University.

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Your Stories: Doug Torrance

This shot is of the late Bill Kincaid, one of the major movers behind getting air time for the Telethon and making sure it kept on the air for over three decades.  He and his wife Maureen (mentioned in earlier picture...) were part of the original team behind the Telethon and stayed with it for so many years.

This shot is of the late Bill Kincaid, one of the major movers behind getting air time for the Telethon and making sure it kept on the air for over three decades. He and his wife Maureen (mentioned in earlier picture…) were part of the original team behind the Telethon and stayed with it for so many years.

So many memories of my years of involvement with MDAC… over 32 year’s worth!  Most of my memories are too lengthy to share here, because they do scan over three decades of my involvement with the Ottawa portion of the annual Jerry Lewis MD Labour Day Telethon.  I began as a volunteer around 1973 as a ‘runner’ and odd job guy at the Landsdowne Park location of the Telethon that year.

We then moved to the Skyline Hotel and were there for over 21 years.   My most vivid memories are the research breakthroughs, meeting the clients and families, and moving in to the Skyline Hotel on the Thursday night of Labour Day weekend, and crawling out on Monday night after ‘tear down!’   People like Ken ‘The General’ Grant, Ian Gent, Cpt. Tom McCormick and his wife Carey, Bill and Maureen Kincaid and more, are all still like family to me.  Seeing the excited faces on kids bringing in their hard earned donations at backyard ‘Carnivals for MD,’ receiving cheques from service clubs, and seeing the ‘Tote Board’ totals slowly crawl up are all still vivid in my mind.

This shot shows Maureen Kinkaid O.B.E. with a telethon volunteer.   Maureen, along with her late husband Bill, were instrumental in getting the Telethon going in the early years, and they both served for over 25 years as co-chairman.   Maureen handing things over to me for the last four or five Telethons in Ottawa.

This shot shows Maureen Kinkaid O.B.E. with a telethon volunteer. Maureen, along with her late husband Bill, were instrumental in getting the Telethon going in the early years, and they both served for over 25 years as co-chairman. Maureen handing things over to me for the last four or five Telethons in Ottawa.

I have a pile of old VHS tapes, covering many years of the Ottawa portion of the Telethon, as well as a huge chunk of the Jerry Lewis portion from Los Angeles, Las Vegas etc.  They are, unfortunately, still in the old VHS format.  I would cart my VCR down with me to the hotel, plug it in at the beginning of the Telethon, and try to remember to change tapes every six hours or so!

I ended my involvement as local Telethon Chair after my wife and I were transferred to Saskatchewan.  I still maintain some contact with the Ottawa crew, and am amazed and encouraged with recent research, diagnosis and treatment breakthroughs!  Thank you MDC for letting me serve… and keep up the fight!

Doug Torrance – Wellington, ON

 

 

It is a picture of 700 plus volunteers at our 'Love In' at the former Skyline Hotel in Ottawa around 1974.  We would traditionally have this 'pep rally' with all the volunteers a week or so ahead of the Labour Day Telethon to make sure we were all on the same page... lots of fun, food and fellowship!

It is a picture of 700 plus volunteers at our ‘Love In’ at
the former Skyline Hotel in Ottawa around 1974. We would traditionally have this ‘pep rally’ with all the volunteers a week or so ahead of the Labour Day Telethon to make sure we were all on the same page… lots of fun, food and fellowship!

 

This first shot shows from Left to Right, The Late Bill Kinkaid, long time host and co-chairman of the Ottawa Telethon, Captain Tom McCormack, long time Telethon Chairman, and Ken 'The General' Grant formerly of CFRA in Ottawa, original and long standing Host of the Telethon in Ottawa.

This first shot shows from Left to Right, The Late Bill Kinkaid, long time host and co-chairman of the Ottawa Telethon, Captain Tom McCormack, long time Telethon Chairman, and Ken ‘The General’ Grant formerly of CFRA in Ottawa, original and long standing Host of the Telethon in Ottawa.

 

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First Chairman of the Medical Advisory Board

The Medical Advisory Board was created in 1958, currently known as the Medical and Scientific Advisory Committee. It provides advice and makes recommendations to the Board of Directors on research policy, granting programs, and funding. The Committee is comprised of dedicated volunteers from across Canada who have expertise in neuromuscular disease; together, they represent various perspectives from the health professional and patient communities.

Here is the introduction of the Medical Advisory Board and its first Chairman from page five of the April 1958 issue of the Muscular Dystrophy Reporter.

Founding of Medical Advisory Board

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A Family Connection

md2[1]For one Muscular Dystrophy Canada family, the connection to the organization goes back almost 60 years. Ken Killen was a career Fire Fighter with the Kingston Fire Department, and began volunteering with the Muscular Dystrophy Association of Canada in the late 1950s, a connection that carries on today through his daughter Debra Chiabai, and grandchildren Alex and Kate.

“My father was a career Fire Fighter in Kingston. He often had part time jobs in his off hours (bus driver, photographer, taxi driver) since in the early years it was not a particularly well paid job. Even though he was very busy with his full and part time work, he always made time to volunteer. The Fire Fighter charity of choice, then as now, was the Muscular Dystrophy Association of Canada,” remembers Debra. “I know he had a leadership role which I think would now be called Fire Fighter Advisor, but I’m not sure if that was just for his department or if it was more regional. He was responsible for a number of years for running the Kingston Telethon Centre and he also made frequent trips to the televised location in Watertown, New York to speak on behalf of Fire Fighters, co-host and to receive and deliver cheques. He would also take co-lead/coordinate the local canister drive and other events like McHappy Day. He also dressed up as a clown for fundraising events and to participate in the annual Kingston Santa Claus parade.”

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