MONTREAL — Talk about putting yourself out there for a good cause. The McGill Swim Team’s annual Loonie Line does more than attract the attention of Montrealers who, despite having a reputation as having seen it all, still raise their eyebrows at Speedos in November. The annual event raises money to help battle breast cancer as a tribute to former assistant coach, and McGill swim team alumnus, Genevieve Gregoire who died of the disease at the young age of 32.
“It keeps Gen’s spirit alive,” said coach Peter Carpenter of his team’s exceptional efforts.
The team welcomed a new annual award last year recongnizing courage and determination in Gen’s honour. And while it can be argued that standing on Sherbrooke Street in a bathing suit in 10-degree weather takes both those characteristics, the award and the Loonie Line combine to send a greater message. Over the last three years the McGill swim team has raised over $7,000 one loonie at a time. This unique, and admittedly creative effort, was celebrated last December by the Cedars Cancer Institute which uses the funds for equipment, care, research and education.
“It’s a phenomenal example of what can be done,” said Jeff Shamie, director general at Cedars. “The swimmers told a very strong and emotional story of their former coach at the meeting. It was a true testament of how much she meant to them and we are so grateful for their donation.”
Buidling on that success, this year’s efforts garnered a record $2952, not bad for a hard day’s work.
If you missed the Loonie Line and would like to top up the total to $3,000, the swim team, who are also in their Speedos most mornings and evenings at Memorial Pool, will gladly accept your donation.
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