A benefit concert was held on December 3 at the Camille Piche Centre in Embrun, organized by Russell native Tara Shannon and the Kin Club of Russell. A large crowd of almost 150 people attended to cheer on the talented lineup, and to show their support for Jonathan Pitre Park.
The event was hosted by Sam Laprade of CityNews Ottawa, who introduced each act as they serenaded the crowd. Jessica Pearson, Sam Stone, Yvan Petit, and Wade Foster all took to the stage and filled the venue with music, before Laprade invited Pitre’s mother Tina Boileau up to speak to the crowd.
Boileau extended her heartfelt thanks to those present, as well as everyone who helped organize and support the event and fundraising efforts. She thanked the crowd for being there and continuing to support the work she and her son started, and for supporting the park being built in his memory. Already under construction next to the sports dome, the park is a memorial for Jonathan Pitre and his inspiring work in raising awareness of epidermolysis bullosa (EB).
Scotiabank Russell presented Boileau with a cheque for $3000 to match the fundraising efforts. Other sponsors included the Township of Russell, Embrun Ford, Russell IDA Downtown Pharmacy, Dr. Darrell Menard, Kelly’s Boutique, Home Hardware, Jax and Jesse’s Concrete Cutting and Coring Inc., Luneterie Embrun, and Van Dusen Law Office.
After the presentation of the cheque, Tara Shannon and her band entertained for the rest of the night, singing a set of lively songs and Christmas classics.