Charity walk brings in more than $14,000 for Hospice Renfrew

A group of people gather around an elderly man wearing sunglasses, holding signs for Hospice Renfrew
Russell Mackay, centre, raised more than $14,000 for Hospice Renfrew by walking 33 km over three days on Thanksgiving weekend. Photo courtesy of Crystal Mackay.
Caleb Nickerson - CHIP - PontiacQC | 13-10-2021

A Beachburg man’s second walk for charity has again exceeded expectations, bringing in more than $14,000 for Hospice Renfrew. Russell Mackay, who will turn 84 in November and is also diabetic and legally blind, walked 33 km over three days throughout the Ottawa Valley to raise funds for the organization. His initial goal was $12,000.

Russell’s daughter Crystal said that though they had already presented a cheque for $14,000 on Sunday, donations would be accepted under the Papa Walks for Hospice banner until the end of the month:


Russell, who grew up near Shawville, made headlines last year when he walked from Beachburg to the Children’s Hospital of Eastern Ontario in Ottawa, raising more than $120,000 for the facility. He said he was pleased with the support he received from the community this year.

Crystal also said that she was pleased with the support, which would allow them to purchase recliner chairs for every room in the hospice, with some funds left over. She noted that often times families stay overnight with loved ones in the facility, and having a comfortable place to sit and rest is essential:


Crystal added that they also had a bagpiper leading them for the final kilometres in Renfrew. Russell said that another one of the highlights of this year’s walk was being named mayor for a day in Petawawa by Mayor Bob Sweet. He joked that he was quickly fired from the position:


Russell said that he was hoping to do more charity walks in the future, including one for the Pontiac Hospital, but didn’t have anything planned just yet.

To donate to Hospice Renfrew, visit their website and select the Papa Walks fund under the allocation tab. You can also call them at 1-866-751-1685 or mail a cheque to Hospice Renfrew, 459 Albert Street, Renfrew, Ontario, K7V 1V8.