Dollars for Dialysis

Pointe-Claire (Quebec) – November 13, 2014 – It is mere coincidence that the words “daily” and “dialysis” are so similar, but for Beaconsfield resident Harold Murdock, it would be doubly difficult to go through his dialysis treatments at a downtown hospital. Thanks to the relatively-new hemodialysis unit in the ambulatory-care centre at the Lakeshore General Hospital (LGH), Harold Murdock is able to take a short car ride to the LGH, rather than endure the hour-and-a-half drive downtown – and thanks to the great care he has received at the Lakeshore unit, his family is going to bat for him – and other patients like him.

Dollars for Dialysis dream divulged

“The staff and nurses at the Lakeshore General Hospital have been so great, and instead of having to go downtown, I am able to go to the Lakeshore. I live seven minutes from the hospital”, he said.

Harold Murdock endures dialysis treatments for four-and-a-half to five hours a day, three days a week – and a project that his kids are embarking on has the ambitious goal of pumping even more funds into the hemodialysis unit that has helped their dad – and their mom, Shirley, as well – so much. Inspired by their parents’ struggles, and hoping to help others like him, Harold’s kids, Debra and Danny hatched the idea of raising some money to help other patients like their father. Danny Murdock lives in North Carolina with his wife Kathryn and their three daughters, Brittany, Vanessa and Heidi.

Danny is a passionate runner, so he and his daughter Brittany have decided to run more than 78 km in four days next January in the Walt Disney World Dopey Challenge, a gruelling set of four foot races at increasing distances: 5k, 10k, 21.1-kilometre half-marathon and a full 42-kilometre marathon on the fourth day. Danny’s youngest daughter Heidi and wife are running the 5- and 10-kilometre races, the middle daughter, Vanessa is running the 5K, 10K and half-marathon; but Danny and Brittany are girding themselves mentally and physically for all four races.

Still, Danny said, although he knows that the drain of running that far in that time period will be a challenge, he is excited about it. After all, running is tough, but compared to kidney failure, he said, it’s “not that tough.” “It’s the last day that will be the hardest,” said the North Carolina native, in town late last summer to visit his parents. During a recent visit to the Lakeshore General Hospital Foundation office, he said although the running is a challenge, it’s easy to do it when he thinks of what his father has to go through. “It’s mentally very difficult to find it in yourself to get up and run all over again, but it’s a lot easier to do compared to what my dad – and others like him – have to go through most days”, he said.

His sister Debra is in charge of the administration and fundraising aspect of the project. She will be overseeing the request for donations that is set to go out to friends, family and supporters. The family is hoping to raise $5,000 for the Dialysis Clinic. For his part, Harold Murdock is simply appreciative of his kids’ and grandkids’ enthusiasm for the project. “They’re amazing people and I know that they’re going to make this project a big success”, he said.

About the Lakeshore General Hospital (LGH), hemodialysis and kidney failure in Canada 

  • The LGH recently renovated and expanded the LGH’s hemodialysis unit to provide treatment over and above the 14,000 performed annually at the LGH, including the peritoneal dialysis program, for which the Foundation recently invested in specialized equipment.
  • Every day 12 Canadians, on average, suffer renal failure according to the British Columbia Renal Agency.
  • The Kidney Foundation of Canada reports that 1 in 10 Canadians suffer from some sort of kidney disease.

To support the Dollars for Dialysis project, or if you have questions, please e-mail Debra Murdock at, or simply make a donation directly to the Lakeshore General Hospital Foundation and specifying that it’s for Dollars for Dialysis.  For more information, please contact the Foundation at 514-630-2081.

Pointe Claire music festival returns for a good cause

Pointe Claire (Quebec) – August 18, 2014 – The outdoor street fair and music festival that morphed into an annual tradition in Pointe Claire is back after taking a year off last summer – and this year the revamped BassStock Music Festival will move to a more family-friendly format and join forces with the Lakeshore General Hospital Foundation (LGHF), its co-founder said last week.

The annual event was first born as a street barbecue more than 10 years ago, and after the first edition, organizers thought it might be fun to have a band playing live music, just to add some ambience. The event has grown and grown to the point where more than 2,000 people are expected to show up this year, co-founders and neighbours Dan Lavoie, Fred Herbert and Richard Gurekas said. It was important for the organizers to pick up where they left off in the past after not holding the event for the first time in 11 years last year. The event will begin at 3 p.m.

“Last year, we had a lot of things going on and no one could take up the slack for some of our organizers who couldn’t commit the time last year, but this year we’re back and we’re making a few changes that we feel will increase the number of people coming out to see the show”, said co-founder Dan Lavoie. Those changes include moving the outdoor show to a Sunday, moving up the start time to 3 p.m.  and raising funds for the Lakeshore General Hospital Foundation, Lavoie added. “It’s going to bring a whole new family-friendly dimension to BassStock, and it’s a great way for us to reach out to the community and do some good at the same time. It’s a fun day and the LGHF is a great cause for us to get behind”, he said.

The August 24 concert, which will take place on a stage erected specifically for the event on the green space in the middle of Basswood Circle just east of St. John’s Boulevard and south of Highway 20 in Pointe Claire, will feature nine bands, including headliners on a stage on the green space, the presence of a food truck, a raffle and master of ceremonies Marc Lalonde, the LGHF’s new communications officer. Featured bands are Bad Patch, Pumping Ethyl, The Smog, Joe & The Boys, Pioneer People, Clever Apes, Clay & Friends and The Corsets.

“We thought shaking up the format this year and starting the event earlier in the day might allow some of the band members to play for their families, because when they play in bars, their families may not be able to see them play”, said Herbert, the music co-ordinator for the event.

About 50 volunteers, including the sound man – another neighbour on the small street – will kick in their efforts to bring the show together.

“There are a lot of volunteers and a lot of folks helping out. They don’t get paid. The bands don’t get paid. It’s a real grass-roots operation,” Gurekas said.

Organizers are hoping to raise $1,000 for the Foundation through the raffle and free-will donations.

About the LGHF
Since 1964, the Lakeshore General Hospital Foundation has contributed to a higher standard of equipment and has provided a broader array of patient services than would be possible through government funding alone.  The LGHF is an integral part of the HSSC.

The West Island HSSC at a glance
The West Island HSSC includes the CLSC de Pierrefonds, the CLSC du Lac-Saint-Louis, the Centre d’hébergement Denis-Benjamin-Viger and the Lakeshore General Hospital. Its territory covers the boroughs of Pierrefonds-Roxboro and L’Île-Bizard–Sainte-Geneviève, as well as the municipalities of Baie-D’Urfé, Beaconsfield, Dollard-des-Ormeaux, Kirkland, Pointe-Claire, Sainte-Anne-de-Bellevue and Senneville. The West Island HSSC serves a population of over 220,000 people. No fewer than 2,125 employees and some 250 physicians (generalists and specialists) work in a bilingual environment, with over 500 volunteers. Largest employer in the West Island, the organization is evolving and has the wind in its sails. Its vision is to become an HSSC of Excellence.