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Walk for a Cure Results Triple With Help From Trucking Biz

MONCTON, N.B. - Over $100,000 was raised this past June at the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation's (JDRF) Walk for a Cure in Moncton, N.B.Armour Transportation Systems played a special role in the...


FAMILY MATTERS: Angus Armour (left) and his brother Ralston (right) are a big factor in Armour Transportation Systems running so smoothly.
FAMILY MATTERS: Angus Armour (left) and his brother Ralston (right) are a big factor in Armour Transportation Systems running so smoothly.

MONCTON, N.B. – Over $100,000 was raised this past June at the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation’s (JDRF) Walk for a Cure in Moncton, N.B.

Armour Transportation Systems played a special role in the walk, contributing $60,000 of the grand total.

Founded by Gordon Armour in the early 1930s, Armour Transportation has since remained a family owned and operated business. Wesley Armour, Gordon’s son, joined the company in the 1960s and is currently CEO and president.

Wesley’s wife, Pat, is vice-president of Armour Leasing, his eldest son, Angus is vice-president of Armour Logistics, his other son, Ralston, is vice-president of City Wide Courier, and perhaps in time, his 13-year-old daughter, Victoria, will join the team as well.

Angus Armour was slated to be chairman of this year’s Walk for a Cure and had set an ambitious agenda with JDRF coordinator, Kim Halliday, establishing lofty fundraising goals.

But he was unable to fulfill his duties after he fell into a diabetes-related coma in January, from which he hasn’t yet recovered.

“Wesley and I had talked it over and we agreed that we definitely wanted to carry on because it was something that Angus had decided to do,” said Pat Armour. “It was something you knew you had to do for your son and for your family, it was something you just wouldn’t not do.”

So, Halliday and Pat Armour outlined what they felt was attainable in the limited time they had before the June 1 event.

Pat Armour said Halliday was so well prepared she had everything down to a science.

“Kim is such a good organizer, I never had to worry if I had to speak at a corporate breakfast or at the Rotary Club or something because I knew everything would be set up perfectly,” said Pat Armour. “She is just such a wonderful person, we had a lot of great laughs.”

The positive feelings were mutual.

“I could say a million wonderful things about Pat Armour, she is a very strong and determined person, her whole family is very strong, for that matter. They were all at each of the events leading up to the walk and their enthusiasm and support was felt by everyone,” said Halliday.

Armour Transportation Systems decided to focus on raising funds for JDRF this past spring, which was very well received, said Pat Armour.

“We got a committee together and then tried to get as many people involved as we could in raising as much money as we could for research. Everybody on the committee took a section of the company and all the terminals across the Atlantic region got in on the act too,” said Armour.

The committee organized auctions, and barbecues and raffled off perks like a week off with pay, all as part of fundraising efforts, as well as purchasing 500 red t-shirts for the Armour team at the walk event, all of which were doled out.

“It was a complete sea of red at the event and the response was amazing. There was huge enthusiasm throughout the company, and people in every corner of the company and in every corner of the Maritimes, for that matter, showing their support, it was truly phenomenal,” said Armour.

She said knowing there were people out there that she didn’t personally know, sending notes of encouragement and donations, acted as a large part of her motivation.

“We would just shake our heads because Wesley would come home from work at night with e-mails from company members, or personal checks that had been mailed in, and we have been receiving beautiful notes from other transportation companies and industry members from across Canada saying how much they are interested in our situation,” she said.

“As business people you meet others on a business level all of the time, but when we hear from these same people and know they are feeling such a personal closeness and interest in this, it is just amazing,” Pat Armour added.

One in 13 Canadians have diabetes, she added.

“Everybody knows someone with diabetes and it wasn’t hard to get people to help out because everybody knows how important it is to find a cure,” Armour said.

Evidently the Canadian trucking industry united, not only to help find a cure, but to help its friend and colleague on the East Coast.

“Suppliers and partners across Canada were calling and asking how they could assist, and other trucking companies sent donations for the Armour campaigns,” said Halliday. “Everybody was behind this project, they really put their heart and souls behind it.”

The Associated Trades Council of the Atlantic Province’s Trucking Association donated its time and efforts to supporting the JDRF and the Armour family by donating proceeds from a traditional Atlantic lobster dinner at the 2003 Atlantic Truck Show towards JDRF.

Pat Armour said another source of inspiration for her was from her family.

“It has been quite an experience for both sides of our family. Everybody has been brought closer together by the kindness and support we have been receiving throughout our ongoing adventure,” said Pat Armour.

To find out how to make a donation to the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation contact the national office toll-free at 877 CURE-533, or e-mail general@jdrf.ca

To make a donation to the Moncton chapter call Kim Halliday at 506-853-0507.

If you would like to contact Armour Transportation Systems, visit www.armour.ca, or call the Moncton headquarters 506-857-0205.


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