10 years ago, Bill Werthmann was faced with every parent’s nightmare: their 20 year old daughter Hillary had committed suicide. Everything had seemed normal. Good parents, stable home life and a loving family.
“We froze up” said Bill. “My wife and I grieved and we tried to move on. We thought about the young people out there who are in such pain, yet are unable to seek help even from their closest friends. On the 10th anniversary of her passing, I decided to tear open the story and travel to as many places as I could to raise awareness and funds for suicide education and prevention”. Visit Hillary’s Ride for Mental Health Web Site
May 7 some of Canada’s top performers are donating their time to the cause. 7:30 pm at the Alix Goolden Hall, see emerging stars West My Friend and Rosie June plus Rick Scott, Valdy and Roy Forbes. Tickets are $28 in advance $35 at the door. Royal McPherson Box Office or Lyles’s Place. May 8 Bill and two others are heading out from Mile Zero to cycle across Canada, putting on concerts with his many folk and roots friends to get the word out and raise funds and support for local organizations. In Victoria Need 2 is the co-presenter.
Bill is a very well-known figure on the Canadian Folk and Roots music scene, and heads up the Northern Lights Folk Club in Edmonton. Performers throughout Canada are lining up to volunteer their support for Hillary’s Ride. The ride will go from km 0 in Victoria through 6850 exhausting km over 68 days ending in Cape Spear, St. John’s Newfoundland. This will require determination and perseverance of Bill and his cycling companions Terry Fannon and Sue Sohnle.
“The ride will encourage conversation about depression, suicide and other mental health issues affecting youth and young adults” said Bill.
Photo from the Hillary’s Ride for Mental Health Web Site