Cross-Canada trip for Wish Foundation hits Sudbury on June 21
Art Brochu started cycling seriously five years ago, at the age of 65.
A few months after his 70th birthday, he started a cross-Canada cycling trip to raise funds for the Children's Wish Foundation, an organization that grants wishes to children diagnosed with life-threatening illnesses.
Brochu spent most of his adult life in the military, where he witnessed the ravages of war and conflict in the Middle East, Cyprus and Eastern Europe during the 1960s.
“What always got to me was how the kids suffered over there,” Brochu said.
After his retirement, he was determined to help children, but didn't know how to go about it.
In 2008, he was introduced to the Children's Wish Foundation at a charity golf tournament. He wanted to support the organization after that first meeting, but still did not know how he could best contribute his time and effort.
The next year, Brochu met Lori-Ann Muenzer, a track cyclist who won Canada its only gold medal in the sport at the 2004 Summer Olympics in Athens, Greece.
Muenzer encouraged Brochu — who's body had taken a beating after a career in the military — to take up cycling.
He fell in love with the sport, and eventually started training with Muenzer, who taught him proper technique and helped him work on his endurance.
On May 1, 2014, Brochu started a cross-Canada trip in Port Hardy, B.C.
By June 11, he had cycled some 3,500 kilometres to Thunder Bay.
He is scheduled to spend a few days in Sudbury starting June 21.
While in the city, Brochu will speak at Royal Canadian Legion Branch 76 about the Children's Wish Foundation and the importance of leading a healthy lifestyle. That talk is set for June 21 at the branch's 1553 Weller Street location, starting at 6 p.m.
Brochu's goal is to raise enough money to fund one child's wish in each province. With each wish costing around $10,000, he's looking to raise $100,000.
To donate to Brochu's initiative visit www.childrens-wish.ca/artcyclesforwishes.