Meet Myrtle Jouffret
Myrtle Jouffret was unstoppable in her quest to support local causes like the Walk for Alzheimer’s.
She invested hours of time and effort into fundraising, and it sure paid off. Myrtle brought in tens of thousands of dollars over the two decades she took part in the walk.
“She wanted to make a difference, so she really dedicated herself over the years to doing anything and everything she could to support the Alzheimer Society,” said Myrtle’s daughter Mary Ellen Weatherhead.
Though Myrtle passed away in 2014, she will be honoured with a spot on the Walker Wall of Fame. And rightly so - she was one of the most committed fundraisers ever, despite never having used the organization’s services herself.
“She knew that at any time she could be a client. She also thought of myself and (her) two other girls, she knew that we could be clients at any point in time,” Mary Ellen said.
“No one is immune to dementia.”
Myrtle was absolutely unstoppable as she filled up pledge sheets. One year she singlehandedly raised $8,000.
“It wasn’t unusual to see mom standing on the corner of Wellington and Dundas streets, or down at the market with a table set up, just approaching strangers,” Mary Ellen said. “Even if she could only get a toonie here and a loonie there, she knew that it all added up and made a difference.”
Perhaps even more importantly, Myrtle did her best to pass along the same selfless spirit to others, her daughter said.
“She made people appreciate that any amount – large or small – all made a difference. You always walked away from her knowing ‘oh, I did something good.’”
And Myrtle always took her causes – the Walk for Alzheimer’s was one of many – seriously.
“She almost treated it like it was a little business. She contacted pretty much every business in the community…but she didn’t miss the individuals, either,” Mary Ellen said.
And as a result, the annual fundraising “thank you” token – Walk memorabilia, if you will – was important to Myrtle.
“She had her teddy bears from the Alzheimer Society nicely displayed on the back of her couch, and she could tell you which year each teddy bear came from,” her daughter recalled.
The powerhouse fundraiser was raising money, and walking laps, into her nineties.
“She certainly became an inspiration to myself and to a lot of people that she touched along the way,” Mary Ellen said.
Myrtle Jouffret participates in the Woodstock Walk.