BANGOR – A trek through the woods honored a local man who passed away of cancer, and the walk raised money to help families in similar situations.
Family and friends of Brewer native Jimmy Garland trekked through 4 miles of the Bangor City Forest on Sunday morning.
The walk was organized to celebrate Garland’s life and love for nature after he lost a battle with pancreatic cancer last year.
“He’s holding off the rain for us,” said Kris Lovley, an event organizer and family friend. “Just enough time for us to have a nice walk in the woods.”
Those who knew Garland said he went hiking or camping every weekend, so a walk on the East West Loop in the Bangor City Forest was the perfect way to remember him around his birthday.
“He was a very outdoorsy kind of guy and taught me everything I know, so this was kind of in remembrance of him,” said Lovley.
The wilderness trek raised money for the Purple Iris Foundation’s Maine Cancer Outdoor Adventure Program that sends local families impacted by cancer camping and to other outdoor activities to get some adventure relief.
Garland’s sons, Joshua and Michael, said they appreciate the community’s continued support and the help they got when their father was sick.
“They helped us out a lot with our family…sent us on trips to go on adventures with my dad,” said Joshua.
“It teaches you a lot about yourself, the outdoors, different hikes, white water rafting, it teaches a lot about what you got inside,” said Christina Parrish, who is the founder of the Purple Iris Foundation and has battled cancer herself.
The $15 registration fee is going to help other families like the Garlands, and celebrate a man whose family members said was always moving on to the next adventure.
“It just brings back the memory of him. Every time I’m outdoors doing something adventurous, I just think of him,” said Joshua Garland.