Special to the Chronicle
Longtime Oliver residents Erwin and Trudy Weiler were recently presented with certificates acknowledging their long service to various cancer projects. Unfortunately Trudy was unable to attend due to illness, so Erwin accepted on her behalf.
Trudy has given over 30 years of voluntary service to the Canadian Cancer Society, and Erwin has been involved for over 20. Both are members of the Order of the Eastern Star, and Erwin is a member of Southern Gate Masonic Lodge.
The Freemasons of BC buy, maintain and drive the passenger vans which take patients to Kelowna for treatments five days each week. Once purchased, the vans are turned over to the Canadian Cancer Society and are used solely for the purpose of transferring patients.
The large white vans with the Cancer Society’s emblem of a daffodil and Masonic emblem of square and compass, can be seen daily on its journey, which operates from Osoyoos to Kelowna. The patients have treatments that last from 10 days to six weeks, depending on the type of treatment they require, so this free service is well appreciated by those who are transported.
Arranging daily drivers is quite a chore and Erwin has coordinated the Oliver drivers since the vans were first used in this area, over 20 years ago.
Erwin, centre of photo, was presented certificates by Kelowna head coordinator Dick Audy, third from left and Chuck Guild, master of the Oliver Masonic lodge, second from left. With them are other local cancer car drivers. The van drivers are usually masons but any person can volunteer to drive the vans.
Anyone needing this free service will have arrangements made for them at the Kelowna Cancer Lodge.