Police inspector to go 'stacheless for the right price
RCMP Insp. Kevin Murray will shave it off for cancer fundraiser
Saturday, Feb 22, 2014 06:00 am
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For a good cause and a hefty chunk of change, St. Albert’s RCMP inspector is willing to brave a bare upper lip.
Insp. Kevin Murray has pledged himself and his moustache for Bellerose Composite High School’s 11th annual Bike-A-Thon.
The fundraising goal for this year’s 48-hour indoor cycling event running from March 5 to 7 is $150,000. All proceeds go to the Kids with Cancer Society and the Alberta Cancer Foundation.
If the St. Albert RCMP team raises $10,000, Murray will shave off his iconic ’stache.
“You get known for something and I’ve been known for my moustache,” said Murray, who has been sporting his cookie duster for as long as he can remember.
He has gone to great lengths to protect his prized facial fur over the years, offering up his chest hair in its place as a fundraising incentive for the Canadian Cancer Society Cops for Cancer Tour de Rock ride on Vancouver Island.
“It was a bit of an itchy two-week ride as it grew back,” Murray admitted. “I really didn’t want to shave off my moustache.”
The only other time he risked facial hair was for a Cops for Cancer event in Kimberley, B.C. in 1998. Donors pledged more than $1,000 to see it go.
Murray thought a $10,000 price hike would deter his colleagues from asking again, but instead it “fuelled their desire to make that happen.”
“In the end it will grow back,” he noted. “And it is a pretty small sacrifice compared to those that are actually experiencing cancer and having to go through the treatments and the recovery.”
This is the first year the St. Albert RCMP will be participating as a team in the Bike-A-Thon.
Const. M-J Burroughs, team captain and school resource officer for Bellerose, has been riding on the same team as the teachers for the last three years.
The Edmonton Iron Man Team, whose participants consist of members from the Edmonton Police Service, have been involved in the event since it started, she noted. This year she figured the detachment could contribute differently for the Bike-A-Thon’s “Million Dollar Year.”
“I thought it was important to have the local police service in St. Albert support the school and students for such an amazing and worthwhile cause,” she said in an email to the Gazette.
Murray added the event would be a “great galvanizing opportunity” for both officers and support staff.
“We’ve had a few people within our detachment support staff impacted by cancer. Some personally, some family members. It touches everybody, so I think this is a great way to show support for them.”
To date, 30 RCMP officers and support staff have signed up to be on the team. Each has been assigned to a one-hour time slot for the ride.
Last year 82 teams (800 students) pedalled their hearts out and raised $266,500. Since 2004, donations have totalled more than $970,000.
So far, the St. Albert RCMP team has raised $300. If they reach their goal of $10,000 Murray will have his moustache shaved off on March 6 at Bellerose.