Cancer researcher to take icy lake plunge tomorrow

Lisa Porter is well aware of how cold it’s been this week, but is doing everything in her power not to think too much about it. She’ll need all the mental fortitude she can muster when she plunges into the icy waters of Lake Erie tomorrow to help raise money for a children’s cancer support network.

“I’ve been avoiding looking at it,” the biology professor and cancer researcher said when asked if she’s looked at the weekend’s forecast. “I’m not sure I want to know.”

For the record, Environment Canada is predicting a high of only -4 C on Saturday when Dr. Porter and the rest of the parents and coaching staff from her son’s Windsor Minor Hockey Association novice travel hockey team jump in the lake.

The group is taking part in the 13th annual Polar Bear Dip, held annually at the Lakeside Pavilion and Cedar Beach in Kingsville. The event raises funds for ChildCan, a London-based network that provides families with financial, social and emotional support for children who are going through cancer treatment.

Porter, who studies the cellular mechanisms that cause various forms of breast and brain cancers to spread, said one of the boys on her son’s team was treated earlier in his life for neuroblastoma and was well taken care of by the organization.

Porter’s team, The Crazy Canucks, has already raised more than $18,000 towards its goal of $20,000 however the event’s overall efforts are still well below its target of $100,000. Porter said it’s still not too late for people to make donations, or even join in to take part in the plunge.

Registration for the event begins at 11 a.m., and dippers take the plunge at 1 p.m.

Make a donation to the Polar Bear Dip here.