The @TPS_Cares team took an icy plunge as part of the Sears Great Canadian Chill at Yonge-Dundas Square.
Superintendent Randy Carter, who took the water as temperatures hovered at -18 Celsius, said it was literally a breathtaking experience.
“It’s wasn’t as cold as I thought it would be, but it absolutely takes your breath away,” Carter said, moments after getting out of the pool surrounded by a cheering crowd inspiring jumpers.
But the greatest inspiration for participants came in the words of Tessa Smith, who spoke about her journey combating cancer.
“Sitting there this morning and hearing about that young lady’s experience and what she’s gone through — this is nothing,” Carter said, of to the teenager who had her leg amputated in her fight with cancer. “She’s still bubbly, bright and interesting; we’re very grateful we could help.”
He said people pay attention to fundraising initiatives police take on.
“We wanted to show that cops care very much about what’s happening in this city,” said Carter, who leads Strategy Management and the Customer Service Team. “It shows that cops can bring attention to problems like this.”
Inspector Chris Boddy brought his daughter, Hannah, out for the second Chill as well as his son, Nick, and his girlfriend Kristin Pountney.
“Everyone knows someone who has been afflicted by cancer and it’s terrible to hear the stories of young people affected by the disease,” Boddy said. “We raised a few dollars and awareness.”
He said his second dip was just as awe-inspiring as the last.
“It’s not any warmer than the first time but it’s a great day,” Boddy said. “You see people from all walks of life doing this for a great cause. It’s a different experience. I encourage everyone to try it at least once, especially for this cause.”
The money raised from the day benefits patient support at the Hospital for Sick Children, such as the Sears Cancer Clinic, and national pediatric oncology research initiatives, such as the Sears Childhood Cancer Fellowship.