The message posted January 10th, 2015 on Tim Monteith’s Facebook page read, “Well today’s the day ladies and gents. A reminder still trying to collect donations for Margaret’s family. We will be set up at the mall across from south Tim Hortons. We should have a decent amount of trucks there from a few groups. So please come on down, say hi and bring this lovely family a donation.”
More than 24 trucks from Berta Boy/Berta Babes group (truck club) responded by assembling in an impressive line-up stretching across the entire parking lot of the Wetaskiwin Mall. Members came from all directions and as far away as Whitecourt to participate in a charity meet to help a local (Naturkach) family that lost a husband and father in a tragic car accident on January 2nd, 2015.
Tim Monteith and Keegan Elder are two local Berta Boy/Berta Babes members that helped organize the fundraiser by using Facebook to communicate with their networks and posting, “Hey Guys and Gals. The Berta Boys/Berta Babes are looking for more trucks to join a convoy to support a family in Wetaskiwin at a hard time. This woman has lost her husband and the two wonderful kids have lost their dad due to a bad car accident by Olds (Olds, AB). We are trying to collect donations to help out the family as the wife was a stay at home mom and doesn’t work right at the moment. We are trying to collect enough donations to help her out during [their] grieving period until she can stand on her own two feet,” and, “We are meeting in Wetaskiwin at the mall parking lot on the south side of town @ 11:30 am. At 12:20 we are all going to convoy over to the church to drive by and give our donations. Any support big or small will help. Hope to see you there. Thanks.”
And meet they did. Trucks rolled into the mall parking lot in support of an important cause. During the meeting the Berta Boy/Berta Babes members raised over $1100 with the support of group members and the community. The Naturkach family invited the Berta Boy/Berta Babes group to drive by the Full Gospel Church before the service.
“The group members were touched by the sight of the family watching them from the church windows.” They then followed the Naturkach family to the final resting place.
The group would like to thank all the members that participated and supported the cause. They are also very grateful to the community for their generous and important support and the local RCMP members for their help and support to ensure a safe trip from the mall to the church. Tim Monteith commented later that evening on Facebook, “Once again we are sorry for your loss. We all are very deeply touched from this experience. We all are so glad that we could do this for you and the family. And also happy we could shed a little light on the situation. Are thoughts and prayers are with you and family and friends at this time. God bless you for allowing us to do this for you.”
Berta Boys/Berta Babes is an Albertan Truck group founded by Josh Lamire from Wetaskiwin and currently has 681 members on Facebook.
Sharlene M. Fudge-Newman, wife of Full Gospel’s Pastor Greg, also Facebooked that evening, “Thanks to all who showed support today and in the last few days for my dear friend Margaret Naturkach and her family. The windows at the church were lined with family and friends who were watching as each truck went by. Margaret braved the cold and wanted to watch up front and outside with some family. A huge thanks to (Tim) and all those who showed up to drive in the convoy regardless of snow. Another big Thanks to the Wetaskiwin RCMP for stopping traffic, Ryan would of been so proud! …Thanks so much.”
Sharlene summed it up by stating, “The family is overwhelmed with the love and support from the community and surrounding areas. Her and the family hold strong to their faith during this difficult time.”
You can still help. For those who were unable to attend the ‘truck meet and convoy’ and would like to help this young family, donations can be made online at http://www.gofundme.com/jmjef0.
Pictured: Tim Monteith used Facebook to help assemble an impressive group of caring individuals to help support a local family during a time of loss. Photo by Barry McDonald. See more photos in this week’s paper.