In late November 2021, long time Milton resident John Saunders passed away. Two of his local friends, Rob Hewlett and Robin Read Griffin, put their heads together to organize a memorial for John once COVID-19 restrictions were lifted. As Jordan Bassett, GM of East Side Mario’s, was also a friend of John’s it seemed fitting to host the event at East Side Mario’s. On April 24, Milton’s East Side Mario’s restaurant hosted the John Saunders Memorial Fundraising Event. John was quite passionate about donating his time to help others both in Milton and around the world. He served as an inspiration to many to make a difference.

Friends, community members and co-workers gathered to speak about how John impacted their lives and helped others do the same. He loved to give back to the community and lend a helping hand whenever he could. Halton Women’s Place was an organization that was close to his heart; which is why it was chosen to be the benefactor of this memorial celebration.

John was a passionate Karaoke singer, so it seemed fitting to celebrate his life with song and reflections. The singers Cheryl Rak, Jaxx Swadi, Nick Benson, Paul Felix, Rob Hewlett and Tori Wheeler-Wood wowed attendees with their vocal prowess. They are part of the Active Results Collaborative (ARC) group and their “Sing for a Cause” initiative.

Halton Women’s Place was appreciative for the support; “We were honoured to be chosen as the charity of choice at the memorial event of John Saunders at East Side Marios’ Milton yesterday. Thank you to Robin Read Griffin for organizing the awesome event, Belron Canada Inc. for your donation and everyone who donated to and supported Halton Women’s Place on behalf of John!”

At the time of publication, the full total of funds raised was not available; but to date the tally is sitting at $1,745, including the $1000 donation from Belron Canada Inc, and East Side Mario’s will be donating 10% of food sales proceeds from the event.

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