Rush announced that they are donating the $40,000 award they're getting from the Allan Slaight Humanitarian Spirit Award to the Gord Downie Fund for Brain Cancer Research at Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre, in honor of the Tragically Hip frontman. Downie recently played his final shows with the band after being diagnosed with a rare and incurable form of brain cancer.
"We are pleased to direct this generous donation from the Allan Slaight Humanitarian Award to the Gord Downie Fund for Brain Cancer Research at Sunnybrook," the band announced in a Facebook post on Wednesday (Nov. 30). "Many families have been affected either directly or indirectly by this terrible disease. Through Gord's courageous efforts this cause is now getting the attention it desperately deserves. As a fellow musician and friend it's our turn to help support his efforts to fight Brain Cancer now."
Earlier this month Canadian Music Week announced that Rush were the 2017 recipients of the Slaight award, which will be handed out in April; the award comes with a $40,000 prize earmarked for the charity of the recipient's choice.
"We are thrilled to learn Rush has made such a donation," Dr. James Perry, head of neurology at Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre said in a statement on Rush's website. "The Gord Downie Fund for Brain Cancer Research will help give us the tools we need to find ways to treat the untreatable. Right now we are investigating new drugs, surgical techniques and genetic therapies. We are using ultrasound to reach tumours that couldn't be reached before. The funds so generously donated by RUSH will support us as we continue our pioneering work, to the benefit of brain cancer patients not only across Canada but around the world."