Leisure and Lifestyle

On the Road 4 Mental Health: A Journey of Hope and Awareness

McPherson Family Leads Walk to Raise Awareness about Mental Health and Addiction Crisis

Toronto – The McPherson family, spurred by personal tragedy, is embarking on a journey of hope and awareness with On the Road 4 Mental Health. Founded in 2022 by Greg and Aaron McPherson in memory of their son and brother, Aric, and his friend Madeleine Soroczan-Wright, the initiative aims to shine a light on the mental health and toxic drug crisis that has affected countless lives.

This year, the walk will kick off from Niagara Falls, Ontario, with Greg leading the charge alongside his adult children, Aaron and Kaelan, and anyone else who wishes to join them. The starting line holds special significance as it’s where Aric took a selfie on May 19, 2018, posting a message of hope to his Facebook page with the American Falls in the background.

The journey will span 600 kilometers over 14 days, passing through communities ravaged by the mental health and addiction crisis. Along the way, various events are planned to raise awareness and honor those who have been lost. Niagara Falls will be illuminated in green for mental health and purple for overdose awareness on May 18, while the Brant Street Pier in Burlington will host an informal gathering on May 20, lit up in recognition of On the Road 4 Mental Health.

One of the highlights will be the “Next Stop Ajax: On the Road 4 Mental Health” event at the Ajax Town Hall on May 23, featuring booths from local mental health organizations and a platform for community engagement.

The walk will culminate with speakers from mental health and addiction organizations addressing the crisis at Major’s Hill Park in Ottawa on June 1.

“This isn’t just a walk; it’s a movement,” says Greg McPherson. “We want to remember those we’ve lost and celebrate those who have won their battle for mental health.”

The event’s website, www.otr4mentalhealth.com, provides route information, itinerary, a live tracker to follow Greg’s progress, historical information, and details about supporters and sponsors.


On the Road 4 Mental Health is a poignant reminder of the devastating impact of mental health and addiction issues on individuals, families, and communities. The McPherson family’s dedication to turning their grief into action is commendable, and their initiative serves as a beacon of hope for those struggling with similar challenges.

By raising awareness, fostering community engagement, and advocating for change, On the Road 4 Mental Health is not only honoring the memories of those lost but also working towards preventing future tragedies. It’s a reminder that mental health is a collective responsibility, and initiatives like these play a crucial role in breaking down stigma and promoting access to support and resources.

As the walk progresses, let’s rally behind the McPherson family and all those involved in this important cause. Together, we can make a difference in the lives of those affected by mental health and addiction issues.

Tiana Squire

Tiana Squire is our Leisure and Lifestyle Writer, dedicated to covering a wide array of topics including restaurants & bars, fashion, travel and tourism, family events and entertainment. With a passion for exploring and sharing the best in leisure experiences, Tiana brings her unique perspective and enthusiasm to each piece she writes. For inquiries or feedback, contact Tiana at tiana.squire@gtaweekly.ca.

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