Driving 'em daffy for a cure

17:00, Aug 25 2014
The Heywood family, from left, Matt, Gareth and Judy
HELPING HAND: The Heywood family, from left, Matt, Gareth and Judy help deliver daffodils yesterday for the South Canterbury Cancer Society.

Timaru's Gareth and Matt Heywood know too well the heartache of losing a loved one to cancer.

The brothers, whose father, Kevin Heywood, died at the beginning of this year, joined South Canterbury Vintage Car Club members yesterday to help deliver daffodils to businesses in the region.

Kevin Heywood, who had throat and mouth cancer, was an active member of the car club and started the initiative between the club and the South Canterbury Cancer Society in 2011.

Gareth, 35, and Matt, 21, arrived at the Cancer Society's rooms in Memorial Ave in their father's 1939 Austin 10.

"It's cool to be able to do this for Dad," Gareth said.

Sixteen vintage cars were used in Timaru, and one in Geraldine. In Mid-Canterbury, the Ashburton Vintage Car Club was now on board.


South Canterbury Cancer Society manager Gabrielle Hall said Heywood's initiative saved the not-for-profit organisation more than $1000 each year on couriers.

"Kevin always came up with good ideas and nothing was ever a problem - he was a godsend," she said.

After the 2011 earthquake there was nowhere for South Canterbury people who needed radiotherapy to stay in Christchurch, so Heywood drove a van up and back.

"He did that three times a week for between nine and 11 weeks . . . he made it a fun road trip."

Heywood's wife, Judy, who also volunteered her time yesterday, said her husband loved driving patients around and told her it was the "best job he had ever had".

So far $35,000 has been raised in the region through daffodil sales, with Friday's street appeal to bring in more.

The classic green car, which has been in the Heywood family for 35 years, was handed down to Gareth.

"It's an emotional day and I am so proud of the boys," Judy said.

The Timaru Herald