Movement underway to rename park after late musician Jeff Healey
According to Inside Toronto, a movement is growing in Etobicoke to rename Woodford Park after late musician and Etobicoke resident Jeff Healey. Former bandmate and childhood friend Rob Quail is the organizing force behind the proposal. He feels that renaming Woodford to commemorate his friend will allow Healey’s memory to live on in the same community where the musician grew up and spent his adult life raising a family. Part of this movement includes fundraising—with a possible benefit concert—that will go toward installing equipment for the visually impaired, since Healey himself was blind.
Etobicoke-Lakeshore city councillor Peter Milczyn is also on board with the project. “I think he’s an individual that residents of Etobicoke are very proud of, and it’s appropriate to memorialize something in his honour,” Milczyn told Inside Toronto. Councillor Milczyn added that Healey loved Etobicoke deeply. A Juno winner and acclaimed guitarist, Healey grew up on Bonnyview Drive, next to the park, and eventually moved back to his childhood neighbourhood to raise a family with his wife, Cristie.
Over 300 comments regarding the renaming were received by the city as of the March 1, 2011 deadline, and Milczyn says there have been more positive than negative responses so far. Milczyn’s staff will report findings from community members and make recommendations to the Etobicoke-York Community Council in April, after which a decision will be made about renaming the park. Healey passed away in 2008 after a three-year battle with cancer.