Farm family gives back to Windsor Regional Hospital

Members of the Lafferty family present a cheque to the Windsor Regional Hospital foundation during a media event on October 16, 2020. Photo submitted by Windsor Regional Hospital.

Their corn stand has been a fixture near Windsor Airport since the mid-1970s, but a local farming family is giving back to the new owners of the land surrounding it.

The Lafferty family, who operate the corn stand at the corner of the 9th Concession and Highway 42, announced a $50,000 donation to the Windsor Regional Hospital Foundation that will go toward the planning and building of the region’s new acute-care hospital.

The cheque presentation took place on Friday morning, at the same time the hospital announced it had officially bought the 60-acres of land at the location for the new hospital after five years of planning.

“The generosity of the Lafferty Family not only reflects the family’s values of kindness and compassion toward the community they call home but also demonstrates the importance of this project,” said Beth Ann Prince, president of the WRH Foundation. “We are truly grateful to the Lafferty family for this significant donation.”

The land was owned by the O’Keefe family before it was turned over to the hospital, but the family had allowed its longtime friends, the Laffertys, to build a corn stand at the location. Lafferty, 86, who has been a farmer for over six decades, said he is happy to have a chance to give back.

“Our family is very thankful to Windsor and Essex County’s support of our business and would like to give back to the hospital,” said Lafferty.

Lafferty has been known in the region for his community service, which included providing summer jobs to local students, and as a contributor to the Unemployed Help Centre’s Plentiful Harvest Food Rescue Program.

The hospital is currently not soliciting donations for the new acute-care facility, but Lafferty has been in favour of the hospital location from the beginning and is hopeful his family’s contribution will get things rolling.

“Someone has to start,” said Lafferty.