Lemire creates charity print to honor Gord Downie

Proceeds benefit the charity the Tragically Hip frontman helped found and support, the Downie Wenjack fund.

Jeff Lemire teamed up with Gord Downie, lead singer of the Tragically Hip, last year for a multimedia project that told the story of Chanie “Charlie” Wenjack, an Ojibwa boy who died of exposure and hunger back in the 1960s. The Secret Path included poems, songs and a graphic novel, with proceeds from sales going to The Gord Downie Secret Path Fund.

Downie passed away from brain cancer earlier this month, and Lemire reflects on his blog about his friendship with him.

“He would visit every couple weeks and I would show him my drawings. We would laugh and talk and somewhere in there, there was even a 400km snowmobile ride in arctic temperatures, a hockey game in a hotel room in Timmins, and because of him I finally got to fulfill my teenaged dream of joining a rock band, even though I can’t play any instruments,” Lemire wrote. “He had a way about him that made it feel like we’d known each other for years. I miss him now and I will always miss him.”

In honor of his friend, Lemire has created a print that’s now available on The Pushpin. Proceeds from the sale of the print will benefit the Downie Wenjack fund, which supports cross-cultural education between indigenous and non-indigenous peoples in Canada.

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