Hundreds of people filled Minnehaha Bay in Sturgeon Falls for a candlelight vigil on Monday, April 4, to show their support for the Royer family.
Kimberly Royer passed away from cancer on April 2.
She was a co-owner of Twiggs Coffee Roasters at Minnehaha Bay with her husband, Adam.
Yvon Renaud, a family friend and owner of Y & R Hair Design organized the vigil.
“It was tragic news for the community of Sturgeon Falls,” he says. “It was something that we weren’t expecting, especially when it’s somebody so young and so vibrant and did so many things for the community. Kim was always there for anything or any organization, any team that needed fundraising… An amazing person and everybody loved her. Her smile would brighten every room.”
Renaud says he organized the event to try and take the burden off of Adam and family.
“I knew that everybody in the community was grieving, and it was a shock to everyone,” he says. “We needed something so we can all come together and grieve together, without having to run to Adam.”
Restaurant employees and others shared memories, stories, and songs and Renaud says there wasn’t a dry eye around.
“Everybody was overwhelmed how the staff was like a family to Kim. Having all the support from everybody and seeing the great turnout was overwhelming, ” he said.
Renaud says Kim and Adam made Minnehaha Bay what it is today.
“It’s something Kim always made sure of. She made people feel welcomed when they came into her establishment. Her smile made everyone want to return to Twiggs to see her staff, herself, and what she made of the place,” says Renaud. “I want to thank everybody that came out for this great evening. It was overwhelming. I’m glad I was able to share this with the family, Adam and everybody in the community of West Nipissing.”
A GoFundMe has been organized to help the family. In 24 hours, over $20,000 has been raised.