All good Rush fans know that Neil Pearl spent his teen years in the Port Dalhousie are of St. Catharines. One of his favourite hangouts was Lakeside Park, something he details in this song from Rush’s third album, Caress of Steel.
Within days of Neil’s death, a Change.org petition was launched, asking for the City of St. Catharines to create some kind of memorial to Neil in the park.
Well, it seems to have paid off. Exactly 25,987 people signed the petition, convincing Mayor Walter Sendzik to put forth a motion on January 27 to have a pavilion in the park after Neil. It’s not a statue (one thing mentioned in the petition) but a plaque on the pavilion will work just fine.
It should be a slam-dunk approval. And it helps that Neil’s family is on board with the whole idea.
Given Neil’s ultra-private nature, this whole gesture would probably have made him cringe. But remember that these sorts of things are done to help the living cope with the loss of a loved one.