Actualités Faits divers et judiciaire

Salut 2007

The year that was 0

Valerie Furcall

Toutes vos nouvelles locales

As the remaining days of 2007 slip away before a brand new year arrives fresh and full of promise, it is a time of year when we take stock and brand the past year for what it delivered to us. A resumé published in several parts over the upcoming weeks will recall the headlines that made for glad and sad news.

JANUARY

The new year began with an encouraging announcement that a new doctor, Raymond Rezaie, was to join in the local health network.

The Valley's strong agriculture heritage was in evidence as the Bryhill Farms' Bryson family of Ormstown was awarded the highest honour given by the "Outstanding Young Farmers" of Canada program. They received the W.R. Motherwell Award, which recognizes excellence in agriculture.

Former textile mill workers in Huntingdon who after three years following closures still had not re-entered the workforce, were offered free-of-charge job skill training sessions through Emploi-Québec.

The possible drawbacks involving the erection of wind turbines were outlined from an American neighbour's perspective, as hundreds of wind towers that were slated for the border area on the US side have since been put in place. Some Quebec farmers in the region have signed contracts, though specifics were not then known by the Valleyfield Union des producteurs agricole (UPA).

The threat of three elementary school closures (two received a time-limited reprieve; one closed) became an emotionally charged issue as parents and communities galvanized to try and take control of the outcome and ensure their school's survival.

A grim announcement came from the Goodyear Tire & Rubber Company that it was all but completely closing its Valleyfield plant, affecting 800 workers, many of them Valley residents, who would be on the unemployment lines by June.

Wintry weather did not arrive until mid-January, following a warm, wet December.

The Huntingdon Town Council increased its expected revenue in the 2007 budget by $500,000, thanks to the success of the Town's industrial park.

Madrigal Choir began humming to the tune of a new director, George Shnob; Elgin's Kelso Hall reported another successful and varied season of cultural and community events.

Franklin inventor Simon Bourdon told of his ultra-light aircraft built using a snowmobile motor, while a lawn-mower engine powers this 85-year-old's three-wheel motorcycle.

Quebec Fire Fighters Curling Championship played at Riverfield was won by Howick Skip Dale Ness, along with teammates Ken McRae, Ron Ness, and Ashley Craig.

Gleaner free-lance journalist Sarah Rennie shared experiences and insight into life in Johannesburg, South Africa.

While air travellers to the United States now need a passport, Canadians entering by land, and water, need provide birth certificate or photo identification.

The Quebec Government approved Huntingdon for a $1-million grant, spread out over several years, to be available to help new companies become established in Huntingdon's industrial park.

Howick's Shaun Dupont recalled his experiences teaching English as a second-language to Chinese students and encouraged others to apply for available positions.

St-Chrysostome native Dora Bourdeau celebrated her 100th birthday January 30.

FEBRUARY

The Huntingdon Protestant Cemetery trustees shared the story and history of the cemetery from its beginnings in 1884, until present-day times.

Thousands attended a rally to support Goodyear workers.

Huntingdon Council approved Johanne Hébert as the Town's new full-time director general. The council re-initiated recycling services for residents.

The Little Green Library held an Open House at newly-renovated facilities in the former head offices of Cleyn & Tinker. The EBRA Friction brake manufacturing company was one of the new businesses to set up shop in a former Cleyn plant; the Maison Russet Company launched a potato processing operation in another one.

The local Antique Snowmobile Club held its annual ride; Richard Riel won 1st place for the best restored antique.

Doug Sproule and Harley Sproule were presented pins and books for their 40 years in the Huntingdon-Ormstown-Beauharnois Holstein Club.

Huntingdon County Hospital Complex received a positive report concerning the care level in its long-term facility.

Huntingdon's Serge Poirier shared his passion for woodcarving and showed examples of his work.

The Barrie Hospital was closed to visitors during a "flu" outbreak, and there were fears the current shortage of doctors available to cover the emergency department shifts could mean sporadic interruptions in services.

A snowstorm dumping between 15 and 20 cms with wind chills to the -30s socked it to Valley residents.

Krista McCoy and Corri Morison organized a Curling fundraiser in Riverfield for the Heart of Life Fund for sick children.

Dewittville native Corporal Trevor Scott headed to service in Afghanistan.

Suzanne Grosser-Lauder of Hemmingford pleaded guilty as an accessory after the fact in the murder of Shanna Poissant, who had been murdered by her son, Kurt Lauder.

Huntingdon resident Jill Welburn won $500,000 in the Extra! Lottery.

MARCH

Howick resident Taryn Pitre rode in the Chateauguay and Valley Irish Heritage Association's parade as the Queen.

The fate of the historic Turcot Bridge in Tres-St-Sacrement was under discussion as no agency wanted to assume financial responsibility for the out-of-service structure.

A lunar eclipse revealed itself to Valley residents.

Huntingdon councillor Claude Bourassa resigned from municipal politics.

Rene Derome exhibited his photographs of the Quebec political scene, in Huntingdon.

The Huntingdon Council withdrew its membership from the Huntingdon Regional Arena.

Howick equine artist Alyson Champ was elected as an Associate Member of the American Academy of Equine Art.

Elgin boldly banned the use of municipal sewage sludge as farmland fertilizer, and anticipated legal fall-out for its stance.

A Multiple Sclerosis fundraiser "Party of the Year 2" in Huntingdon was the break from the winter doldrums that more than 450 people needed; the event raised around $10,000 for the cause.

The Town of Huntingdon launched its own web site, while the MRC of Haut-St-Laurent also went "online".

Haut St-Laurent Health and Social Services directors continued to strategize to tackle the problem of the doctor shortage, by proposing a healthcare cooperative to attract new staff.

The Ormstown Lions Club built a $7,000 snow slide behind the local Recreation Centre for use by outdoors enthusiasts.

Spring arrived in typical fashion, with ice jams on the Chateauguay River outside of Huntingdon that were broken up by a mechanical "frog".

The St.Pat's Concert in Huntingdon gave everyone something to smile about. Huntingdon native Dwight Baird exhibited his work locally for his Valley fans.

Action Democratique du Québec Party leader Mario Dumont made Huntingdon a stop on the campaign trail; a few days later local candidate Albert de Martin won over long-time Liberal incumbent André Chenail, ushering in a new phase in local politics. The Liberal Party in Quebec returned to power with a minority government.

CVR's Performing Arts Department delighted audiences with an Evening of Humour and Song in a Cabaret-style Coffee House production.

Ormstown Elementary School students jumped for heart and health in the Jump Rope fundraiser, collecting an incredible $6,000 for the cause.

A police officer and former Dewittville native, Constable Scott Pearce, received a Certificate of Valour while serving with the Ottawa/Cartlon, ON, police force. He jumped into the river near the Rideau Falls to try to rescue a teenager.

CEDEC explained its mission of helping the Anglophone community both locally and through networking with other individuals and groups across Quebec.

Dairy farmers proposed resolutions to improve how milk quota is managed.

The on-off-on syrup season saw Ormstown producer Stanley Lalonde boil some of the first in the season's sweet offerings.

The natural talent of up and coming vocalist, Lydia Duheme Sutherland of Godmanchester, was heard in local venues.

CVR students became sensitized to types of bullying and ways to stop it, became a weeklong focus at the Ormstown high school.