LITTLE CURRENT – During its annual honours and awards night, Branch 177 of the Royal Canadian Legion in Little Current was pleased to acknowledge many of its hardest working and longest serving members, including Legionnaire of the Year Lucy Sagle.
The event was hosted by past president Debbie Menard who welcomed everyone to the pre-Christmas event and began by offering a moment of silence to the comrades lost in 2019, WWII veterans Blair Sullivan and Allan Tustian.
“While Legionnaire of the Year is to be bestowed upon the person’s endeavours towards the betterment of the Legion in the last year, it also gives recognition to the member’s dedication and commitment to the Legion,” Comrade Menard began. “Tonight, it will be awarded to a member who has been doing as such for a couple of years. It is with great pleasure and honour to name Comrade Lucy Sagle as Legionnaire of the Year.”
Ms. Menard explained that Ms. Sagle has been a member for two years but has been lending a hand at Legion functions for several years previously, including helping with spaghetti and steak dinners, cooking wings, barbecuing at the Canada Day Summer Fair, working funeral luncheons, helping at dances, working the door and bartending.
Ms. Sagle sits on the executive committee and holds the position of entertainment chair.
“She puts on a variety of different meals on a monthly basis rather than the usual spaghetti suppers we used to host,” Ms. Menard said. “She is a very good cook! She makes up the flyers for upcoming events and then posts them around town and on our website. With some events, she fundraises for prizes.”
“Lucy does an excellent job with the entertainment aspect of the branch whereupon it brings out a lot of community members to the branch,” Ms. Menard continued. “She is very personable and is always smiling…I once said of her during the awards ceremony that she came here to a dance one year and never looked back. Now she is fully committed and is beginning to set roots. Your endeavours are very much appreciated, Lucy!”
Comrade Menard also presented two special awards during the evening ceremony.
Comrade Marcel Gauthier was awarded a Branch Service Medal recognizing significant volunteer and service work.
“Comrade Marcel has 22 years of Legion service, joining the branch in 1997,” Ms. Menard said. “He retired as a school teacher in the year 2000. In 2001 he started the public speaking contests whereupon he went to the various schools, encouraging the students to participate in the contests.”
Ms. Menard went on to note Mr. Gauthier’s work with the Legion Remembrance Day poster contests and his work as youth and education chair “for all these years.”
“Your commitment and dedication is greatly appreciated, Marcel!” Ms. Menard concluded.
Comrade Tom Stephens, a Legion Life Member, was also awarded a Branch Service Medal.
Mr. Stephens joined the Legion in 1975 as an Associate Member and over the years has worked as a bartender, sat on the executive committee, helped with renovations and fish frys, steak dinners and barbecues, cooks wings on wing nights and is currently the Legion’s go-to fix-it man.
“Tom has shown complete dedication to Branch 177 for 44 years,” Ms. Menard continued. “His input with Legion endeavours for the betterment of the branch are truly very apparent and appreciated by the members of the branch.”
Ms. Menard also handed out Certificates of Appreciation to Country 103 and Craig and Kelly Timmermans for announcing Legion events and functions; Gerald Hensen for the donation of a bar foot rail; Lois Keller for her willingness to help out at any Legion endeavour; Melissa Lemaire for her work on painstakingly repainting the Legion logo on the front door; and Brian Morrison, the Legion’s main ‘fixer upper,’ for revamping the Legion storage room and redoing the bar with the help of Spike Eadie and Mr. Stephens.
Certificates of Merit were also presented to Ted Bemister, Kari Bourque, UCCM Castle Building Supply and Joyce Clarke.
The evening concluded with the handing out of pins for years of service.
“It is truly an honour to pay tribute to those who give so much time and efforts in supporting the Legion branch,” Ms. Menard said. “This occasion is a true demonstration of how vital our comrades, volunteers, the media and community area businesses are to the Legion. Your dedication and continued support benefits our veterans, their families, our youth and the community itself.”