President Richard, distinguished Head table, fellow Kiwanians and guests, it is a great Honour for me to preside over today’s Legion of Honour ceremony.
The Legion of Honour was established by Kiwanis International to recognize those members who have demonstrated, over a significant period of time, their commitment to their community, their country and those in need around the world. Members who have served for 25 years or more in Kiwanis, and this can be with several clubs, are welcomed into the Legion of Honour. As they reach additional five-year increments, we again recognize their continuing interest in Kiwanis. Naturally, some reach an age when active participation is no longer possible, yet they maintain their relationship, because Kiwanis means so much to them, as they have meant so much to Kiwanis.
Today we are welcoming one new member into the Legion of Honour and recognizing 11 others for reaching 30 or more years of service with Kiwanis. This afternoon in a very limited time, I would like to introduce these 12 members to you. As I introduce each of them, you will see that from very diverse backgrounds they have come together in this Club to enhance the cause of those in need. These members provide this Club with a living history which ensures that its traditions are respected, and our commitment to being the premiere service club in Canada is upheld.
To help all of us appreciate the magnitude of their commitment I thought it would be interesting to briefly describe Canada at the time when they joined Kiwanis.
Jim Durrell - 25 years
Twenty five years ago when Jim Durrell joined Kiwanis, the Canadian dollar dropped below 90 cents U.S. for the first time, the Toronto Blue Jays won their first regular season game, Via Rail was created and Quebec's Bill 101 was introduced. Jim, would you please stand. Jim was introduced to our Club in 1977 by former member Peter Bergen. When I spoke with Jim about Kiwanis he immediately recalled two events, one of which was his first Kiwanis meeting. His feeling of apprehension was quickly overcome by the fellowship of Harry Brown, a past President and member of our Hall of Fame. I know that Jim has returned this favour many times to new members who have followed after him. The second event was our very successful Grey Cup party in 1988. As Mayor of the City of Ottawa Jim was a key player in bringing the Grey Cup game to Ottawa and a $100,000 fundraiser to our Club. Jim has been a strong community leader and I know that Jim’s life has been enriched by Kiwanis in many ways. Jim, as our newest Legion of Honour member, I would ask you to come forward to receive your certificate.
Thirty years ago, in 1972, Kiwanis was the benefactor of three new members who are with us today. Of lesser significance, in 1972 Canada won its historic hockey tournament against the Soviet Union, oil was discovered in Canada's North, and Canada's sailors received their last daily ration of rum.
Frank Hegyi - 30 years
Frank Hegyi, would you please stand. Although Frank rejoined our Club in 1994, this year marks his 30th anniversary as a Kiwanian. Frank has been a member of the Lakeshore Kiwanis Club in Sault St. Marie, a member of the Gordon Head Club in Victoria, B.C. where he was Area Administrator of the Pacific North West District Key Clubs for 5 years and, of course, a member of the Kiwanis Club of Ottawa. While a member of the Gordon Head Kiwanis Club in Victoria he served as their President in 1981/82. He went on to become Lt. Governor of The Pacific Northwest District in 1984/85 and District Governor in 1990/1991. Frank has cherished his role as a mentor of Circle K Club members. Under his careful guidance two members from his Circle K District went on to become International Presidents. Over the years Frank has also been an active member of the Duck Race Committee. For your 30 years of service to Kiwanis Clubs across Canada, please come forward, Frank, to receive your 30-year Legion of Honour Certificate.
Doug Legere - 30 years
Our next 30-year member, Doug Legere, was introduced to us by Gary Armstrong. Doug, would you please stand. When I spoke with Doug he recalled with pride the Royal visit of Prince Charles and Lady Diana to one of our Kiwanis luncheons when Doug was our Club’s President in 1982/1983. Doug has been a very active member for all of his 30 years with our Kiwanis Club and for 22 years of those years he had perfect attendance. Perhaps I can sum up his enthusiasm for Kiwanis this way. After completing his presidential year he received the District Award, the Distinguished past President Award, and he was the first Canadian Kiwanis President to receive the President’s International Award with Honour. He then received the Governor’s Award of Merit for his year of service as Lt. Governor of Division 12 in 1986/1987. Doug was actively involved with the annual Duck Race and was one of our Club’s representatives at CHEO overseeing distribution of our duck race profits. Now that you know your way around the Club Doug, perhaps the next 30 years will be just as productive. Congratulations on your first 30 years, please come forward to receive your Legion of Honour Certificate.
Mark Max - 30 years
Our last 30-year veteran is Mark Max. In 1972 our Club was very fortunate that Hap Nicholds introduced Mark to this Club. As you heard earlier today, the Max Family has had a long and deep commitment to the Kiwanis Club of Ottawa. Mark’s major contribution to Kiwanis these past 35 years has been through his considerable musical talent. Most of us have come to know Mark at centre stage as Producer, Director and Performer for our musicals. These musicals include welcoming the new Board of Directors in song with lyrics set to well known melodies. He has also serenaded major donors, welcomed visiting Lt. Governors and honoured local businesses who have assisted our Club with fundraisers. Mark, we have been known to give your work a standing ovation on almost every occasion. On March 12, 1993 Past President Dave Costford with the assistance of your father Sol, Harry Brown, sister Ann and members of the Music Committee gave tribute to Mark in recognition of the outstanding contribution he has made to our Club. When I spoke with Mark he mentioned that this day was a highlight of his Kiwanis experience. Mark, please come forward and receive your well deserved Legion of Honour Award for 30 musical and fun filled years in Kiwanis. Looking back to the way we were in 1967, it was of course Canada's centennial year. It was also the year that the Ottawa Civic Centre was opened and Expo 67 opened in Montreal.
Brian McGarry - 35 years
Our first 35-year Kiwanian is Brian McGarry. Brian, would you please stand. Brian has served his community well in many ways, and not just as a Kiwanian. He was elected as a trustee of the OBE in 1985, then re-elected in 1988 and 1991; thereafter he was elected Councillor to the RMOC in 1994. He was a founding partner of the Ottawa Senators Hockey Club and has been a leader of his profession as a Funeral Director, including Past President of the Ontario Funeral Service Association and the Funeral Service Association of Canada. But back to Kiwanis. Brian joined the Kiwanis Club of Carlingwood in 1967 and became that Club’s President in 1971. He subsequently moved to the Kiwanis Club of Ottawa in 1987. Brian was Lt. Gov. of Division 13 in 1973/1974; Administrator of the key Club Program from 1974-1977 and the Circle K Program from 1977-1980. Brian received a number of honours and achievement awards for his involvement with young Circle K'ers. Congratulations on your 35 years as a Kiwanian. Brian, would you please come forward to receive your Legion of Honour Certificate.
David Loeb - 35 years
Our other 35-year member today is David Loeb. David, would you please stand. As the owner of the Ottawa Rough Riders from 1968-1977 David added greatly to the exposure and presence of our service club in the community by co-ordinating the Grey Cup victory celebrations with one of the weekly Kiwanis lunch meetings and by having many Rough Riders and personnel present. David also demonstrated great interest in the Kiwanis Medical Foundation and the Ways and Means and Program Committees. While we don’t see as much of David as we used to, I know that he values his Kiwanis membership and continues to be a very strong supporter of the community. David, thank you for being a loyal and generous Kiwanian these past 35 years. Please come forward to receive your certificate. And now to 40 years. In 1962 the NCC announced the expropriation of Lebreton Flats with plans to quickly develop the site. Montreal's application for Expo 67 was approved and John Diefenbaker was elected Prime Minister.
Frank Cauley - 40 years
Another historical moment was when Frank Cauley was introduced to us by Lloyd Vineburg. Frank, would you please stand. Just like Brian McGarry, if you are old enough to vote you should know Frank Cauley. Frank has been a Councillor in the City of Gloucester and a former trustee for the CBE. Frank joined our Club in 1962 and for the next 8 years served as a Committee Chairman, Treasurer, Director, Vice-President and in 1970/71 he became our Club’s President. Frank told me that the highlight of his Kiwanis experience was when he was President of the Club. Apparently, when Frank gave his weekly President Rose it was known as the "Cauley Flower". Frank, all of us in this room owe you a vote of thanks for the Kiwanis service and even more so your service to Canada during the Second World War. Frank, you are an inspiration to us all; please come forward and receive your well deserved Legion of Honour Certificate and pin.
Hy Soloway - 40 years
Our next 40-year member is Hy Soloway. Mr. Soloway, would you please stand. During his working career, Hy was Senior Council to the law firm Soloway, Wright, Houston and is still one of Ottawa’s best known lawyers. Hy has been very active member in the Jewish Community as well as being involved in many philanthropic endeavours throughout the city. He held the position of Chairman on the Board of Governors at Carleton University and the Community Council of Ottawa. He was the recipient of the Gilbert Greenburg Award, the highest award available for distinguished service in the Jewish Community. Hy, although you don’t visit us often, we are well aware of your good work in the community and we are all proud that you have maintained your association with the Kiwanis Club of Ottawa. Hy, would you please come forward to accept your 40 year Legion of Honour Certificate and pin. In 1957, 45 years ago, the Federal Government adopted the second Monday in October to be Thanksgiving Day. CBC's Front Page Challenge was first broadcast, and construction of our Queensway began.
Sidney Lithwick - 45 years
Also in 1957 Sid Lithwick was introduced to our Club. Sid, would you please stand. Sid is another member who is very faithful to our Club’s activities. Spring, Summer and Fall you will generally find him here at each Friday luncheon always ready to lend some sound advice from his vast experiences with the Club. His glory days go back to the sixties when he was President. In 1967, our centennial year, our Club’s centennial project was a donation of $25,000 to the Grace Hospital Expansion Fund – a lot of money in those days. That year our Club sponsored the Circle K International Convention. Over 1,000 university students from across Canada and the U.S. attended this convention. That same year, a giant inter-club meeting was organized by our Club to host 700 Kiwanians from across Canada. Sid, you obviously had a busy and exciting Presidential year. Apparently, the Grey Cup game was played in Ottawa that year. Incidentally, that was the last time Ottawa won it as well. Please come forward and receive your 45-year Legion of Honour Certificate and pin.
Tom Assaly - 45 years
Tom Assaly also joined our Club 45 years ago when he was introduced by Reed Wilson. Tom, would you please stand. Assaly is another household name in Ottawa known for its generosity. While Tom has been involved with the Ways and Means Committee, Senior Citizen and Membership Committees his real claim to fame has been as the driving force behind Canada’s first Aktion Club. While wintering in Florida Tom attended many Aktion Club meetings and brought this concept back to Canada. Today, more than 40 developmentally challenged adults benefit from their biweekly meetings. Tom has also shown his philanthropy as a member of the board of directors of the Ottawa Food Bank and as a fundraiser for citizens advocacy. Tom, for your 45 years as a member of the Kiwanis, would you please come forward and receive your Legion of Honour Certificate.
Earl Crowe - 45 years
The third member of our class of "57" is Earl Crowe. In 1957 David Morgan, owner of Morgans on the Mall, introduced Earl to our Club. At his first Kiwanis luncheon Sol Max tricked Earl into singing for his lunch. Although Earl served on several committees, he and Sol Max made each other famous for their musical productions performed before live Kiwanis audiences. The most famous without a doubt, the Kiwanis International Convention marking the 50th anniversary of Kiwanis was held in New York City at Madison Square Garden. At this convention Sol Max and his music committee entertained thousands of Kiwanians from around the world. Earl Crowe in his red blazer was the star of the show that night in New York. They say he sang like Pavarotti. Earl, it’s always a treat for us to hear you sing, particularly Danny Boy at our St. Patrick’s Day luncheon. Although Earl has retired as Morgan’s department store Manager, retired from the National Museum of Canada, retired as a board member of the Ottawa Symphony Orchestra, as a producer for Skyline television, as a member of the senior board of trade, and as a director of the Sparks street Merchant Association, retirement has not extended to his love of music and of Kiwanis. Earl, please come forward and receive your Legion of Honour Award for singing for your dinner these past 45 years.
Rev. Art Conrad - 55 Years
And now to the year 1947 when wartime food rationing ended, the Supreme Court of Canada became the final Court of Appeal and negotiations with Newfoundland began to discuss their terms of entry into Confederation. When you are a 55-year member of Kiwanis you can retire from everything except golf. Rev. Art, would you please stand. In 1947 Art Conrad turned 26, became the Pastor of St. Peters Lutheran Church, and joined the Kiwanis Club of Ottawa. He remained faithful to each except his age but that doesn’t count because he tells me he still has an abundance of energy. Art has earned his retirement, having served as the Pastor of St. Peter’s Church for 42 years for which he planned, financed, constructed and retired the debt, long before his retirement in 1989. Art has been the Dean of Chaplains for our Club for 55 years. Art’s life has been devoted to his Ministry and his Community. He was president of the Ottawa Council of Churches for 3 years. He served on the Executive Board of Synod for many years and represented the interests and concerns of the Luthern Church at state functions in Ottawa. Now that Art is retired perhaps this is the most important. He is a member of the Canadian Seniors Golf Assocation which annually holds a 3 day Canadian Senior Golf Championship. Art please tell me that energy and retirement are all you need to play good golf. Congratulations on your good health and 55 years in Kiwanis. Please come forward and receive your Legion of Honour Certificate and pin.
Ladies and Gentlemen, I have just introduced to you 12 Kiwanians who give primacy to the human and spiritual rather than to the material values of life. For almost 500 years of Kiwanis service let us all stand and show our appreciation.