Most Recent: Paul Mackan


(Obituaries are listed alphabetically at the top, but in chronolocical order below)
Jane Crosier - Monday, March 2, 2009
Mildred Joyce MacDonald - Thursday, June 4th, 2009
Paul Mackan - Tuesday, December 2, 2014
Les McLaughlin - Saturday, January 8, 2011
Lori Nash - Thursday, March 1, 2012
Norma Reveler-Butler - Wednesday, July 21, 2010
Frederick Arthur Walker - Tuesday June 22, 2010
Patrick White - Saturday March 1, 2014
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Please note, if anyone (family or friends) would like to add more history or information, to these obituaries, please let us know: patrick[at]writersdeadline.ca

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Paul Alexander Mackan

Paul Mackan-Actor(Ottawa, Saturday, Dec. 6, 2014)
MACKAN, Paul Alexander - December 2, 2014.
Many of you have expressed shock and sadness at the death of our friend, colleague and list member Paul Mackan, who passed away on Tuesday, December 2.

I knew that Paul had been having some real challenges with cancer, but felt in recent months that he was keeping it in check and seemed to be getting stronger. He must have been worse than he let on.

I am only sorry that we had not met for that proverbial "coffee" in the past months and and particularly sad that I did not know of his final stop at the Elisabeth Bruyere Centre.

Goodness knows how difficult visits to that wonderful caring place can be, as it was the last stop for my own dear Monique Lussier a number of years ago.

And now more information that I have gathered...
~ Patrick Meikle

Click here to see information and a picture of the church where the memorial service will be held.

Obituary from the Whelan Funeral Home:
MACKAN, Paul - Peacefully in Ottawa on Dec 2. Paul and his partner, Sara Lee Stadelman, devoted their lives to bringing an appreciation of the arts to Catholic circles, holding workshops, producing pageants and touring their own theatrical productions. Based in Michigan, Palmer’s Rapids, ON, and then Ottawa, their work took them to Mexico, Italy, much of the United States and parts of Canada. Passionate about the arts, Paul used his talents in sacred music, theatre, film and TV. His essays appeared in the Ottawa Citizen and on CBC Radio. In spite of cancer which metastisized, Paul continued acting, writing, teaching writing and coaching. He published several books and volunteered countless hours at Ottawa’s Third Wall Theatre. Predeceased by his parents, Donald and Helen (Sheridan) Mackan, and seven siblings, Paul is survived by his sister, Sheila Land, his brother Tom, many nieces and nephews, notably Don Mackan, and many, many friends. Paul received outstanding care from his medical teams including Dr. Donald Guy, and staff at the Regional Cancer Centre, Billingswood Manor, the Ottawa Hospital, and the Elisabeth Bruyere Centre. Donations may be made in his honor to the
Third Wall Theatre, 2 Daly Ave, Ottawa, K1N 6E2. Paul has donated his body to medical education. There will be a Memorial Mass at St. George’s Church, 415 Piccadilly Ave on Friday, Dec. 12, at 3 p.m. Arrangements entrusted to the Whelan Funeral Home tel. 613-233-1488. Send condolences here.


Obituary published in the Ottawa Citizen on Dec. 6, 2014:
MACKAN, PaulPeacefully in Ottawa on December 2, 2014. Passionate about the arts, Paul used his talents in writing, theatre, sacred music, film and TV. His essays appeared in the Ottawa Citizen and on CBC Radio. Paul and his partner, Sara Lee Stadelman, devoted decades to bringing an appreciation of the arts to Catholic circles, holding workshops, producing pageants and touring their own theatrical productions. Based in Michigan, Palmer's Rapids, ON, and then Ottawa, their work took them to Mexico, Italy, much of the United States and parts of Canada. In spite of advancing cancer, Paul continued acting, writing, teaching, and coaching. He published several books and volunteered countless hours at Ottawa's Third Wall Theatre. Predeceased by his parents, Donald and Helen (Sheridan) Mackan, and seven siblings, Paul is survived by his sister, Sheila Land, brother Tom, many nieces and nephews, notably Don Mackan, and many, many friends. Paul received outstanding care from his medical teams including Dr. Donald Guy, and staff at the Regional Cancer Centre, Billingswood Manor, the Ottawa Hospital, and the Elisabeth Bruyere Centre. Donations may be made to the Paul Mackan Fund for Young Artists c/o
Community Foundation of Ottawa, 301 – 75 Albert St., Ottawa, ON, K1P 5E7. Paul has donated his body to medical education. There will be a Memorial Mass at St. George's Church, 415 Piccadilly Ave on Friday, December 12, 2014 at 3 p.m. followed by coffee. Arrangements entrusted to The Whelan Funeral Home, tel. 613. 233-1488. Click here to see more and click here if you would like to leave a message in the online Guest Book.


Obituary published on Lifenews.ca on Dec. 6, 2014:
MACKAN, Paul Alexander Died in Ottawa, Ontario, December 2, 2014, peacefully among his circle of close and caring friends. Lately of Ottawa and Palmer Rapids, Ontario, Paul lived for many years in Hamilton. An actor and director of considerable talent, Paul was a founding member of the once illustrious St. Thomas More Players of Hamilton. A practising musician, he will be remembered for his work in sacred music as a church organist. He found a latent vocation as a writer and poet, a love of both he shared with his late partner-in-life and spiritual fellow traveller, Sara Stadelman. Together they promoted the essentials of theatre, spirituality, and the written word all over North America from the Living Word Centre in Palmer Rapids, Ontario, until they re-settled in Ottawa in the 1980s. Paul is loved and remembered by scores of friends, colleagues, and admirers in both Hamilton and Ottawa. He is survived by siblings Sheila (Land) and Tom of Hamilton, Ontario, and his many nieces and nephews. Born in Niagara Falls, Ontario, in 1933, Paul is predeceased by his parents Donald A. and Helen (Sheridan), and seven of his nine siblings. At his request, his remains have been donated to medical science.



Paul also posted his bio on our "
Members Page".
(If you do a Google search using: ("Paul Mackan" ottawa) you will find many references to Paul.)
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Here are some comments from some of Paul's friends and colleagues:

Saturday, December 6, 2014:
I was shocked and saddened to see an obituary for Paul Mackan in today's Citizen. He died on December 2nd, at the Elizabeth Bruyere Centre, which is probably why several of us were unable to reach him at Billingsworth Manor.
Many of us have fond memories of Paul joining us for FTN dinners at Perkins over the past few years. Paul told wonderful stories about his theatre experiences, and he and I often shared our
opinions of favorite plays, actors, and local productions. I was amazed at his willingness to continue volunteering for Third Wall Theatre even after he was so sick. We will all miss him.
Barbara (Bobbi) Florio Graham
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Saturday, December 6, 2014:
It was sad news that Paul passed. If anyone wants to send something, you can use the address of the funeral home.
Rick Czapelka
-

Saturday, December 6, 2014:
Paul has been on our minds a lot lately and it has been some time since he responded to emails or phone. We thought about him and discussed ways to possibly reach him, at the FTN on Tuesday. How ironic! We are deeply saddened to learn that he passed that day. He was a gentle soul who was a dear friend... We will try to visit Friday. May he rest in peace. Blessings to all,
Aimee and Ron Britten
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Saturday, December 6, 2014:
We have such mixed emotions: sadness that we hadn't developed a budding friendship still further, yet gladness that Paul is free - and victorious - in his long battle, and united again in love with his Sara Lee, both of them in the embrace of j'shuah ha m'shiah. May their names be found written in the Book of Life. Gary and Sheila Knight.
Gary and Sheila Knight, Gatineau, Quebec
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Sunday, December 7, 2014:
I didn't know Paul as well as some other writers at the FTN - But when I did chat with him, he was always fun and interesting to listen to. Paul will be missed at our table at Perkins in a physical way but our memories of having spent some time with him, will always remain in our hearts. The very last time that I saw Paul at the FTN, he told us a very funny joke and he seemed happy- that's the memory I will carry with me about Paul. I plan to attend Friday's memorial- and I hope others can come also.
Linda Sparks
-

Sunday, December 7, 2014:
Thank you for letting us know. We were so fortunate to enjoy his company for so many times at FTN. I hope those who have stories to tell will at some time do so either in writing or when gathering together in his memory around the table. I may be there on Friday as well. Is there someone I could team up with?
Iris ten Holder
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Monday, December 8, 2014:
I'm so sorry to hear about Paul. I got to know him several years ago, when we both attended Patrick Meikle's FTN sessions. I think he really enjoyed rides home in my Smart car.
R.I.P., Paul. Condolences and prayers from Port Coquitlam, B.C.
Pandora Ballard, Port .Coquitlam, British Columbia
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Monday, December 8, 2014:
So sorry to hear that Paul is no longer with us. My condolences to his family. I knew Paul from Tree Reading Series, and The Ontario Poetry Society. He is fondly remembered and he will be missed.
Carol Stephen, Carleton Place, Ontario
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Monday, December 8, 2014:
Some times when I gave him ride in my car, I found his conversations very educational & inspiring. It is a very sad loss for all of us.
Nishat Alvi Siddiqui
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Tuesday, December 9, 2014:
So sorry to hear this, Patrick. I remember Paul from the Tuesday afternoon sessions.
Jon Peirce
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Wednesday, December 10, 2014:
How very sad to hear of Paul's passing! Thank you, Patrick! I no longer receive the Citizen and I hadn't heard. Sincere condolences to the family and his close friends. Paul was an endearing man.
Alberte Villeneuve-Sinclair, Vars, Ontario
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Wednesday, December 10, 2014:
I'm finally getting around to reading my (would you believe over 2,000?) e-mails that arrived while I was in hospital or convalescing. I was so saddened to read about Paul. He was an interesting man and will certainly be missed - especially at FTN.
June Coxon


We shared a good laugh with Paul and Rosaleen,
even if the spontaneity was lost in the retakes.


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Patrick White

rob mclennan writes: "The third and (so far) final Poet Laureate of Ottawa (1987-1990), Patrick White, has died after an extended battle with cancer." Click here to read rob's blog.

Further to rob's blog, you may want to check out these resources as well:

A celebration of Patrick's life is in the very early planning stages. This information will be passed on as soon as there is more info to give.
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Lori Nash

OBITUARY: NASH, Lori - Peacefully on March 1, 2012 in her 62nd year after a courageous battle with cancer. Predeceased by her parents George and Mary Siteman (nee Whalen) and sister Theresa Booth. Lori was a loving and devoted wife to husband Lorne, loving mother to her daughter Marcia Pascal (Dan) and son Christopher (Melanie Campeau), and cherished grandmother to Kylie, Cassidy and Holly. Lori will be lovingly remembered by her sister Geneva Murphy (Lloyd) of Fredericton, brothers Cyril Siteman (Janet) of Falmouth, Nova Scotia and James (Jim) Siteman (Mary) of Toronto, brother-in-law Dennis Nash, and sister-in-law Ardith Nash of Winnipeg. She will fondly be remembered by her nieces and nephews. Friends may call at the Heritage Funeral Home 2871 St. Joseph Blvd. Orleans, on Monday, March 5th from 2-4 and 7-9 p.m. A Memorial Service will be held on Tuesday, March 6th at 11:00 a.m. at the Redeemer Alliance Church 4825 Innes Road, Orleans, Ont. Memoriam donations may be made to the Redeemer Alliance Church and the Ottawa Public Library. Website. You can also sign the Guest Book.

Patrick remembers Lori Nash:
Lori had been a member of our writers' list for more years than I can remember... not that she had the time to read everything... I don't hink she posted more than two or three messages... but she continued to remain a member... just part of her keen interest in things writing-related.

I first came across her name years ago when I was freelancing. She published a slick, glossy magazine called Orleans something, similar to Ottawa Magazine. It did not last too long, it was an ambitious venture, but expensive.

The next time we encountered her, I was an OIW board member and we tried to set up an OIW -East chapter in Orleans, to try and increase the membership and make it a little easier for the far-eastern residents to belong. I remember John Cook and I attending their first meeting at the Orleans Library. As the meeting progressed, I got up to say something, as a board member from the "HQ Chapter". Lori stopped me short... she was in charge, and no one was going to interrupt her meeting... even if we were the people from Ottawa, who were supposed to be running the organization.

I lost track of her over the years... given my own spouse's losing battle with cancer, and my involvement and integration with my community news website in Rockland... but I remember her well.



Here are some interesting links that I would like to share:
  • The 'Queen' of Queenswood Heights gets library room named in her honour - Queenswood Heights resident and long-time friend of the Cumberland Library, Lori Nash, was the guest of honour at a special dedication ceremony to rename the library's meeting room in her honour on Wednesday March 23, 2011. (Story and photo)
  • Long Time Library Advocate Lori Nash Honoured - The Ottawa Public Library (OPL) has honoured Lori Nash, long-time library advocate, secretary of the OPL Foundation Board and former President of the Friends of the Ottawa Public Library (FOPLA) by naming a meeting room at its Cumberland branch during a reception Wednesday March 23, 2011. (Story and photo)
  • Lori Nash: Long-time Orléans resident passes away - Various organizations are reaching out to honour Lori Nash, long-time Orléans resident and community leader. (Story and photo)
  • Queen of Queenswood Heights passes away - There will be fond memories of a strong public character to remember every time Orleans residents walk past the Lori Nash meeting room at the Cumberland Library. (Story and photo)
  • Queen' of Queenswood Heights succumbs to cancer at age 62 - Fred Sherwin's Orleans Online - One of the east end's most impassioned residents and arguably the best friend the Cumberland Library ever had, passed away on Thursday after a year-long battle with cancer. (This is the best of stories so far!) (Story and photo)
  • Fred's tribute to Lori: Paying tribute to an amazing woman - A dear friend of mine passed away the other day. I say "dear", not in the traditional sense as someone might refer to a close friend, but as a term of endearment for an old friend who I no longer stayed in touch with as I once did... I'm speaking of course about Lori Nash, who passed away this week after a year-long battle with cancer. (Read More)

The Ottawa Public Library Foundation announces with great sadness the passing of Lori Nash, a member of our Board of Directors.

Lori was a passionate supporter of the Ottawa Public Library and a tireless member of the Foundation Board. She contributed much energy, many ideas, advocacy and focussed strategic direction during her tenure on the Board, in support of her great passion – the Library and the services it provides to our citizens.

Prior to her work with the Foundation she was the President of the Friends of the Ottawa Public Library and provided tremendous leadership to that group. Lori was a city champion, a library and literacy advocate, a dear colleague and we will miss her greatly.

This content is also available in: French


Does anyone else have a Lori Nash story? Send it to me if you do.
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Les McLaughlin

Preliminary Information from Ray Stone:
Sadly I am sending this e-mail to let you know that our dear friend Les McLaughlin passed away at 8pm Ottawa time today. His gentle influence, gifted talents and Yukon sense of humour will be missed by all of us. Final arrangements are being made with Tubman Funeral Homes. Les' son Mark is available at 613-828-3102. - Ray Stone
(
Read Ray's eulogy to Les)
(
Read Dave Brown's tribute in the Ottawa Citizen)

This photo comes from a Web site called Yukon Nuggets and offers some background on Les:
Born in Valleyview, Alberta, Les McLaughlin was just three years old when he arrived in Whitehorse. His youth included playing midget, juvenile for the Hougens team, and senior hockey, along with volunteering at the military-run radio station CFWH in the late Fifties. It was just the beginning of a long broadcasting career. To read more of this bio,
click here.

Obituary:
McLAUGHLIN, Leslie Lorne (Longtime Employee and Producer with CBC) Peacefully at home on Saturday, January 8, 2011, after a lengthy battle with cancer. Son of the late Janet (nee Kerr) and Lorne McLaughlin, he is survived by his loving children Mark McLaughlin (Susan Decker), Ottawa and Angela McLaughlin (Braydon Short) Aldergrove, BC, and their mother Ann. He was a dear brother to Irene Pratt, Dundas, ON, Tom McLaughlin (Betty), Westbank, BC, Margaret Heath, Grande Prairie, AB, Jean Havens (Ted), Burnaby, BC, and the late Fred McLaughlin, Whitehorse, Yukon. He was a devoted grandfather of Anna and Benjamin. He is also survived by numerous cousins, nieces, nephews and extended family members, and will also be greatly missed by his many colleagues and a wide circle of friends from near and far.

Les began his broadcasting career with CBC Northern Service in Whitehorse, Yukon as summer relief in 1962 and was a full-time announcer operator from 1964 – 68. He was the Northern Service producer in Montreal from 1968 – 80, moving to Ottawa as the producer/head of the Ottawa production unit form 1980 – 1995. The Northern Service production unit was established in 1980 as the result of minor downsizing at the CBC Northern Service short-wave headquarters in Montreal, the unit was located at the Chateau Laurier Hotel on the 8th floor, in an unused storage area which came to be known as The Eagle’s Nest. During his career, Les was the recipient of many awards that recognized not only his work in broadcasting, but most importantly his contribution in promoting artists, such as Hank Karr, and the Northern Peoples culture and talent; including Susan Aglukark, Hank Karr, Charlie Panigoniak, and Kashtin, to name a few.

Service Celebrating Les' life will be held at the Garden Chapel of Tubman Funeral Homes, 3440 Richmond Road, Nepean (between Bayshore Dr. and Baseline Rd.) on Saturday, January 15th at 2:00 pm, followed by a reception. In lieu of flowers a donation to the Les McLaughlin Fund, c/o the Yukon Foundation, for the pursuit of journalism, production and broadcasting would be appreciated. To read more about Les' life, or to send condolences, tributes or donations please visit www.tubmanfuneralhomes.com. View/Sign the Guest Book.


Internet References:
  • NWT Archives presents Les McLaughlin and the CBC - (CBC Northern Service recordings produced by or in association with Les McLaughlin. His work at the Chateau Laurier studios in Ottawa was prolific. This reference offers a link to a recording.) Click here. This site also carries some bio on Les. Click here.
  • From Sturgeon Sound... Canadian history in the great northwest. The spoken word items are narrated by Les McLaughlin, an award winning former CBC broadcaster who grew up in the land of the midnight sun. (Les McLaughlin sings 12 timeless ballads that will make your heart grow fonder as you listen and recall the days of yore when lyrics told a story and lovers filled the dance floors.) Click here.
  • Blogs about Les Mclaughlin - From Rose Simpson an Ottawa-based writer who blogs on the $10 life. Click here.
  • The Alaska Highway - A Yukon Perspective - (Excerpt from CBC announcer Les McLaughlin’s program on the history of the Alaska Highway including clips from former U.S. soldiers describing how they dealt with the extreme cold and other difficulties.)( Just one of several sound recordings tha you can listen to.) Click here.
  • A CKRW Yukon Nugget - Dr. Maurice Haycock - Some of Les' work talking about Dr. Maurice Haycock, mineralogist , Arctic painter and traveller.

(NOTE: These are just a few of the many references that you can find about Les on the Internet. A google search will reveal many more.)
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Les McLaughlin ~ tribute ~ Eulogy by Ray Stone

I never really knew anyone who fit the title of renaissance man until I met Les McLaughlin. And even then it took nearly forty years to recognize that he was the quintessential renaissance man. But there it is. Our pal Les is right up there with the best of them ~~ even though his favorite pair of slippers was a creative combination of caribou skin and duct tape. He accomplished so much in his own quiet way, that many of us never realized the scope of his talent. When he decided to try painting northern scenery, it became an all consuming passion ~~ and his small dining room became a studio where he produced dozens of unique, brilliant, wonderful sunsets and icescapes, colorful birds, and even classic cars. His home became an art gallery and just a couple of months ago he presented Karen and I with one of my favorite paintings as a wedding present. It hangs in our home in California.

Les wasn’t a musician ~~ he didn’t play any instrument ~~but he contributed an incredible legacy to the music scene here in Canada. He showcased the talents of many northern musical artists during the annual CBC True North Concert series. Well known entertainers ~ Susan Aglukark ~ Charlie Panagoniak ~ and Kashtin have acknowledged the important role Les played in their careers. Les was an amazingly talented music producer, bringing together musicians from just about everywhere to create an impressive library of LPs and albums for the Northern Service, and later for his own record company. His exceptionally popular Robert Service CD will be played for years to come. His CDs and DVD video productions of the songs of Hank Kerr are masterpieces, and his own recordings ~~ Crooner in 2006 and Sincerely in 2008 are further examples of his extraordinary versatility and talent.

He sang surprisingly well on these CDs, with the patient help of Canada’s musical icon Tracy Brown singing the harmony.

Here’s what he wrote for the back of his Crooner CD:

When I was a lad growing up in the Yukon, my lifeline to the “great big broad land way down yonder” was through the crackling static of a tiny transistor radio. I’d spend endless hours , especially at night when reception was bright, listening to Elvis, Paul, Perry, Connie and Johnny and other distant super-stars, who through the magic of radio, were as close to me as ice fog in the motionless cold of a crisp winter’s night. Now, with the classy assistance of some fabulous musician friends, I offer my interpretation of some songs that shaped my younger years. As you listen you can imagine a lonely teen-ager with a transistor radio welcoming Elvis and other pop stars to the land of the midnight sun.

Let’s listen to a couple of verses of Les singing Sentimental Journey.
(Played Sentimental Journey ~ one minute only)

We can safely say that Les wasn’t a fashion plate, ~~and when he asked me to take a few photographs of him for the cover of his album, he wanted to look a bit more spiffy than usual. I asked him to wear a nice white shirt, and good sports jacket and a classy tie. He had none of the above. The picture of him standing under the bright red leaves of a maple tree looks very snazzy. He’s wearing my shirt, my jacket and my tie.

His quiet determination helped him conquer three demons ~~ He quit drinking , quit smoking and quit going to the casino ~~ all within a year. That’s enough to drive an ordinary man coo-coo. Les quietly fought those battles ~~ and won.

Les became one of the most popular figures ever to belong to the National Press Club of Canada. He made every Friday night at the club an event ~~ name that tune ~~ pool tournaments ~~ Video nights ~~ roasts and farewell parties ~~ Les was there along with his buddy Mike Pasternak helping to make the club what it used to be ~ an exciting and fun place. And his legendary hilarious conversations with Gordie Lovelace were awesome to behold. With their deadpan improv they once convinced a naïve new club member that the federal government secretly moved Newfoundland back and forth between time-zones twice a year as a massive public works project, but someone raised a ruckus and they had to stop in mid-transfer ~~ hence the half-hour time zone difference.

If you ever feel that you deserve the Order of Canada, don’t ask me to apply on your behalf. I’ve tried to have three deserving Canadians awarded this honor ~~ Jan Zurakowski, one of Canada’s most famous and heroic Air Force pilots, Rosaleen Dickson, a leading author, journalist, activist and wonderful Canadian ~~ and Les McLaughlin ~~~ all three were turned down by the wizards at Government House in favor of more deserving candidates. I won’t mention any names.

Les was an award-winning videographer. After retiring from the CBC as a radio producer of great renown, he decided that it must be just as easy to edit video as it was to edit audio tapes. He proved that he was right. It was easy ~~ for him. Watching him edit a complex video with all of the many tracks and cues and fades and effects was like watching the conductor of a symphony orchestra ~~ all in the exotic surroundings of his home studio which was a combination of a Rube Goldberg contraption, and Fibber Magee’s closet. His equipment was laced together with bits of tape decks from the 1950s, space age video cameras and computers, home-made wiring connections and cardboard boxes. But it all worked, and the finished product, whether it was a you-tube production of my song Mysterious woman, to a documentary about the Yukon River, was always a masterpiece.

Les was a writer in the Hemmingway sense of the word. His Yukon Nuggets appeared regularly in the Whitehorse Star and were always a joy to read. They were a kaleidoscope of historic and hilarious tales of the wild west.

As the executive producer for the CBC Northern Service, Les created literally thousands of news stories, features, dramas, historic series, and endless interviews with the newsmakers of the day~~ all with the help of a stable of unstable reporters and free-lancers. Several of us here today were members of that unstable group. I started with Les in 1968 and for thirty-five years had the time of my life working with Les on several iconic radio series for the CBC Northern service. His award-winning drama on the Mad Trapper of Rat River was replayed by the CBC a couple of months ago, thanks to the dedication of Julie Maloney. It was originally produced in 1975. I had one line in that epic ~~ “We know you’re in there” and then a gunshot and I went “UGH” ~~ killed by the Mad trapper.

But his true love was always Canada’s northwest. His annual pilgrimage to his beloved family retreat at Sturgeon Lake gave him a chance to kick back and recharge. It was on one of these getaways that he began fiddling with video production, and a new career was born. He’ll be there again this summer ~~ I won’t have to drive him to the airport this time ~~ his angel wings will take him there.

All of us here were his best friends. He was everybody’s best pal. His loving family ~~ His son Mark and wife Susan, two little grandkids ~ Daughter Angela, sisters Irene, Margaret and Jean, brothers tom and the late Fred McLaughln (names – daughter, sisters, brothers etc ~~ and all of his best pals will always remember his infectuous smile, his political steadfastness ~ his quiet understated talent and his beautiful personality. Les, we’re gonna miss you ~~ but your memory lives on in your many creative accomplishments. As your pal Robert Service would say, Les cast the spell of the Yukon over all of us. As my daughter Cathee said ~~ The aurora borealis will shine a little brighter.

Save a place for us in Valhalla Les.


Saying goodbye to a CBC legend
By Dave Brown, Ottawa Citizen, January 24, 2011

A spirit appeared during a celebration-of-life service in a funeral home chapel Jan. 15, with the express purpose of helping a grieving young woman singer whose voice had faltered.

The upbeat ceremony was to say goodbye to Leslie Lorne (Les) McLaughlin, a broadcast lifer with the CBC's Arctic radio service. He died of cancer Jan. 8. He didn't think age worth mentioning, but like most of his friends, he was 69.

The singer at Tubman's Garden Chapel on Richmond Road was Kelly Prescott, and she was well into Loch Lomond when she choked up.

That was when, with no hesitation, the spirit of the old National Press Club appeared. Many of the more than 100 attendees were, like Les McLaughlin, survivors of the club's glory days, multitalented, and not shy about turning loose the vocal cords or chords.

Suddenly the spirit in the room was upbeat and happy. It was the press club. It was spontaneous, and Les would have loved it.

McLaughlin was one of the most interesting members of a club filled with interesting people, and one of the hardest to get to know. For most of three decades, you'd find him occupying the same spot at the north end of the club's big bar.

If a stranger was looking for a media star, they'd give him a pass.

He looked so ordinary one could be forgiven for thinking a man had wandered into the wrong bar.

He was modest and self-effacing, rare qualities in a media star, particularly of the CBC variety. He seemed to have been born with premature male pattern baldness. He wore oversized glasses. There were unproved rumours he owned a tie. His usual greeting was to dip his head, peer over his glasses, and smile.

He wouldn't be alone long. People, most of them high-profile media types, gravitated to Les. The press club was a swamp crawling with opinions. Les was a proving ground. A writer may have been ready to put an opinion into word or print and if lucky enough to find Les at the north end, could flight test the latest punditry. If there were design flaws in the thinking, they would show immediately. Les looked like a shy man, but he wasn't. He was also one of the most opinionated players in the place.

During his career he helped launch northern music stars like Hank Karr, Susan Aglukark, Charlie Panigoniak, and Kashtin.

He took early retirement from his producer's job in Ottawa, saying there were other things he wanted to do. Then he surprised us all. He could sing. He could write songs. He was raised in the Yukon and could have been the territory's unofficial historian. He knew the works of Robert Service by heart and put many of them to music, then went on tour with Tracey Brown (of the Family Brown singers), and the mother of Kelly Prescott. They produced records of the music of the North. Photos for CDs and promotional material were done by longtime McLaughlin friend and club member Ray Stone, who during a eulogy said: "He accomplished so much in his own quiet way that most of us didn't realize the scope of his talent." He also explained how Les turned out looking so dapper on one of his CDs. "He's wearing my jacket, shirt and tie."

McLaughlin was also a painter. His battered paint box was on display at the service. It contained his ashes. Stone reminded attendees that McLaughlin's favourite footwear was a pair of slippers made of caribou skin and duct tape. The urn replacement was the right style.

The service was conducted by Rev. Nancy Murphy, for many years the press club's chaplain. The event needed a special touch, and she nailed it. She talked about ministering to the north end bar, said they really needed it, and admitted she had a swell time. Although Les was not religious, she referred to how he prospered under God's grace; "whether he believed it or not."

Changing times and a shrinking membership closed the press club's Wellington Street quarters three years ago, and it now exists as a foundation struggling to keep alive a variety of awards commitments.

In case it appears Les spent too much time at a bar, it should be mentioned that, like some of us, he quit drinking years ago.

He was the youngest of a large family, and although divorced about 30 years ago, stayed close to his two children and two grandchildren.

brady.brown@bell.net
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Norma Reveler-Butler

REVELER-BUTLER, Norma It is with great sadness that we announce the death of Norma Reveler. Norma passed away on Wednesday, July 21st at the age of 46 after a courageous battle with cancer. She was the beloved wife of William Butler, the cherished daughter of Dwight and Margaret (nee MacNeill, formerly of North Rustico) Reveler and dear daughter in-law to Edith Butler and friend to Leah Butler. Norma was a loving sister to Doug (Jennifer), Ian, and Elaine (George), and a loving aunt to Ben, Kimberly, Alanah, Ryan, Brianne and Brett. She will be greatly missed by her family and multitude of friends including Donna, Emily and Lorna. Norma graduated from Carleton University with a degree in journalism and received her Bachelor of Education at the University of PEI. Her joy was travelling. She spent seven years living in Japan, and she travelled for pleasure, to write freelance articles and with her work. Her last job was with the Canadian Paralympic Committee. Friends are invited to visit at the Central Chapel of Hulse, Playfair & McGarry, 315 McLeod Street (at O'Connor) on Sunday, July 25 from 2-4 & 7-9pm. A Funeral Service will be held in the Chapel on Monday, July 26 at 1pm. As expressions of sympathy, donations may be made to the Ottawa Hospital Foundation for cancer research. Sign and view the Guest Book.


Internet References:
  • The Hollywood Reporter: Former THR reporter Norma Reveler dies (International correspondent worked in Tokyo, Canada) Click here.
  • (Read articles that Norma wrote for THR) Click here.
  • The Wire Report: Norma Reveler to be remembered. Click here.
  • Photos of Norma Reveler and Will Butler: Photo one. Photo two.

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Frederick Arthur Walker

WALKER, Frederick Arthur - June 22, 2010. It is with regret that we inform you of the recent passing of Fred Walker. Fred died peacefully at the Elisabeth Bruyère Health Centre on Tuesday June 22, 2010 at the age of 49 years. He was a long-time member of Canadian Authors Association and a very active participant in the Ottawa Branch. He will be much missed by his friends at CAA. As an expression of sympathy memorial contributions to your favorite charity would be appreciated by the family. www.mcgarryfamily.ca.

Obituary: Peacefully at the Elisabeth Bruyère Health Centre on Tuesday June 22, 2010 at the age of 49 years. Beloved son of William Edgar (Ed) Walker and the late Irene Walker (nee Sawyer). Dear brother of Marilyn Laplante (Martin). Fondly remembered by his nieces, Michelle and Nicole and nephew Alexandre. Friends are invited to visit at the St-Laurent Chapel of Hulse, Playfair & McGarry, 1200 Ogilvie Road (at Aviation Parkway) on Sunday June 27th, 2010 from 2-4 and 7-9 p.m. The Funeral Mass will be held at Annunciation of the Lord Roman Catholic Church, 2414 Ogilvie Road Ottawa on Monday June 28th, 2010 at 11 a.m. As an expression of sympathy memorial contributions to your favorite charity would be appreciated by the family.
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Mildred Joyce MacDonald

Mildred, early in her careerMacDONALD, Mildred Joyce (nee Holmes) November 18, 1927 - June 4, 2009 With a martini in one hand and a microphone in the other, veteran broadcaster Mildred MacDonald entertained us with her innate ability to find the story in everyday people and events. She is survived by: her daughter Alex and her partner Martin Clary; granddog Zo; and her sisters, Merrie Bulin (Swift Current) and Marg Galvin (Dryden). Special thanks to the wonderful staff at the Ottawa Cancer Centre, the Hospice at May Court and, especially to Dr. Beverly Armitage. In lieu of flowers, please send donations to the Hospice at May Court (613-260-2906 ext. 222 or www.hospicemaycourt.com ). A celebration of Mil's life will be held at St. Bartholomew's Anglican Church (125 MacKay Street, Ottawa) on Thursday June 11th at 4:30 p.m. Reception to follow.
( NOTE: If you are interested in hearing the recording made at the service, contact:
patrick[at]writersdeadline.ca )

Broadcasting pioneer Mildred MacDonald dies
Mildred MacDonald, an Ottawa role model for women in the field of broadcasting, has died. She worked for 50 years as a broadcaster in both radio and television and spent most of her career with CBC. She died on Thursday evening at an Ottawa hospice after a battle with cancer. She was 81.

MacDonald was born in Moose Jaw, Sask., and worked in private radio there before she moved to Ottawa in the early 1950s. At that time, the public broadcaster didn't hire women as on-air staff, but MacDonald soon found her way on air as a freelancer.

She covered the Queen Mother's 1954 visit to Canada, alongside then broadcaster René Lévesque, and the Saskatchewan doctor's strike in 1960 over a provincial bill that led to the creation of medicare.

MacDonald was a longtime contributor to CBC Ottawa's In Town and Out radio program, which airs on Saturday mornings.

Rob Clipperton, a former host of the show, said that MacDonald had a special touch when conducting interviews. "People often didn't even feel like they were being interviewed by Mil," he said.

"She had such a warm and charming presence about her. Mil had a real knack for making people totally relaxed while talking about themselves."

MacDonald also worked as a story editor with CBC Television's Marketplace and contributed to CBC Radio's Trans-Canada Matinee and Basic Black. She interviewed such celebrities as Sidney Portier and Duke Ellington.


Internet References:
  • - See follow-up comments to the above story, as well as links to some of Mildred's broadcasts: Click here.
  • - "Threats to a replacement doctor" - Broadcast Date: July 11, 1962 - CBC reporter Mildred MacDonald interviews a doctor who received threats for volunteering during the medical crisis in Saskatchewan. Click here.
  • - 'Buy Canadian': a 'simple, sad little plea'? - Broadcast Date: Nov. 23, 1961 - The slogan is simple: "Buy Canadian." But maybe it's too simple. In this CBC Radio discussion from 1961, a consumer advocate and a manufacturing representative go toe to toe over Canada's controversial rallying cry. Buying Canadian guarantees good jobs, good products and a good standard of living, says Stuart Richardson. H.E. Beaudeaulais agrees that might be true, but resists the simplistic motto and nationalist focus. It's "a plea made to us, and not a reason given to us as to why to favour Canadian products." Click here.
  • - Voice for a generation - Obituary: Mildred MacDonald A longtime CBC broadcaster also served as a trailblazer in her field, writes Bruce Ward in the Ottawa Citizen, June 6, 2009. Click here.
  • - Remembering broadcaster Mildred MacDonald (June 05, 2009) Mildred MacDonald spent 50 years of her life telling stories on radio and television. Mostly on the CBC. MacDonald died of cancer in Ottawa last night. She was 81. She started her radio career in Moosejaw. But in the early 1950s, she moved to Ottawa. CFRA hired her as an on-air host. At the time, very few women were on-air broadcasters. Soon after, MacDonald started freelancing for CBC. She worked on dozens of shows. Marketplace, Basic Black, and at the end of her career, she had a column on CBC's In Town and Out. That's back when the radio station was in the Chateau Laurier. Rob Clipperton is the former host of In Town and Out. Mildred was his colleague and dear friend. (Runs 10:46) Click here.
  • - FYshowbill - (In an artricle Gord Atkinson mentions Mildred) "On a personal note, I will long remember the thrill of hosting musical presentations and introducing old showbiz friends on stage at the NAC. The camaraderie of my media friends at Arts Centre functions was always pleasurable and special. Time has reduced our ranks, but not our memories. A most pleasant and respected member of our NAC fraternity was my friend of over 50 years, Mildred MacDonald, who left us recently after enduring a long illness. We were co-workers back in the early 1950s at CFRA. At the CBC, where she was a popular broadcaster for over five decades, she always had a smile in her voice for all her friends and countless radio listeners. It was my great pleasure to be her colleague for over 20 years on the pages of Forever Young." (This article originally appeared in the July 09 issue of Forever Young Newspaper.) Source.
  • - Larry and Mildred MacDonald fonds (From Archives Canada - Historical and Biographical information held on file including: "Fonds consists of a radio drama written in 1953 by Larry and Mildred MacDonald about an immigrant who works as a domestic while training to be the leading ballerina of the Royal Winnipeg Ballet. Also included in fonds are photographs of Larry MacDonald interviewing Prime Minister Louis St. Laurent on his return from a conference in Bermuda with British Prime Minister Harold Macmillan, 27 March 1957; and Larry MacDonald interviewing Solon Low, leader of the National Social Credit Party, at the Ottawa airport, Ottawa, Ont., ca. 1957, with CBC Television news crew in the foreground." Source.
  • - Holiday theatre for the grandkids, by Mildred MacDonald (A review from Ottawa Forever Young, December 2005) "Well, it's that time of year again when we're wondering how to keep the youngsters (either our own or family visitors) entertained over the Christmas holidays. One intriguing performance that I've come across is the Rag and Bone Puppet Theatre's production of The Tempest." More...
  • - Behind the Scenes and the Changing Roles of Women at the CBC - (October 2002 - Kanata Klips - the Kanata branch of the Canadian Federation of University Women - CFUW) Mildred MacDonald will share stories of her career as a broadcaster-journalist at the Regina Leader-Post, CHAB
  • Moose Jaw and CBC Radio and TV over the past fifty years. Come and enjoy this dynamic raconteur. For more years than she says she cares to tally up, broadcaster and writer, Mildred MacDonald, has covered everything from a murder trial to a Royal tour and everything in between. Her beats have included arts and entertainment, consumer, environment and current affairs.
  • She’s probably best known for her Saturday morning interviews on CBC’s weekly radio program In Town and Out but she’s also been a regular on network programs like Metronome, Trans Canada Matinee and Fresh Air. On CBC television, she’s been Ottawa story editor for Marketplace, host of Diplomatic Passport and other local programs as well as consumer reporter for CBOT’s evening newscast. For several seasons, she produced a story featuring active seniors for CJOH’s Eye on Ottawa.
  • As a stepping-stone to the CBC, she had her own daily program on CFRA and before that on CHAB, Moose Jaw in her home province of Saskatchewan. However, the journalism career actually started with print when she was a women’s page reporter, then editor on the Swift Current Sun and later as a general reporter on the Regina Leader Post. These days, she’s also writing again with a monthly arts column for Today’s Seniors and features for Capital Parent. Source.

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Jane Crosier

Jane loved books and felinesCROSIER, Jane Ann (Rioux) Died March 2, 2009 age 61 after a heartbreaking battle with cancer. Beloved wife to Peter, loving mother of Matthew (Valerie) and Benjamin. Devoted grandmother to Catherine, Alexander and Tessa. Daughter to Ray and Dora Rioux. Sister to Raymond, Francis, Carol and Nancy. Lovingly remembered by the Crosier and Rioux families. Born and raised in Port Hope, a graduate of York University Winters College. She worked for the OCDSB for more than 30 years at Glen Ogilvie, Gloucester High, Colonel By and Sir Wilfrid Laurier. Host of the Literary Landscape on CKCU for 12 years. An inveterate gift giver and unrepentant doer of good deeds. Jane loved gardening, her felines, skating on the canal and preparing wonderful family events "getting out and doing something". The service will take place at 1:30 p.m., Saturday, March 7. For details call (613) 552-1832 or email familycrosier@gmail.com Sorry Mom we will be showing pictures. In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the Canadian Cancer Society. Published in the Ottawa Citizen on 3/5/2009.

Other references:
2009 Westfest Lit dedicated to Jane Crosier
(From Nichole McGill's Blogspot) "This year's Westfest Lit was dedicated to the memory of Jane Crosier, literary crusader who hosted the Literary Landscapes program on CKCU for 12 years. A friend to many Ottawa writers, she was an exceptional interviewer; one who gave your book considerable attention, so much so that she could be exhausted after an hour-long interview, and true to her considerate nature, mailed you a thank you card afterwards."

R.I.P. Jane Crosier
(Dedication from Nigel Beale - Nota Bene Books - Contains background and citation.) "Ottawa literary broadcasting icon, and award-winning high school librarian. Jane Crosier was host of the excellent Literary Landscape radio show on CKCU 93.1 FM for 12 years. She worked tirelessly to promote local authors, and to foster a love of literature in her listeners and students. I never met Jane, however, I experienced her generosity. She was among the very first people to provide support and encouragement to me when I first launched my radio program The Biblio File."
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