Prime Minister Justin Trudeau issued a statement on Women’s History Month that has prompted me to begin sharing the stories of Chapleau's outstanding women -- and there are many of them I have discovered as I started researching their contributions to the community since its earliest years.
Of course, I already knew some of the more obvious ones, and over the past week Mario Lafreniere and my cousin Anne (Zufelt) McGoldrick, have been of immense assistance.
I invite all readers to share "Because of Her" stories about Chapleau women Please feel free to contact me by email at firstname.lastname@example.org or on Facebook.
First though, the prime minister's comments that put it into perspective: “This October, I am pleased to join Canadians from coast to coast to coast to celebrate Women’s History Month.
“This year’s theme – Because of Her – gives all Canadians the chance to recognize and appreciate the significant achievements and contributions women have made to our great country.
“Despite historical hurdles and barriers, women have taken their place – as politicians and advocates, as entrepreneurs and leaders, as artists and academics – pushing for advances and changes that have benefited us all.
“While we celebrate the progress made, we remain keenly aware of the important work that still needs to be done to achieve true gender equality. By highlighting stories of how women have shaped our lives, we can inspire both current and future generations to continue to fight for a society in which all people feel empowered, and have the same opportunities to reach their full potential.
“On behalf of the Government of Canada, Sophie and I encourage all Canadians to join us in celebrating Women’s History Month. I also urge you to become part of the Government of Canada’s #BecauseofHer campaign, to share and learn more about all of the remarkable women – past and present – who have influenced us, and who have helped build a better, stronger, and much more inclusive Canada."
To launch the series, I decided to share two photos that Anne provided -- one of women who were members of the Catholic Women's League at Sacred Heart Roman Catholic Church and the other of long-time members of Branch Number 5 (Ontario) of the Royal Canadian Legion receiving 25 year pins..
|Mrs Linklater, Mrs. Riley, Mrs Montgomery, Mom. Mrs Freeborn - Legion Ladies|
As I considered the prime minister's comments, I felt that "Because of Her", Mrs. A.W.Moore, a real difference was made in the life of Chapleau as she was primarily responsible for artificial ice in the Chapleau Memorial Community Arena in 1965. Mrs. Moore started raising funds for the artificial ice in 1951, just as the arena opened. For those who do not remember Mrs. Moore, she sold hockey pool tickets on the outcome of National Hockey League games -- going door to door to sell them weekly to her regular customers. All revenue went to the projects she supported.
The Chapleau Sentinel noted that her years of involvement with "courage, spunk and determination" to make it happen, will be ever remembered.
Amelia Moore was born in Manitoba, and after moving to Chapleau in the 1920s, and after World War II, became involved in Chapleau hockey primarily as the main sponsor of the Trappers in the very competitive town league. In 1949, she was delighted when her team won the town championship. They were her pride and joy, and they showed their appreciation of her efforts with a testimonial dinner.
After artificial ice was installed in the memorial arena, it changed the Chapleau hockey scene immensely. Bantam teams coached and managed by David Mizuguchi and David Futhey were very successful in the Northern Ontario Playground Hockey Association, and in 1966-67, the Chapleau Junior 'B' Huskies were founded by Lorne Riley, Keith 'Buddy' Swanson and Thomas Welch --- They won it all in their first year in the International Junior 'B' League, as well as the NOHA title.
The Chapleau Intermediate 'A" Huskies of the Northland Intermediate 'A' Hockey League arrived in the 1970s.
When the Chapleau Recreation Centre opened in 1978, the municipal council had decided that the arena portion would be called the Mrs. A.W. Moore Arena, and "Mrs. Hockey' Moore' was on hand for the official opening.
Take a moment next time when you are in the arena to remember Mrs. Moore, and the contribution she made to Chapleau. Because of Her efforts, Chapleau became a better place to live, work and play. More Because of Her next week. My email is email@example.com