Letters: week of Nov. 21

Remembrance edition triggered memories

Sir: Thank you so very, very much to all concerned for their effort in publishing “Sarnia Remembers: A special tribute to our local heroes.”

I am an army brat. Our father was posted to Germany twice in the late 1950s to cook for the officers.

While my memory these days isn’t great, I remember taking many trips.

I saw the Berlin Wall before it was town down. I remember the many white crosses at Dieppe.

I remember meeting the family who kept my father safe during the Second World War. They told me it was chicken we were eating, because rabbit wouldn’t have passed my eight-year-old judgment, I’m sure.

It was an education not to be found in any textbook.

My sister has a plaque in her living room with our father’s medals and ribbons displayed. There is also an article in the Wallaceburg News, about our father meeting his brother somewhere in the trenches while they were fighting.

We went to Queen Elizabeth II School this year to see their Remembrance Day ceremony. Thank you to all the staff and students for their effort.

And thank you once again for your fantastic publication.

 

Mary Ettinger
Sarnia

 


 

Hockey is a unifying force in Canada


Sir:
It was with tremendous disbelief that I witnessed the derogatory comments made by host Jessica Allen on CTV’s program The Social on Nov. 12.

During the program she said she doesn’t “worship at the altar of hockey” and found that those who did “all tended to be white boys who weren’t, let’s say, very nice.” She went on to say, “they were generally not thoughtful, they were bullies.”

What? Did I hear that right?

What about the 600,000 plus registered hockey players in Canada (boys and girls)? Not to mention the millions of Canadian hockey fans, hockey moms and dads, volunteers & sponsors from coast to coast to coast, that love the sport we like to call our own.

What do Lisa’s comments say about all the kids (boys and girls), regardless of ethnicity, with a passion for the game? A sport that so many of us grew up playing on backyard rinks, frozen ponds and neighborhood rinks.

We learned teamwork, discipline, sportsmanship, social skills and the benefits of having a competitive spirit, all terrific ingredients for building character.

What about the millions of proud Canadians that gather around TVs with friends, neighbors and family members, to watch the Canadian women’s or men’s hockey teams compete at the Olympics or World Juniors?

Some of our proudest memories have been made watching Canada win on the international stage. These experiences united us from coast to coast to coast. Gold medal winning performances by the women and men’s teams have had so many of us jumping out of our seats with excitement and immense pride.

Nothing brings this country together quicker than witnessing Canada win on the international stage. When Canada wins, Canadians from various backgrounds that have never met before can be found high-fiving each other.

For so many of us, hockey is a proud Canadian experience that unites us.

 

Mark Neil
CEO, Yorkbridge Group Inc.
Toronto

 


 

Lighthouse brought us sunny, sunny day

Sir: Those who were not in attendance at the Imperial Theatre on Nov. 2 missed a phenomenal music concert by the Canadian group Lighthouse.

It was a sold-out show and a testament to the longevity of this band, who are on tour celebrating their 50th anniversary. If you think about a fusion of rock, jazz, classical and swing, this describes Lighthouse. Also, their horn-line is very reminiscent of drum and bugle corps of the good old days.

Like most bands, the lineup has changed over the years, but the current members include four originals now in their 60s and 70s. Their camaraderie and chemistry reflects their 50 years together.

In my party of three, my brother happened to be seated next to the wife of lead singer Dan Clancy. She provided some interesting facts, including that Dan joined the band in 1992.

Co-founder Skip Prokop, who sang lead, played guitar and drums passed away in 2017 at age 73. Skip’s son Jamie is now on percussion and adds a youthful element to the band.

For Sarnians with a history of drums corps, Skip Prokop, at age 17, was a member of Toronto Optimists and won the Canadian National Rudimentary Drumming Championship.

Each of the musicians is a seasoned veteran, and all have been involved in producing, writing and teaching. Several have written music for TV shows, commercials and documentaries, and performed with symphony orchestras. With their immense talents they’ve worked with other bands such as Blood, Sweat and Tears, Motherlode and Dr. Music.

Brian Austin and Imperial Theatre staff ‘pulled out all the stops’ to book Lighthouse and I hope he can get them to return, perhaps next year.

It’s wonderful being able to take a short drive downtown to see a concert of this calibre. Who needs to go to London or Toronto?


Nadine Wark
Sarnia