Sometimes people go through an entire lifetime doing kind, noble, and notable deeds, never to be celebrated for them. To these good souls, a slight that is perceptible to others doesn’t garner a moment’s notice within their routine. There are reasons they do what they do, but personal promotion isn’t one of them. Their thoughts are of others; they are not focused on themselves, or their standing.
Two Snow Lake citizens, who easily fall into the category above, were honoured by the Governor-General of Canada in late May: Lois Charron with the Sovereign’s Medal for Volunteers and Ron Scott with the Order of Military Merit. In addition to this, Ms. Charron was also awarded the Premier’s Volunteer Service Award. I had the occasion to talk/correspond with both of them in respect to the commendations.
Firstly, Lois Charron, 82, is a fixture at most any catered affair in the community. She has worked tirelessly for the Royal Purple, Legion and Legion Auxiliary, Winter Whoot committee, Seniors’ Centre and a host of others over her 58 years in Snow Lake. She is an excellent cook and an outstanding organizer and co-ordinator of events. Lois is a hard worker and a selfless member of any group she is involved in: always there to roll up her sleeves, but forever fading to the background whenever thanks is handed out. She is also known for her well-thought-out opinions and hilarious dry wit.
Ever humble, she advised that friends Annette Lamontagne, Sharon Stubbs, Grace Chrapun and Kim Stephen nominated her for the awards. She was advised of her selection for both honours by phone and took a hard time from family and friends for not travelling down to Winnipeg/Ottawa to accept them in person. Nonetheless, Charron becomes quite emotional when speaking of the recognition and the fuss of it all. “It is a wonderful feeling, but I certainly have not done anything to deserve such an honour,” she states with typical modesty. “I had no idea they were doing this; it was a total surprise, and I know everyone was so disappointed in my decision to not go to the presentation.”
The second person who received one of our country’s highest honours was Snow Lake Canadian Rangers Patrol Commander Sgt. Ronald Glenn Scott, 61. Ron, as he is known, has lived in Snow Lake since early 2007, coming to the town to work as a geologist for Garson Gold. Previous to this, he resided in Sudbury, Ontario and before that, Ottawa. He joined the Canadian Rangers in August 2008 and became patrol commander in July 2009. He had previously served with the Cameron Highlanders of Ottawa for three years in the early 1980s. Scott holds a doctorate in his occupational field and is an active member of the Snow Lake Volunteer Fire Department, in addition to being involved with the local Emergency Measures Organization.
Scott was nominated for the Order of Military Merit in 2016 by Warrant Officer John McNichol, who is the Canadian Ranger Instructor responsible for Snow Lake. The nomination was for management and leadership of the Snow Lake Ranger Patrol.
He first became aware of the nomination after receipt of a phone call from the Group Commanding Officer Lt.-Col. Russ Meades in early December 2018. He was appointed to the Order of Military Merit in October 2018 and the investiture ceremony was held on May 27 at Rideau Hall in Ottawa. Scott and 40 other commanders, officers, and Department of National Defence members were awarded the honour by Gov.-Gen. Julie Payette.
Asked what his feelings were in respect to the award, “I was very surprised and deeply honoured to be appointed to the order,” Scott said. “There are about 1,000 Rangers in the 4th Canadian Ranger Patrol Group, so being selected is a very humbling honour.”