Governor General Presents Awards in Quebec City

Governor General Presents Awards in Quebec City

Canada’s Governor General Distributes 27 Honour Awards to Outstanding Canadians

Article and photos by Job Patstone

GGAwardsSeptQuebec2012_2September 19th was a memorable day for 27 special Canadians who in some way helped, saved or changed the lives of others through their brave acts of unselfishness, either in the line of duty or just because they could.

The ceremony took place in the ballroom of the historical Governor General’s residence situated within the compound of the Citadelle de Quebec. Among the dignitaries present, besides the GG David Johnston himself who presented the awards, were the Commissioner R.W. Paulson, head of the RCMP and former General of the Canadian Military, Walter Natynczyk.

Canada honours it’s heroes by awarding them with citations and medals according to the intensity of their heroic acts. There are different awards for Police and Firefighters, Military personnel, and or extraordinary civilians who reacted professionally in strategic situations.

Today’s ceremony included awards such as Orders of Merit, Military Valour, Decorations for Bravery, Meritorious Service Decorations, and last but not least, Governor General’s Caring Canadians Awards.

The rewards can be given out at any time in a person’s lifetime as we witnessed today for Mme Huguette G. Tremblay, who since 1975 has been helping seniors and the elderly in her hometown of Pierreville, to run errands and who initiated the well known “Meals on Wheels” program for her village. Mme Tremblay was a bit overwhelmed when she received her GG’s Caring Canadians Award.

GGAwardsSeptQuebec2012_3Corporal Marc-André Cousineau, seen here signing the official register, received the Medal of Military Valour (MMV) for having helped save the life of an Afghan soldier during some fierce combat. Together with Corporal J.F. Roger Donald Belzil , who received the Star of Military Valour (SMV), they risked their lives to save another’s.

Another citation was given to Police officer Sergeant Francois Paquette of the MUC police force, who together with Constable Simon Rivard helped save a woman who was trying to take her own life by rolling her wheelchair into the St. Lawrence River. Both officers were entitled to Medal of Bravery (M.B.) recognitions.

These are just a few of the examples of Canadians who have made a difference to someone else’s lives. Whether they’re Military, Law Enforcers or just everyday citizens, the fact that they went out of their way to help someone who needed it justified recognition by our Government, and rightly so.

The event was closed by everyone in the room singing “O Canada” in their preferred language after which was followed by a cocktail and a social gathering for the approximately 150 guests and recipients.

If you want to learn more about Canada’s Honour roll system, you can visit www.gg.ca/honours.

Just a note about the Governor General’s Residence in Quebec City; It is a second residence for the GG, the main home being Rideau Hall in Ottawa. It was built in 1831 as a residence for officers of the British Military, and in 1871 was turned over to the Government of Canada to be used as a temporary dwelling for the Queen’s representative. Lord Dufferin was the first GG to actually use it as a residence in 1872. The building has been refurbished and maintained in respect of the founding of French Canada (New France) and Quebec City by Samuel de Champlain in 1608.

It is open to the public during normal visiting hours and displays many works of art by Canadian artists from all provinces.

Categories: News

About Author

Job Patstone

Job Patstone was born in Hamilton, ON. and has lived in Montreal, Calgary, Edmonton and Red Deer AB. He is presently living in Quebec City, with his wife. He worked for Xerox for 26 years and was an ESL teacher for another ten.

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