Now that Spring has finally come and many of our members who venture South for the winter have returned, it is time to attempt to increase our association membership. We currently are somewhat stagnant at 515 members. We have tried may ways to increase membership and while some ways have had modest success many have failed. We realize we need your assistance. This month our newsletter is being sent out, to not only members, but also non-members. We encourage all of you to assist us in finding lost contacts, the missing, and encouraging alumni to join the association.

Spring is a special time for me as it allows me to sit out on my deck and view Bedford Basin in Halifax Harbour and watch the comings and departures of container ships, gypsum freighters, and Canadian Coast Guard vessels. Yesterday I was able to see with my binoculars the arrival and docking of the CCGS Cape Roger on which my grandson Matthew is currently serving as part of his Coast Guard College training as a Marine Engineer.

We look forward to hearing from you all and thank you for your continued support.

Angus Cross

C'60 - Editor, Alumni Connection

Welcome New Alumni Association Members and renewed Members

New Life Member
Norm Fraser
Class of 1966
from Peachland, BC

New Regular Member
Bill Green
Class of 1954
from Waterdown, ON

Renewed Membership
Ruth Maben (Townshend)
Class of 1953
from Oakville, ON

Renewed Membership
Douglas Smith
Class of 1965
from Greenfield Park, QC

New Regular Member
Peter Johnston
Class of 1970
from unknown

Renewed Membership
Tom McNeilly
Class of 1960
from Lethbridge, AB

Renewed Membership
Flo Hinks (Trudeau)
Class of 1960
from Prince George, BC

Renewed Membership
Seaforth Lyle
Class of 1953
from Naples, FL. USA

Renewed Membership
David Corbeil
Class of 1966
from unknown

To renew your membership visit
Renew your membership
for membership options and payment plans.

Memberships expiring in May
Blackstock   Pam  1969
Charlton Robert 1963

Recently terminated memberships
Tomlinson Paul Vernon 1959
Bulmer John 1959
Gloutney Ann Marie 1980
Reid (Mac Millan) Lillian 1959
Hendricks David 1982
Zakaib Ann 1989
MacLean Rod  1980
Kennedy Gordon  1967
Leger Barbara 1964
If you are in contact with any of these people please encourage them to rejoin the associaton.


We have lost contact with the following alumni. Perhaps this is due to them changing their email address and not notifying us.
DeGruchy (Campbell) Pat 1967
Byczak Michael Anthony 1966
Connell (Lloyd) Barbara 1963
Bradley David 1971
John Wright 1960
Jane Ralston (Fursey) 1964

If you are in contact with any of these people please encourage them to email Angus Cross


Best Habs joke so far (and I'm a Habs fan)

Guy Lafleur was on HNIC talking to Ron McLean. Ron says, " Guy, you were on that incredible Canadiens team in the 1970s, maybe the greatest ever in the NHL. How would that team do against this year's Canadiens?" Guy thinks for a second and says, "I think we'd win by a goal or two". Ron, incredulous, says, "Only a goal or two? But this years team is maybe the worst Habs team ever." Guy says, " Yes Ron, but you have to remember most of us are in our 70s and out of shape."

Dave Erskine C'63

Life Member from Blenheim, ON

Peter Payan

Thanks, Angus, for another excellent edition of the Newsletter.

I really enjoyed Lillian's story titled 'Why Sweden' with its family
history. I also enjoyed the drawings for the Alumni Garden Project.

I can still remember making those tables in the classroom and hall,
then squeezing them sideways through the two doors and into the parking lot.

Again, Bravo for all your work assembling the Newsletter. Although I no longer
am a member of the committee, each edition brings the memories of it and
the other members back to me.

Peter Payan

C'59 Life Member, from Montreal, QC

Speaking of Portugal.......I found my last visit there to be very, very stressful....we cruised the Douro river. Every day there was wine tasting and we had to learn the 3 different types of port wines, not just by colour but by was so stressful, in fact I had to re-taste the port wines several times, every single day, just to insure I knew which was the finest.

Peter Ineson

C'60 Regular Member, from Halifax, NS

I attended St-Lambert Elementary from 1976-1979 - I was wondering if there as a list of the old teachers and principals anywhere?

Also, I remember it being featured on the Nature of Things with David Suzuki but no one else seems to recall it and I can't find it in any archives.

Would be kind of nice to have some of this information, maybe someone else might have better luck!

Joel Gillis - Email:

I have been in contact with an old friend, Nan Baird-Campbell, recently who is planning a relocation this summer and has started a major clean up/clean out. She has several old CCHS annuals (approx 1961-66, I believe) and asked me if I wanted them (NO, no space either) but I wondered if there might be CCHS archives somewhere that could use these or if there might be some old alumni who would like to give them a good home or just enjoy a last laugh at the Good Old Days. Any suggestions at your end?
If interested please contact me

Patricia (Pee-Wee) Middleton

C'65 Life Member, from town of Mount Royal, QC

What was the best job you ever had?

What was the best job you ever had? Please contact Angus Cross at


By Lilian Puust (Soomet)
C’57 Life Member
From Toronto, ON

I do not speak English. I do not understand what people who I meet are saying. I only speak Estonian and a tiny bit of Swedish. I am seven.
Two days after arriving in Montreal in mid-December, we visit Aunt Rande, my mother’s youngest sister. My mother says that she came from Estonia to Canada on an adventure when she was nineteen.

She married Martin. They have lived in Montreal for a few years. Rande and Martin have big smiles when they come to the door. They are saying something, but I don’t know what it is. Rande tells us in Estonian that she has trouble remembering how to speak Estonian. It’s been a while since she last spoke the language.
Rande calls Martin “Honey.”
“Why are you calling him a goose?” asks my mother, puzzled.
“Don’t be silly, Lya, “honey” means “mesi,” says Rande. We laugh, since “honey” in English and “hani” for “goose” in Estonian sound exactly the same.
“Strange,” I think. “Honey is good on bread, but why would anyone want to call a man after something you put on bread?”

“Täubchen,” Martin says to Rande. He likes that word. It’s soft and round. His face is happy when he says it while looking at her.
“Täubchen” is German for “pigeon,” my mother tells me. I am thinking, “Why would he call her after the fat birds that don’t fly much, and waddle about in the park looking for crumbs?”
“Täubchen” is more like “little dove,” explains my father. “Tuvi” in Estonian means either pigeon or dove. I like visualizing little soft doves much more.
I often don’t know what Rande and Martin are saying, but it is like listening to a happy song on the radio, when you don’t care about the words.
I start school at the beginning of February. By June, after four and a half months, I can read and write English quite well. I also manage to speak English and pass Grade Two. We have lived with Aunt Ady, my mother’s oldest sister, since we arrived in Canada. She has barely any room for us. School is over. It is summer. Now we are moving to Aunt Rande’s in Snowdon. I love both my aunts, but Ady and Rande do not speak to each other or visit each other. Ady never even mentions them.
“It is because Ady used to be married to Martin,” my mother tells me. I am so puzzled.

Rande and Martin live on a quiet street on the first floor of a duplex. It has a back yard and a little porch in front. They don’t have any more room for us than Aunt Ady did. My parents and I move into their living room.

My father has a terrible job. It has nothing to do with what he did before. In Estonia he organized the police, was a lawyer and was in the government keeping the country safe. In Sweden he worked at a museum. He knows how to do a lot things. In Canada, he has to find a job right away. He talks to the Law department at McGill about what he could do here. They tell him he would have to start from the beginning, and get a new degree, but he could do his Master’s, if he wanted. So, he takes a job at Simpson’s pushing large heavy carts to wherever they need to go. What is terrible is that I hear him telling someone that there is a French-Canadian man who purposefully keeps ramming into my father with his cart. “Why?” That makes me angry, and I want to cry. “It is temporary,” says my father. “I will find something else.”
I miss Lois who lives near Aunt Ady. I also miss the two boys who were my playmates in Sweden. Rande and Martin have a little boy and a little girl. I play with them, but I would like to play with someone around my age. I am reading on the front steps when two boys come by, Jimmy and Tommy. Tommy talks a lot. He knows a lot too. His favourite game is “Truth or Dare.” Jimmy has blond curly hair. I think he is a “dream boat,” though I am not sure what that is.

We explore the neighborhood, climb inside a house being built, and look at the pictures on the outside of the Snowdon movie theater. We pretend to know what the movies are about, but we cannot see them.

My favourite times are reading comics together, side by side with Jimmy.
“Can you come to my house for dinner tomorrow?” asks Jimmy.
“Yes, of course I can,” I say, but worry about talking with his parents.
Jimmy’s family is seated around a large dining room table. What if they ask me something? What will I say?
In the middle of the meat course Jimmy’s father asks, “So tell me, what happened to your country during the war?”
I don’t know how to answer that. No one has asked me anything like that before. Do children in Canada have to answer questions that I have only heard adults talking about? I thought adults knew everything, and that we would ask them if we wanted to know something.
I have to answer. So, I think of what I know. “There is a tall tower in Tallinn where the Estonian blue black and white flag flew. The Russian army came and tore it down and put up their red flag.”
“Oh, what did that mean?” says Mrs. McManus. Oh oh. Doesn’t she know? What can I say now? I have heard adults talking in Estonian about this. It is so hard to talk about it in English.
“The Russian soldiers came and said that they were taking our country,” I say after thinking it over.
“What happened to people?” asks Mrs. McManus.
“People escaped. Not everyone could. People tried to escape,” I answer. I am glad when they stop asking questions.
Thankfully, Jimmy then asks me, “Have you heard about St. Joseph’s Oratory?”
“No,” I reply.
Jimmy thinks we should go and see it. I ask my mother and she thinks it is all right. Next day, as we start walking we see a girl who the boys know. She is by herself in her front yard. They ask her if she wants to come too. She is nine years old, much older than I am.
“I am not allowed to leave my front yard,” she says. I feel sorry for her, that she is not allowed to explore the world. That would never happen in Sweden.

It is a long walk from Mountain Sights to the Oratory high on the side of the mountain. I have never seen anything like it. The church is so big. It must be made for a giant. Maybe you can see all the way to the other side of the mountain from the top. There are so many steps up the hill, just to get to the front door. Some people are going up the steps on their knees.
“Why?” I wonder.
Some look like they are in pain doing that. The boys and I scamper up the regular stairs. The boys know about Brother Andre and that he healed a lot of people. “Here are all the crutches the healed left behind,” says Tommy. There are piles and piles of crutches. I am puzzled, and I would like to believe it.
“Soon we will see Brother Andre’s heart,” says Jimmy.
There is a long line-up of people near a glass case which holds the heart. When we get closer, it looks very small and faded, like it has been in the sun too long. I feel strange looking at it. Why would they cut out his heart? I find many things new and strange in Canada.
September comes. Jimmy and Tommy go to school. They say I should be going too, but my father says that he has a new plan for us. We will be moving again soon.
“I don’t want to leave Jimmy and Tommy ...”
“We are moving to a farm,” says my father. “You are going to like living at Malvet’s farm.”

Next chapter: “Malvet’s farm.”

Life in the Australian Army...
Text of a letter from a kid from Eromanga to Mum and Dad. (For Those of you not in the know, Eromanga is a small town, west of Quilpie in the far south west of Queensland)

Dear Mum & Dad,

I am well. Hope youse are too. Tell me big brothers Doug and Phil that the Army is better than workin' on the farm - tell them to get in bloody quick smart before the jobs are all gone!
I wuz a bit slow in settling down at first, because ya don't hafta get outta bed until 6am. But I like sleeping in now, cuz all ya gotta do before brekky is make ya bed and shine ya boots and clean ya uniform. No bloody cows to milk, no calves to feed, no feed to stack - nothin'!! Ya haz gotta shower though, but its not so bad, coz there's lotsa hot water and even a light to see what ya doing!

At brekky ya get cereal, fruit and eggs but there's no kangaroo steaks or possum stew like wot Mum makes. You don't get fed again until noon and by that time all the city boys are buggered because we've been on a 'route march' - geez its only just like walking to the windmill in the back paddock!!

This one will kill me brothers Doug and Phil with laughter. I keep getting medals for shootin' - dunno why.
The bullseye is as big as a bloody possum's bum and it don't move and it's not firing back at ya like the Johnsons did when our big scrubber bull got into their prize cows before the Ekka last year!
All ya gotta do is make yourself comfortable and hit the target - it's a piece of piss!! You don't even load your own cartridges, they comes in little boxes, and ya don't have to steady yourself against the rollbar of the roo shooting truck when you reload!

Sometimes ya gotta wrestle with the city boys and I gotta be real careful coz they break easy - it's not like fighting with Doug and Phil and Jack and Boori and Steve and Muzza all at once like we do at home after the muster.
Turns out I'm not a bad boxer either and it looks like I'm the best the platoon's got, and I've only been beaten by this one bloke from the Engineers - he's 6 foot 5 and 15 stone and three pick handles across the shoulders and as ya know I'm only 5 foot 7 and eight stone wringin' wet, but I fought him till the other blokes carried me off to the boozer.

I can't complain about the Army - tell the boys to get in quick before word gets around how bloody good it is.

Your loving daughter,


Jim Baxter

C'67 Life Member from Calgary, AB

Class Contacts Needed

If you are interested in representing your class year as Class Contact. Please contact Angus Cross at

Keeping the Connection

Tom Ventser C'76 with Mimi Pothaar (Vezina) C'76 at Banff Sunshine Village.

High school reunion time! It was a great treat to spend the day skiing with my old friend (and locker mate) Mimi Vezina..


Kendra Dorothy BROWN, (01/22/1944 - 01/28/2018) CCHS Class of 1961

Passed away peacefully on Sunday, January 28th, surrounded by her family, after a long battle with cancer. She is survived by her husband Reg Young, children Alan Doak (Erin), Andrea Stewart (Mike) and Alexandra Williams (Jarrod) and her grandchildren Teagan, Natasha, Penelope, Ella, Jillian, Isla, Julia, and Vaughn.
Born in Quebec and raised in Montreal and the Eastern Townships (Ayer's Cliff), Kendra had a strong connection to her roots and a love of her immediate and extended family. She lived most of her life on the path less traveled by others, where adventure and laughter were never hard to find.

I have discovered as I got older I found myself wondering what happened to my friends of youth. I therefore decided to message you about my brother, Laurence Bernthal

He was a student at CCHS during the late 60's but returned to the UK before the end of High School. Last year Laurence passed away at the age of 62 and in his effects his wife found a copy of Route 69, a year book from CCHS. So if there is anybody in your group wondering what happened to Laurence you can tell them that he has passed.

Tony Bernthal

If you notice an obituary of a classmate in your local paper
please forward details to Angus Cross at

And Finally...

Why does a chicken coop only have two doors?

Because if it had four it would be a chicken sedan.

I would like to share a personal experience with my friends and family about drinking and driving.
As you know, some of us have been known to have brushes with the authorities from time to time, often on the way home after a "social session" with family or friends.

Well, two days ago, this happened to me. I was out for an evening with friends and had more than several beers followed by a couple of bottles of rather nice red wine and a few tequila shots. Although relaxed, I still had the common sense to know I was slightly over the limit.
That's when I did something slightly different - I took a taxi home.
Sure enough on the way there was a police roadblock, but since it was a taxi they waved it past and I arrived home safely without incident.
This was a real surprise to me, because I had never driven a taxi before.
I don't know where I got it, and now that it's in my garage I don't know what to do with it.
So, anyway, if you want to borrow it give me a call.