Dora and Morrie leave legacy of service to community
STORY BY MELODY FALCONER-POUNDER
Doris Morrison (Morrie) and Dora Warwick posing in their military uniforms.
The year was 1941. For the first time in Canadian history the call went out for women to enlist in women's divisions of the army, navy and air force. According to the CBC Digital Archives website, recruiting films made training bases look like holiday camps and highlighted the newfound glamour of a woman in uniform. By the thousands women answered the call. They left behind roles as homemakers or department store clerks to become "Wrens," "CWACs" and "WDs."
Two such women were Dora Warwick and Marjorie Doris Morrison (Morrie). The pair would later become life long friends. And during their retirement years they would become synonymous not only with one another but with this village as well.
Dora died on Jan. 9 in her 90th year and Morrie followed her on May 2 in her 91st.
Marjorie Doris Morrison was best known as Morrie.
They both leave a legacy of service to country and community.
Dora enlisted in the Canadian Armed Forces in Jan. 1941. Morrie believed her to be the 209th woman to enlist in Toronto’s District 2 – making her service number 2209.
Morrie enlisted in the fall of that same year and was given the number 2309.
Dora was stationed in England making the journey with the boys on a boat bound from Halifax to London. Her service was given in dental offices and mailrooms. In 1946, she traveled aboard the Queen Mary 2 and was discharged from the army upon her arrival in port at New York, NY. A civilian once more Dora went to work for Bell Canada.
Dora Warwick ready to serve.
Morrie was both a 1st Lieutenant and a 2nd Lieutenant but she never left Toronto. Her task was to train other female soldiers to prepare them for service overseas. When the war ended she joined the militia. She wrote her papers and became a Captain with the Royal Canadian Army Service Corp. She was discharged in 1955.
Dora and Morrie lived in Toronto for about 10 years with a group of girls they had met through enlisting. The house was owned by one of the girl’s fathers. Another of the girls was named Heather Ferguson and she would become the individual that would draw Dora and Morrie to Bayfield. (Editor’s note: Heather died on May 4th.) Heather had a cottage in Bayfield and the group of women would make regular visits here. They would also get together at a cottage Dora owned up north. This cottage was remote and only accessible by boat so when Dora decided to retire in the 1970s Bayfield seemed a more suitable place to move too. Morrie retired in the 1980s and Dora invited her to live with her. It was decided that Morrie would be responsible for the “inside stuff” and Dora the “outside stuff”.
And the pair would look after the village together.
Dora was active on committee’s for village council, the historical society, the garden club, ladies’ golf, Bridge clubs and Dining for Seniors. She was the recipient of the Senior of the Year Award in 1997. She worked tirelessly for the Bayfield Lioness Club. She took an active role in starting their Do-It-Yourself Gym, a precursor to all the wonderful fitness groups this village can boast now. And how many tickets did she sell for their annual Penny Sale? She also brought to the village’s attention the need to help the Huron County Christmas Bureau.
Morrie was by her side supporting her in many of these ventures plus a few of her own like, Pioneer Park. Many members of the aforementioned service clubs will recall her special oatmeal cookies that were often served at meetings or sold during fundraisers. Her memory will live on through this treasured recipe.
Rarely apart over the last three decades they were separated by death for only 113 days. But both women have assuredly left an indelible mark on those that were privileged to know them.
Bayfield Believers invite all to drink and dance for a cure
The Bayfield Believers Relay for Life Team have a couple of new fundraising ideas that they are hoping the community will support in their efforts to raise funds for their participation in the Canadian Cancer Society Goderich Relay to be held on June 17.
The first fundraiser will culminate on May 24 when team members will be available to pick up any empty cans or bottles that may have accumulated prior to or over the Victoria Day weekend. Please call 519 565-2545 to arrange pick up. People taking their own empties back to Bayfield Convenience are encouraged to let the store owners know that they are a “Believer” and would like the deposit fees to go to the team.
Then on June 6 supporters are invited to try an evening of hot Latin dancing in support of the team. It’s ZUMBA time!
ZUMBA instructors Alison de Groot and Lorraine Dietz are sure to get participants moving for the cause. The event will be held at Bluewater Shores starting at 7 p.m.
The cost is $10 per person. Participants are asked to come early to get signed in and set up. They should also wear comfy workout type clothes and shoes and bring a water bottle.
For info please contact Kelly Gerger at 519 441-7386 or email: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Local pair share adventures volunteering in Cambodia
Gordon Fraser taught basic woodworking during a winter spent in Cambodia. (Submitted photo)
Bayfield residents, Dorothy Griffith and Gordon Fraser could spend their winters anywhere in the world, yet for the past two years they have chosen to spend their time volunteering at orphanages and schools in Cambodia. They stepped out of their personal comfort zones to experience first hand, the challenges and triumphs of a group of people who are rebuilding their lives from the killing fields of war.
On May 23rd, Griffith and Fraser will talk about why they chose to go to Cambodia, what they did when they got there and their adventures.
Griffith said, " Our experiences have fundamentally touched us and changed our perceptions of the world. The people we have met and worked with in Cambodia have and are experiencing incredible hardships yet they are warm and caring. The things that we do with them seem so small, yet, we can see that it makes a positive difference in their lives. We are returning next winter."
The Bayfield Historical Society will host this presentation beginning at 7:30 p.m. in the Bayfield Lions’ Community Building.
Dorothy Griffith with some friends at an orphanage in Cambodia. (Submitted photo)
BRVTA to sponsor screening of Waterlife
Five Great Lakes – one last chance.
The Bayfield River Valley Trail Association (BRVTA) is hosting the award-winning film, Waterlife on June 2 at 7 p.m. at The Bayfield Town Hall, in partnership with the Healthy Headwaters Wetlands Initiative and Ausable Bayfield Conservation Authority (ABCA). There is no charge but free will donations to the BRVTA are welcome.
“We are proud to be a sponsor of this event,” said Dave Gillians, president of the BRVTA. “For the past four years, trail association members have been working hard on our local hiking trails initiative that we hope will make a positive difference for future generations.”
The film features narration by Gord Downie, of hit musical group, The Tragically Hip. There are also views from scientists, First Nations people, anglers and other people who have an interest in the future of “the last great supply of fresh drinking water on earth.”
“Waterlife is thought-provoking and gives us a better understanding about what is happening to humanity’s greatest fresh-water resource,” said Gillians.
He stressed the importance of working together to protect the Great Lakes from pollution.
“Unless we learn from our past mistakes, our lasting legacy may be the unintended consequences of pollution.”
Ray Letheren, of Bayfield, will introduce the film and at the conclusion of its presentation a short question and answer session will follow.
After viewing the film’s lyrical look at the beauty of the Great Lakes and the ecological problems these bodies of water face, there will be a short presentation on phragmites. Jim Fergusson, will speak to his experience with control of this invasive plant as former area weed inspector for Oxford County. Plus ABCA’s Tim Cumming will share some ways local residents can protect and improve water quality.
For more information on this thought-provoking event visit brvt.huronstewardship.on.ca or abca.on.ca.
Saturday performance of production now sold out
Judge Madison as portrayed by Judith Gooding.
Theatre-goers will have the opportunity to possibly exonerate a Bayfield boy of a murder committed 114 years ago.
“Murder at the Albion Hotel: The Retrial of Fred Elliott” is an original production being staged by the Bayfield Historical Society.
In 1897, young Harvey Elliott was murdered outside the Albion Hotel after a drunken argument with his brother Fred.
Local playwright/director, Judy Keightley has created an entertaining production that is loosely based on this very tragic event. The premise is that two local ladies of dubious character come forward with new evidence, after Fred Elliott, portrayed by Travis Corben, has already served two years in penitentiary for the murder of his brother Harvey.
The Clerk of the Court will be played by Nigel Hutton.
Since these ladies will be offering some controversial new testimony, emotions are sure to run high. The officers of the court will be busy keeping order.
Judge Madison, portrayed by Judith Gooding, is a no-nonsence type of judge who won't tolerate any disruption in the court. The Clerk of the Court, played by Nigel Hutton, has the unenviable job of maintaining order and keeping things under control. Fortunately for the clerk, he has a fearsome court policeman, portrayed by Bob Merrimen, who if called upon, will be glad to enforce order. If necessary, he will even escort the unruly from the building.
Bob Merrimen as the court policeman.
Two shows will be held at 7:30 p.m. in the Bayfield Town Hall on May 27 and 28. A matinee will also be staged in the hall at 2 p.m. on May 29. Organizers are pleased to report that the Saturday show is now sold out and limited tickets are available for Friday night. So if people wish to see this original production they best get their seats now to avoid disappointment.
Tickets cost $15 each and are available at the Bayfield Archives Room or by calling Dave Gillians at 519 565-5884.
The congregation of St. Andrew’s United Church would like to invite all in the community to their Spring May Pole Luncheon to be held on May 18. All in the community are invited to take part in the meal that will offer continuous sittings starting at 11 a.m. The cost is $10 a person.
The congregation of Trinity Anglican Church is now gearing up for their annual sale to be held on the Victoria Day Weekend.
They are accepting donations by appointment or on the afternoon of May 18th. Please call Gayle King at 519 565-5664 to arrange to drop gently used items off at the Parish Hall.
A highlight of the sale is always the vast variety of perennials donated by parishioners. The plant portion of the sale will begin at 8 a.m. on May 20th. The other goods, including a large selection of books collected by Bayfield Guiding, will be available for purchase from noon to 7 p.m. Other sale times are 8 a.m. to mid-afternoon, May 21 and 11 a.m. to mid-afternoon, May 22.
The Bayfield Lions’ Club will host their annual Victoria Day Weekend Breakfast on May 22 at the Bayfield Arena.
The Lions’ membership will be flipping pancakes and cracking eggs from 9 a.m to 12:30 p.m.
Rubber Duckie, you’re so fine
And I’m lucky that you’re mine
Rubber Duckie, I’m awfully fond of –
Rubber Duckie, I’d like a whole pond of –
Rubber Duckie I’m awfully fond of you!”
Well, there might not be a pond but members of the Bayfield Optimist Club are hoping that a whole river full of rubber ducks will be sold for their upcoming second annual Rubber Duck Race on May 22.
The race will be held between the piers at the harbor’s mouth at 11 a.m. on the Sunday of the Victoria Day weekend.
Only 500 ducks are available and tickets are on sale now for $5 each at Brandon’s Hardware and from club members.
Three lucky people will be singing the old Sesame Street classic when their rubber ducks are the first to cross the finish line. The following prizes will be awarded to the three fastest ducks: 1st place, a 2011 Norco Hybrid Bicycle, donated by Outside Projects; 2nd place, a water cooler, donated by Bayfield Garage-Auto Pro; 3rd place, a $100 gift certificate for the Black Dog Village Pub and Bistro.
Proceeds from the event will be used for youth related community projects.
Dorothy Griffith, of Bayfield, is an enthusiastic member of the Clinton Communicators and she would like to invite others in the community to join this local branch of Toastmasters.
Toastmasters is a non-profit organization whose purpose is to assist members improve their communication, public speaking and leadership skills in a supportive environment. The Clinton Communicators has members from Goderich, Clinton, Seaforth and Bayfield.
In an effort to spread the enthusiasm the club will be holding an open meeting at 7:30 p.m. on June 7 in the meeting room of the Children's Aid Society, 413 MacEwan St. East, Goderich. All are welcome to attend.
For more information please contact Griffith at 519 565-2879.
The JMR Art Gallery has relocated to its new location on Main Street and this coming weekend they will play host to the two artists that are the creators behind their first exhibit or the season.
Creativity does not skip a generation as seen in the exhibit entitled, “A Father and Son Create”. This exhibit showcases the talents of 2010 Ontario Photographic Artist of the Year, Nelson Simard and his son Encaustic (wax) Artist Eric Gaston Simard. The show will run until Father’s Day.
People will have the opportunity to meet these two gentlemen on May 21 from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.
Gallery Owner and Glass Artist Judy M. Roth will also demonstrate the art of stained glass in the galleries new studio space. For more information visit www.jmrgallery.com.
Festival of song
Mozart famously said: “Melody is the essence of music.” Huron County will be melodious indeed as Stephen Ralls and Bruce Ubukata, artistic directors for The Aldeburgh Connection, again enchant with the art of song during the fifth annual Bayfield Festival of Song, June 3-12.
Both established artists as well as those on the brink of celebrity will perform the concerts. Ralls and Ubukata, renowned pianists, will accompany the young singers at the coffee concerts and the Sunday concerts, the latter offering a meet-the-artists reception. Throughout the week, the ensemble will again introduce about 2,000 Huron County school children to the art of song.
Celebrity concerts will be held on Friday and Saturday evenings. On Thursday, the Master Class will provide a behind-the-scenes look at the sensitive discipline of vocal training, and mentoring. After the Master Class, The Little Inn will be hosting a bistro for the musicians and audience.
All concerts again take place at the Bayfield Town Hall. To order tickets call Gail Grant at 519 565-2435 or email email@example.com.
Wild Turkeys and hikers beware it’s hunting season again.
The Bayfield River Valley Trail Association (BRVTA) would like to let the community know that the Woodland Trail will be closed from now until May 31 for the Wild Turkey Hunt.
The other two BRVTA trails remain open, the Heritage Trail, through the village, as well as the Sawmill Trail, on the north side of the Bayfield River. Other local trails, such as, Bannockburn and Naftel’s Creek do not permit hunting and are available to walkers throughout the year.
There is one show show remaining in the Bayfield Film Society’s spring series. “Incendies” will close out the series on June 16.
The film will be shown at the Bayfield Town Hall starting at 7:30 p.m.
To learn more about tickets for these productions please contact Jane Rowat 519 565-5838 or Lynne Gillians 519 565-5884.
Organizers are are pleased to announce that Ron Sexsmith will be retuning this summer for another unique and intimate show on July 22.
Tickets for Ron Sexsmith's annual Summer Show at The Bayfield Town Hall are available now at www.ticketscene.ca.
Tickets cost $35 each for the show that will begin at 8:30 p.m. (doors open 8 p.m.)
Ron Sexsmith is a Canadian singer-songwriter from St. Catharines, ON, currently based in Toronto. He started his own band when he was 14 years old and released the first recordings of his own material seven years later, in 1985. Some of the same artists who inspired Sexsmith—Paul McCartney, Elvis Costello, Ray Davies and John Hiatt are now people whose praise he has won.
Spring is here and there is still time to resolve to get fit for Summer!
Bayfield residents can join the Zumba craze as classes are now being held in the village. Zumba is a dance fitness class that combines Latin rhythms and easy to follow moves, creating a calorie burning dance party suitable for all ages.
ZUMBA classes continue in the village with Instructors, Alison de Groot and Lorraine Dietz. One-hour classes are held Monday mornings starting at 9:30 a.m. at the Bayfield Town Hall and Thursday evenings at 7 p.m. at the Bayfield Community Centre. For more information contact de Groot at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The following activities are scheduled to run from now until August.
Dancefit and Toning classes are held on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays at 9 a.m. The cost is $40 for four months or $3 per class. The Sit and Get Fit classes are offered on Mondays and Wednesdays at 10:15 a.m. The cost is $1 per class.
Both of these fitness opportunities are held at the Bayfield Community Centre.
For the more adventurous among us, there is Pole Walking. Walks for women will start at 8:30 a.m. on Tuesdays and Thursdays, while the men can venture out on Mondays and Fridays at 8:30 a.m. All walks begin from 6 Main Street and poles are provided free for those who require them.
Beginning on May 10, a Yoga Class will be held at the Bayfield Town Hall starting at 10 a.m. on Tuesdays. The cost is $3 per class and participants are asked to bring a beach towel.
Call 519 565-2202 for more information on the above exercise opportunities.
For those people looking to exercise their minds, Women’s Bridge is played every Wednesday at 1 p.m. No partner needed to play the cost is $1.50 per game. For more information call Brenda Blair 519 565-2881.
Mah Jongg games and lessons are also offered on the first and third Mondays of the month starting at 1 p.m. Call 519 565-2468 for more information.
Both Bridge and Mah Jongg are played at the Bayfield Lions’ Community Building.
Bridge lessons and Duplicate Bridge games are offered in Goderich. Tom Rajnovich is the Goderich bridge contact 519 524-6374.
Flo Keillor and Rob McFarlane were the high scorers when the Wednesday Evening Bridge Club met on May 11 at the Bayfield Lions’ Community Building.
May 25th is the date for the club’s next games. The cards will be dealt starting at 7 p.m. All are welcome to attend.