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Prevalence of kindness and decency

Lisa Sygutek

Feb 7, 2024

When you live in a small town the people in it truly become your tribe.

When you live in a small town the people in it truly become your tribe. Beyond the negativity of social media in this town, there is still a prevalence for kindness and decency when it comes to the people who make up the fabric of our community. 

I look around and see so much hope. Last night I was at a Family Community Support Services meeting where we talked about the Christmas Food Hampers. We packed and delivered 150 baskets to people in our community, feeding the most vulnerable. 

I look at the Blairmore Lions, they are at every event this community has to offer cooking and serving, always with laughs and smiles. I watched them dancing together in joy at one of the markets Tynan Groves was singing at with his beautiful voice. 

I see Northback donating $75,000 to the Livingstone Range School Division to feed the students in our schools. This corporate sponsor just donated $10,000 to retrofit the van for the Crowsnest Cruisers to help the most vulnerable in our community with transportation. 

Recently I listened to a presentation by Crowsnest Cruisers representatives Rick Jeune and Pauline Desjardines, who outlined a new transportation program for seniors in the community. The service enables older Crowsnest residents with mobility issues to access affordable, assisted transportation so they can go to and from medical appointments, social services, banking and other destinations and social events. This groups saw a need and did something to rectify it. 

We have so many wonderful people and groups in this community, and I often think we get mired in the negativity of social media posts, but if you look around you see so many remarkable altruistic endeavours.

We have the newly invigorated Southwest Alberta Regional Search and Rescue (SARSAR) based here in the Crowsnest Pass. As recreational growth has been exponential in our region with trails such as the Great Divide and an expanse of mountain biking and hiking activity, it has become necessary to have volunteer organizations such as SARSAR here to assist the public during times of crisis. Vice President Andrew Fairhurst and Director-at-Large Ryan Legroulx recently attended Council to give a presentation on their mandate. I know I feel much safer in the back country knowing they are around. My feeling is this group will eventually become one of the premier volunteer search and rescue groups in the country.

I love this community, not because my family has lived here for five generations, but because of the people. It’s a small area built on tragedy, but that tragedy also makes it a place filled with gratitude and appreciation for what we have, not for what we don’t.

Recently we lost one of the people I truly feel exemplified this community with the passing Troy Missghers. As a novice hiker compared to him, he was the go-to when I was looking for routes up toughest peaks, or trails to ski down in the back country. He always answered by texts, gave me thumbs up when I did difficult climbs and always, always had that wonderful smile. I often was in awe of his love of the backcountry and love our community and boy could he roast an amazing coffee bean. This community is a little less without him in it. He truly left an impact in ways I’m sure he didn’t even know. My thoughts and prayers go out to Christine and all his family.

I’m heading out of country next week for work. We are a small group here at the office, so I decided to shut the office down for a week. Nick can concentrate on the news and Tina the ads without having to worry about running the shop. We will have a paper out, just not the doors open. Take care, hug your family a little closer and when you read the negativity on social media remind yourself as I do that we really do live in the Garden of Eden!

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