Senior Situation Room by Dawn Ford – 100th Column! JULY 9, 2017


Cornwall Ontario – “The Friendly Town That Grew…A Reminiscence of Cornwall, Ontario” is a delightful book written by Eileen Merkley about her growing- up days in Cornwall in the 30’s and 40’s. She wrote it in 1978 and has also included poems she wrote about the Cornwallis Hotel, The Capital Theatre and the Lloyd George Hotel among others. Cost of the book at that time was $3.25.

I bought the book 1991. I don’t remember where I purchased it but I do remember enjoying all the old memories of days gone by in Cornwall since many of the places and things she mentioned were still there when a lot of us were growing up.

Eileen wrote about the Ice House on Sydney street. I remember the ice man bringing a huge chunk of ice on big tongs for our ice box. Central Park, nicknamed ‘The Park’ at the time, now Horovitz Park, was home to so many of us who swam all summer long at “the pool”. She writes also about the old street cars and the Capital Theatre, the Canal, Lover’s Lane , and the Bywash among many other places and people in Cornwall. The Silver Bridge, was another favourite place to swim and we dove off that shaky old bridge.

She wrote about the Pectus Chip Stand near the park and the fun of sucking on the vinegary bottom of the paper cone shaped chip bags which we all did. My brother Ed Herrington worked there all through his high school days for John Pectus. Another memory was when she referred to a big “No NO’ about jumping off the Roosevelt International Bridge. My brother Ed and his friends did that often.

Eileen grew up on 28 Augustus Street where one of our senior residences is located today. I remember Nelson Alquire’s family lived on that the street area because I went to school with his daughter Sandra. Also, Mrs. Lena MacDougall, mother of Ranny, was still living there in the early 80’s because I remember going there to visit her with her daughter-in-law, Veronica. Lena had attended the old one room Nativity School down the east front with my Mom.

Eileen also mentioned the Spinella family. As many of you will remember, Mr. Spinella used to come around each evening with his horse-drawn cart and sell us ice cream cones. That was the big excitement of the day sometimes when we were kids.

It is a wonderful book for anyone who grew up in Cornwall, especially before 1978 or anyone who wants to know what Cornwall was like at the time. The nostalgia though is that there are not a lot of places still left in Cornwall that she wrote about, including Domtar.

The book is available to purchase on line and there is a copy at the Cornwall Public Library. (613-932-4796)

Ed Lauzon gave another great concert recently at Beek Lindsay and it was attended by residents and guests. This was the first time I was able to attend and I have to say, it was wonderful. Ed has a very pleasing and mellow voice when he sings and I could have listened to his guitar music and singing for hours.

He delighted us all with songs we could all sing along with which is always fun. He has an extensive repertoire of music which included Country and Western songs such as:”Room Full of Roses, Crazy Arms, Cowboy Boogie, Margaritaville, and I Can’t Help Falling in Love with You.”. He sang lots of Pop and Rock and Roll such as:”Under the Boardwalk, Brown-eyed Girl, Sunday Morning Coming Down, Johnny Be-Good”, Teenager in Love, Ghost Rider in the Sky, Unchained Melody, Whole Lot of Shaking Goin’ On and The Twist. He gave a beautiful rendition of Amazing Grace and One Cloudy Morning and John Denver’s, It’s Good to Be Back Home Again.

We not only sang but danced also.A few ladies got up and did some line dancing to the music which was fun to watch. Edna Dory, 101 years old danced also and she was delightful to watch because it was as if she was 20 years old and so agile and light on her feet. It was nice to see her having a great time.

Ed, thanks again for bringing so much enjoyment to the residents and their guests. ( Next concert I will ask him to play Bobby Darin’s “Splish Splash…that should be fun.)

Here is a photo of Ed and Brenda Connelly, courtesy of Brenda:

I received Meals On Wheels for a few weeks. It was a treat not having to cook everyday for awhile.The meals included soup, salad, entree and dessert. I really liked the fish dishes and the mashed potatoes were the very best. The co-ordinator, Andree Anne Morin is available to assist and is so interested in helping people using this program. It certainly is a big help for those needing good nutricous meals. A big thank you to Andree and the Dietary Staff at the Glen Stor Dun Lodge and everyone involved with this wonderful program.

The volunteers were very nice and always delivered the food to my door with a big smile. Thank you so much for giving your time to help this program.

The cost is $140 monthly. For more information on the Meals On Wheels program, call 613-933-3384, ext. 4263.

Child Haven International’s latest newsletter, as always, has many photos of smiling happy busy children. It is a pleasure to read. CHI , a registered charity, was founded in 1985 by Fred and Bonnie Cappucino of Maxville, ON and Dr. Nat Shah of Cornwall. They co-founded CHI to help destitute children and women. There are 10 projects in 4 countries: Bangladesh, Tibet in China, India and Nepal.

Overseas Interns are needed. A commitment of 3-6 months is asked to volunteer in India, Nepal or Bangladesh. Please contact the office in Maxville at 613-527-2829 for more information .

The newsletter has many beautiful photos of children displaying their art work, playing, working and lots of interesting stories about some of the children. The newsletter can be seen at:

Here are some of the children having fun in the home in Bangledash:

They always finish their newsletter with a quote from Rabindranath Tagore:

“Let me Light my lamp. says the star,

And never debate if it will dispel the dark.”

Always inspiring for all of us.

Here are two very beautiful seniors enjoying a relaxing evening: Dorothy Sullivan and Evelyn McPhail. A new gazebo was being constructed at their seniors residence. They took advantage of the shade it provided. Nice place to relax, visit and read.

Here are a few cute jokes from a reader:

Teacher: How old is your father?

Kid: He is 6 years old.

Teacher: How can that be?

Kid: He became a father only when I was born.

Teacher: Marie, go to the board and point out North America.

Marie: Here it is.

Teacher: Correct. Now, class, who discovered America?

Class: Marie.

Teacher : Donald, what is the chemical formula for water?


Teacher: What are you talking about?

Donald: Yesterday you said H to O.

Have a good week, Dawn


  1. One of the nicest and best people that Cornwall ever produced was Dawn and I mean that fully. You see the seniors sitting down in their wheelchairs that is the best generation but not the people of today at all. I feel so horrible to live nowadays and have my kids growing up in todays society that is so mighty evil. I send Dawn and all the good seniors my best. Todays society makes me very sic

  2. Your delightful articles are wonderful. I find myself smiling the entire time I am reading. Congratulations on the 100th column…WOW!! Please keep writing the column.

  3. Author

    Hi everyone. Your humble editor here. We’re trying to put together a book of Dawn’s first 100 columns. If you really want to see it happen please email as we’ve asked the city for the standard support for a strongly local artistic creation and still haven’t had a single reply from the city.

    We also will be creating a indigogo campaign for pre-orders. We’d like to make this book as special as possible, and will need everyone’s help to make Cornwall proud as Dawn deserves the best after nearly five years of columns! And yes, part of the proceeds from the book will be going to the charity of Dawn’s choice!

  4. Dawn, congratulations on Column 100th.

  5. Dawn always puts together great stories of the past and the present but I love the stories of the past and some that I can relate to. Dawn is a great writer and a great person and a book with her stories is a great idea. Congratulations Dawn I love reading what you write.

  6. Jules, thank you so much. I am glad you enjoy the columns.

  7. Dawn I always enjoy your columns and you are one of the very best people in Cornwall. You are tops dear lady. I was bitten by mosquitos for the past week while walking in the park here in Ottawa and I have been putting alcohol on and with this humidity all I want to do is to sleep. I had to get up and do things around here and plenty to do.

  8. Really enjoy seeing the pictures of ‘old Cornwall’ when we were growing up. What a shame the post office was demolished. It was a great building. I have my Mom’s copy of that book. This will inspire me to find it and have a reread.
    Thanks, Dawn.

  9. Dawn if you have old photos of Cornwall and about the things that went on back then I sure would love to see that and read on it. Now if I can get my old brain to work now the old post office was the site of an orphanage at one time. Am I correct or misinformed. I used to hear a few stories from mom and dad which was a long time ago and I myself am getting old. LOL LOL.

  10. Jules: There are lots of photos of historic Cornwall on the Internet and also on line at the Cornwall Community Museum web site.

  11. Thanks Dawn I will look that up. I was wondering if there were any around so I will do just that. Thanks again.

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