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FRENCH CONNECTION: Remembering George Keener, anthem adjusts

George Keener was a very special person
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George Keener (right) passed away Nov. 30, 2022. He had contributed $1,500 to the mural seen behind him at the Cariboo Friendship Centre. (Rebecca Dyok photo)

On Sunday, June 11, a headstone raising ceremony will be held at the Soda Creek cemetery for the late George Keener. George died in November, 2020, at the age of 88. There will be a gathering following the ceremony at the Xat’sull Heritage Village.

I’m sorry I have to miss it. George was a very special person, kind to all and a tireless community worker. He was always there for anyone who needed him. He was involved for years with the Cariboo Friendship Centre and he could often be found in the coffee shop there, surrounded by friends.

My connection with him was mostly to get advice. He had an amazing memory and was a reliable source of information on local history.

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Something new to argue about. When we sing O Canada, will we sing “our home AND native land” or the new suggestion, “our home ON native land.”

One point is missing in this debate. Unless you were born in Canada, and many weren’t, you can’t legitimately say it’s your native land. I don’t have strong feelings either way, “on” instead of “and” won’t make me any less Canadian. Besides, most of the current lyrics are very different from the original and we all survived.

Question. How often do any of us actually have the opportunity to sing O Canada? Do we even remember the words? Incidentally, it’s our Canadian National anthem. God Save the King is our “Royal” anthem.

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Weather people are predicting a hot summer and wildfires. Others are predicting gazillions of mosquitoes. I thought mosquitoes didn’t like heat. The fisherman in my family was at a nearby lake over the weekend and reported there were plenty of the little pests bothering campers. Aren’t excessive heat and wildfires enough without mosquitoes?

SMART 55: Fond memories shared among friends

READ MORE: Longtime Cariboo Friendship Centre supporter and ally will be missed



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