BY GEORGE MACVICAR
The Southern Gazette
Morgan Thomas Pardy has dedicated the last 37 years of his life to Lionism. All of it based out of his hometown of Garnish.
He is a Charter member of the tiny Garnish Lions Club – one of three still serving with the club. The others are Lions Enos May and Bert Cluett.
The Garnish Club currently has 14 members and has only been able to boast a membership at any given time of no more than approximately 20.
Lion Morgan joined his fellow members Nov. 25 for the club’s 37th Charter Anniversary celebrations, however this year he attended as District Governor for District N4 – eastern Newfoundland.
He quipped the hardest speech as a District Governor, as past DGs told him, would be in his home club. The DG is expected to visit all 53 clubs in the district during his year in office.
Lion Morgan has adapted the Lions International president’s theme of ‘We Believe’ for his own district theme of ‘Kindness in Motion’, noting “Lions together look to help.”
Another international goal is environmentally related with an objective to plant one million trees. By July, that goal had already been surpassed with 2.5 million plantings – the Lions’ year begins July 1.
Lion Morgan has asked each of his 53 clubs to plant three trees during his year and to extend that by getting schools and students involved.
He also urged Lions to gear some of their projects to help seniors.
He explained “The seniors of today were the backbone of our communities yesterday.”
He indicated from the smallest to the largest Lions Clubs all Lions are involved in their communities living up to their motto “We Serve!”
The district governor referred to projects in his own community with Lions a major part of such events as the annual Bakeapple Festival and Santa Claus parade; all eight Burin Peninsula Lions Clubs have committed $250,000 for local hospital operating room equipment; Lions Club International Foundation provided $10,000 to assist victims of last year’s Hurricane Igor and established a disaster fund for such incidents; supported the provincial Lion Max Simms Memorial Camp for the Handicap, the Lions Foundation of Canada operating the Canada Guide Dog School for visual/hearing impaired individuals and now those suffering seizures as well as the Lions Sight First program for the visually impaired worldwide.
Lion Morgan was pleased to present one of his fellow Garnish Lions – Lion June Petten – with the ‘Rookie of the Year’ for Lions Multiple District, encompassing the Atlantic Provinces and part of the State of Maine.
Lions Foundation of Canada ‘Life Memberships’ were presented to Lions Lynn Grandy, Robyn Teal and Harold Shoppe.
King Lion Bruce Grandy reviewed the 2010-11 year for past president Lion Tim Walters calling it “an excellent year, with the club meeting all it commitments and succeeding by helping people throughout the community.
“We could easily give ourselves a pat on the back as we were on the go everyday.”
Lion Bruce was particularly proud of the club’s ability to sponsor two trust funds in recent years for individuals in need in their community. He recalled his own grandson benefitted from a Lions Trust Fund 11 years ago.
“We’re small in number, and may be getting older, but with 13-14 members we do our best and stand behind our motto ‘We Serve’.”
A highlight of the Charter Night celebrations was the award of the club’s ‘Deceased Lions Scholarship’ in memory of former Lions Wilbert Keeping and Steve Grandy. Meghan Cluett of Frenchman’s Cove was selected as this year’s winner of the $150 award.
Fellow Lions from four other clubs – Grand Bank, Marystown, Fortune and Terrenceville – joined the Garnish Club for its annual Charter Night as did Garnish Coun. Michael Geraghty and Frenchman’s Cove Mayor Donna Cluett.