Joyce awaits another world call to compete!

Joyce Gosselin, Miss Fort Frances, is one person happy for snowfall as she practises regularly for another run at the Special Olympics, where she was world champion in Japan earlier this year!
Joyce, looking fit and half her age, has not yet been invited. Merely being the reigning titleist does not necessarily bring a repeat invitation, but she is hopeful and intends to be ready for that call!
Living across the hall from her and sometimes given a sample of her baking, I would suggest she also could compete with her pastries—if there was any such an event!
Sports at her level require full mental concentration as well as much preparation, so whenever there is opportunity, you may see Joyce striding or running around the edge of nearby trees.
Snowshoe training requires proficiency in several events and thorough training. In summertime, she works at lawnmowing in case she gets another chance to become athlete of the year here and possibly overseas.
She has help from local coaches, Connie Woods and Gaby Hanzuk, while awaiting calls to compete in the 100m and 200m distances—regionally at first, then provincially and nationally before going into the world races.
She hopes to hear about her selection to compete again soon.
The world committee also invites skiers and skaters and others to begin their winter sports skills, and Joyce believes she has another chance to go overseas. But until that call comes, there is no certainty.
In the meantime, she keeps practising to be ready!
Eight men and eight women from Canada will receive invitations in February. District competitions begin at Kenora. The finals may be set for China later this winter. Besides the individual racing, there also will be relay racing again.
Joyce reports being treated “like royalty” this year in Japan. She was taken to visit classrooms, where children are impressed by such athletes.
• • •
With the search for gold picking up in this area, particularly around Mine Centre, I talked to a pair of young drillers from Timmins, one of Ontario’s foremost gold mining areas.
Appearing no older than the high school students always in McDonald’s at noontime, those newcomers said they were employed by an eastern company they had joined back home.
While not discussing their prospects, I gathered they probably may be working near the site that, not many years ago, caused three new banks to move into Fort Frances!.
The Royal Bank, the Imperial (which later joined the Bank of Commerce), and also the Bank of Nova Scotia that moved away soon no doubt were attracted to the district expecting an Emo mine to be established.
The Emo site in those days was on the north side of the highway and slightly east of the village.
One of the new bank managers to arrive here for a short time had rented a former Safeway store, set up a card table and, without removing his hat and overcoat, appeared ready for business! But with no heat yet in the empty store, he may have been quickly discouraged because, like now, it was wintertime.
• • •
In connection with the mining excitement, our community received a visit from a former resident who was selling shares in a mining company—but with no takers after inviting local businessmen to a meeting in the Rainy Lake Hotel.
His name was Archie Stethem, son of a former owner of old Wells Hardware here.
I’ve not heard of him since and he soon returned to Winnipeg, but this was an example of the excitement that can be generated around prospects of new gold mines.
• • •
With Jan. 23 having been set for the federal election, that also is believed to be, on average, the coldest day of the year! My dad used to say “When the smoke goes straight up, that’s really cold”!
• • •
Frank DeBenedet here says his left foot was re-attached using his own blood vessels and nerves—and he walks quite well today. The bad scar on his lower ankle might have been much worse!
• • •
Don’t worry about the McQuakers because Harold, who breezed into our restaurant last week, has his regular cheerful personality and his brother, Carson, now 84, is also just fine “and still singing,” Harold reports.
This brings up some wonderful times at the annual beef cattle sale at Stratton, where Carson was auctioneer.
• • •
Al Lowe and family were out at La Place Rendez-Vous Sunday evening. He is the retired high school teacher who still writes a nature column for the Times.
• • •
All Carrier disagrees with me over politics when I say the Liberals always have been my choice, especially since they have helped former servicemen and war veterans.
Al said his father died of war wounds without any government help.
I believe Mr. Carrier held a government position as a jailer, but his allegiance was probably to the Conservative provincial government that hired him.
• • •
Pay attention to that sign at Rainycrest Home for the Aged which demands “No roller skating or skateboarding!” Those seniors are getting more frisky right along!
• • •
Virgil Dahl, the new assistant manager of Safeway, is handling Meals on Wheels very “safely” being fully experienced with groceries!
You see, I’m still loyal to Safeway, where I worked part-time as a high schooler here.
I get nostalgic at this time of year and wonder about my school chums, Howard Neely, and Gordon Watt, who also were at that store during the same pre-war period!

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