A Cel­e­bra­tion of Love and a New Life

Stanstead Journal - - FRONT PAGE - Vic­to­ria Vanier, Stanstead

A spe­cial wed­ding took place, on Sun­day, in Stanstead: a wed­ding to cel­e­brate not only the love of two people, but also to cel­e­brate mov­ing to the sleepy, ru­ral com­mu­nity of Stanstead from the big city of Laval.

“We moved here on May 11th, 2011, so we de­cided to hold our wed­ding on that date be­cause we’re re­ally en­joy­ing liv­ing here in the ‘Three Vil­lages’, in Stanstead,” said Wal­ter E. El­lis, speak­ing for him­self and his soon to be new wife, Suzanne Four­nel, in an in­ter­view with the

Stanstead Jour­nal last week.

The sec­ond mar­riage for Suzanne and Wal­ter, it was sup­posed to be a “quiet wed­ding” with the ser­vice on the cou­ple’s front porch and the re­cep­tion at the Beebe Curl­ing Club, but with six chil­dren and thir­teen grand­chil­dren be­tween them, that idea didn’t last long. “We’re now up to seventy-four guests!” said Wal­ter.

The cou­ple, who are both mem­bers of the

Sacre Coeur Choir, in Stanstead, ac­tu­ally met in the ninety-five per­son choir of St. Syl­vain Par­ish, back in Laval. “I got into the choir af­ter los­ing my wife in April of 2008. Suzanne was also in the choir and she had just lost her hus­band in March. We lived to­gether in Laval for two years be­fore de­cid­ing to move to the coun­try,” ex­plained Mr. El­lis.

“First, we looked on the in­ter­net and found a house in Saint Hermenegilde but it was on a steep road so we didn’t buy it. A friend of ours had bought a home in Stanstead so we looked at Stanstead homes in a cat­a­logue. When we came to see this house, we fell in love with it,” ex­plained Suzanne, a re­tired de­signer of draperies and blinds.

“Af­ter I re­tired in 2000, I wanted to move to the coun­try,” said Wal­ter who worked as a rep­re­sen­ta­tive in the elec­tri­cal mar­ket. “I knew this area a lit­tle bit be­cause I’d played golf at Duf­ferin Heights and at Or­ford.”

Once they’d made the de­ci­sion to ‘head for the hills’, their chil­dren were a lit­tle con­cerned. “The kids thought there would be no hos­pi­tals in the area but we’re only twenty min­utes from the Ma­gog hospi­tal and forty-five min­utes from the CHUS. We even found a fam­ily doc­tor here!” com­mented Mr. El­lis.

In just two years, Suzanne and Wal­ter have found their ‘niche’ here in Stanstead. “In win­ter we can go snow­shoe­ing or cross coun­try ski­ing just out­side our door on the bi­cy­cle path. We go bik­ing on it, too. And I re­ally ap­pre­ci­ate all the bilin­gual people in town; I’ve had a chance to re­new with the English lan­guage. We also go bowl­ing, go to the Club D’Age D’Or din­ners, and we of­ten go to the United States and have lunch at the East­side. It’s nice to dis­cover an area and if you want to do things, there’s al­ways some­thing to do. We just fin­ished a ses­sion, this morn­ing, of col­lage-mak­ing at the Old Post Of­fice, in Rock Is­land,” said Wal­ter, re­fer­ring to the Stanstead Cul­tural Cen­tre the way most long-term res­i­dents do.

“It’s nice and quiet on our street, there are even deer that come and eat our trees. And we re­ally like the people here; they have been very wel­com­ing,” com­mented Suzanne. “If we could just get our street fixed, then we’d re­ally be happy, and so would all our neigh­bours on Western. That would make a nice wed­ding gift!” joked Mr. El­lis, half-se­ri­ously.

“Do you miss the city?” I asked. “No, we go seven or eight times a year and we’re al­ways happy to come back here; I drove in a lot of traf­fic with my work all my life. I tell Suzanne that if I ever get to the bot­tom of Pas­sen­ger Street and have to wait more than three cars be­fore I can pull out onto Rail­road, then we’re sell­ing the house!”

Photo Vic­to­ria Vanier

New Stanstead res­i­dents Suzanne Four­nel and Wal­ter E. El­lis ex­changed vows on their front porch, last Sun­day, in front of over seventy rel­a­tives and friends.

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