A month’s worth of problems with — and on — the ice
A massive ice jam flooded a community in Akwesasne, the buildup on the St. Regis River forcing the St. Regis Tribal Council to issue a precautionary evacuation order.
A state of emergency was in place for several days, and the St. Regis Mohawk Tribal Council said 25 households had been impacted – most in the Hogansburg area – and over 75 residents displaced.
The flooding closed numerous streets and roads near Hogansburg, including Church Street, where St. Regis Mohawk School is located.
Being February, it was also snowy in the Seaway Valley.
That’s not a news flash, but sometimes it’s not an easy reality to deal with, and while the Feb. 8 blizzard wasn’t as severe as the one on Jan. 13 – when 25 centimetres of snow fell in Cornwall and drifts were as high as 45 centimetres – the storm did result in numerous cancellations, including of course school buses, and a Science and Nature on Tap speaker series event held by the River Institute.
It was also political season, even though the provincial election was still several months away. There was star power in St. Andrews West, a visit on Feb. 9 from Ontario PC leadership candidate Caroline Mulroney, her appearance drawing about 100 party members and supporters.
At Quinn’s Inn, Mulroney told the gathering she decided to become a candidate because “I know I’m the only (candidate) who can beat Kathleen Wynne.”
That turned out to be incorrect, of course. It was Doug Ford who ultimately won the leadership, and who defeated Wynne in the June 7 election.
Late in February, the Cornwall and Area Chamber of Commerce Business Excellence and Citizen of the Year Awards were held, and it would be a special occasion for a surprised Rachelle Lamond at the Nav Centre.
The retired educator and tireless volunteer was named Cornwall’s Citizen of the Year, and Lamond told the big gathering that “it’s very heartwarming, it’s overwhelming to see such a big, supportive crowd.”
In sports, the Winter Olympic Games were getting underway in Pyeongchang, South Korea, and Cornwall’s Michelle Rozon had her travel itinerary well-planned.
The 23-year-old had already worked at the Summer Games in Rio in 2016, and now she’d have the same position with CBC RadioCanada for the winter version, working with the athletic co-ordination team.
“I’m super excited,” said Rozon, a former student at both Holy Trinity and L’Heritage high schools. “The Olympic experience is nothing short of phenomenal. . . the Winter Olympics will be an interesting experience, (with) different sports to see.”
Something local high school basketball observers didn’t expect to see: the Tagwi Warriors upsetting the perennial powerhouse St. Lawrence Saints in the SD&G senior boys A championship game, 74-65.
The Saints were undefeated in tri-county play the last two years, and were EOSSAA champs the last three years.
“We knew we had a chance, we thought that if we played well we’d be in it for sure,” said Warriors coach Lori McDonald. (But) yeah, I think it’s a pretty big (upset).”
Some local hockey fans were upset – the Cornwall Nationals of the Federal Hockey League announced they had ceased operations, effective immediately.
“Unfortunately, due to our financial situation we can no longer continue,” team owner/president Rodney Rivette said in a news release issued by the team. “This is a really sad day for hockey in Cornwall.”