Richard Jeysman

Where are you now?  

Mr. Richard Jeysman started high school at York Memorial in 1967. He has a great reputation in excelling in his academics and in the athletics department. He graduated at York Memorial in 1972 with a tremendous amount of achievements. He then continued to pursue his passion for football, gymnastics and science at the University of Toronto. There he received his bachelor’s degree in science majoring in physiology. He also graduated from Ryerson University and York University for further education in business. There he received his business certificate in marketing and executive studies in Business Administration.  

During his time at York Memorial he participated in over ten sports including basketball, cross country, football, swimming, track/field, among others. One of his proudest achievements was in gymnastics where he could be found competing for York Memorial across Ontario but also doing acrobatics for the yearly school play or celebrating a football touchdown by doing a back flip in the end zone. His athletic successes at York Memorial would, today fill a room with awards that make him one of the very best athletes that York Memorial has ever produced.

Photo of Mr. Richard Jeysman    One of his highlights of playing sports at York Memorial was at the 1972 University of Toronto All-Star game in which he was a standout contributor. This led him to the University of Toronto, in physiology, where he stood out as an excellent defensive player, as well as student. His football performance and his team rose to national prominence playing in the College Bowl Championship which they lost by a narrow decision in front of 26,000 people at the CNE stadium. His football acumen at the University of Toronto caught the eye of the Hamilton Tiger Cats who selected him in the 7th round of the Canadian Football League Draft. His career in the CFL was short lived but his time in sports at York Memorial and moving forward to its culmination in the CFL taught him to “seize the opportunity and never settle”. Mr. Jeysman continued using this motto deep into his profession career.  

By luck, perseverance, intelligence, and drive, Mr. Jeysman altered the world for the better after he left the University of Toronto. He joined Sterling Drugs Ltd. where he enjoyed increasing responsibilities in sales and marketing . After serving time as a Director of Marketing, he then seize at the opportunity to build a new company in Canada. He started up the Canadian subsidiary of Ferring Pharmaceuticals from a newly start pharmaceutical business branch from Sweden into a large hundred million dollar product company ranked in the top fifty companies in Canada. As President of Ferring, he led the introduction of a number of important new medication that treat serious conditions across the therapeutic areas of Gastroenterology, Pediatrics, Urology, Obstetrics and Infertility. 
Mr. Jeysman is particularly proud of the development of a drug that aids in the post birth health of mothers. Carbetocin, a long acting analogue of oxytocin is a medicine that reduces the excessive loss of blood that occurs with percentage of women undergoing C- section and vaginal delivery of a child. Scientifically it is defined as postpartum hemorrhage. This drug is now marketed in 35 countries providing therapeutic benefit to mothers of the world who do not reside in high economic areas and where medical services are hard to come by. 
Mr. Jeysman’s drive, and confidence to take on such a challenging task leads back to his time at York Memorial where he remembers teachers like Ms. Parsons, Ms. Furlotte or Mr. Tan always taking the time for a young student who never stopped asking “why?” and saw the potential in a young student who successfully balanced himself between a life in athletics and science. 
Richard Jeysman retired in 2012. However, he is still quite active in his profession. He is a guest lecturer, mentor and an advisor to start-up companies who seek him out for his vast experience and abilities. He also serves on the Board of Directors of the Canadian Liver Foundation heading up the government advocacy committee. Despite his age, he is a competitive Master swimmer with national ranking, participates in skiing and even heli-skiing on occasion. Overall, he is enjoying his retirement inspiring those who have the honour to interview him, and he is now a proud grandfather to a newly born baby girl—Madison.

Ronald E. Winter

Extraordinary does not even begin to describe this York Memorial Alumnus’ career. Ronald E. Winter graduated from the University of Toronto in 1949 with a Bachelor of Applied Science degree and started up his own engineering firm just six years later in 1955. Ron not only went on to build the largest shopping centre in the province, he built an entire city.

Ironically Ron came into his profession much by accident. During most of his childhood life he thought he would become a doctor, just like his father. After a real life experience witnessing human damage, Ron discovered that the decision to become a doctor was not his own but rather his father’s.When Ron went to tell his father that he no longer wanted to become a doctor his father asked what Ron would rather become, Ron blurted out: engineer. “The only other occupation [he] knew”.

The roots of a man can often speak volumes about his personality; Ron’s roots were no exception. Ron’s hardworking personality can be dated back to his childhood. Ron was born in Toronto in 1926. Growing up in the Roseland area of Mount Dennis during the Depression, Ron’s parents made sure that he never had idle hands. Whether he was helping his loving mother garden or working summer jobs, Ron was always working. Ron’s father’s perseverance was due to the way his Scottish mother raised him. Ron credits his father for shaping his personality; diligence runs in the family apparently.

Ron started high school in 1939 and spent his five years at YMCI; Ron graduated in 1945 and started at the University of Toronto in 1946 where he pursued his dream of becoming an engineer that would one day “build a city west of Toronto”. Ron graduated UofT in 1949 with a Bachelor of Applied Science and this marked the start of his professional career as a Civil Engineer. Ron was taken in by R. K. Kilborn Associates promptly after graduating university. After building his knowledge and honing his skills Ron left Kilborn and started his own company in 1955. One of his first projects is one that many may recognize, the Chris TonksSkating Arena. Ron and his company designed a roof above the rink to keep the sun from melting the ice. Upon completing the roof the Township of York was so impressed that they hired Ron again to build walls around the rink, with this the arena was complete. R.E Winter & Associates’ reputation spread. 

Numerous projects and travels later, Ron came into contact with the man who would give Ron the opportunity to make his dream a reality; this man was Bruce McLaughlin. Bruce hired Ron and his company to design the city of Mississauga in 1959. Within 10 years of graduating from university, this extraordinary man designed an entire city as well as Square One Shopping Centre. His perseverance through the years paid off and he was able to accomplish his dream.

Ron has not only built an entire city from the ground up but he has built lasting relationships throughout his life that have helped him climb ranks and become the man he is today. It is easy to think of Ron just as a person who designed the city of Mississauga or the largest shopping centre in the province. But a man is not simply defined by his accomplishments in life, but also by the relationships and connections he builds with the people around him. The list of friends and connections Ron has developed throughout his career is a long one but one relationship shines brighter than the rest; the relationship he had with his wife. Ron met Jenny Carton in April of 1951 and married her the following year. On the day of the interview the first thing Ron brought in was a scrapbook filled to the brim with photographs of him and his wife. This scrapbook stands as a testament to the loving relationship he had with his wife. The first photos he shared with us the day we met him were of his wife and family;only after that scrapbook did he show us pictures of the buildings he designed. Ron might have very well built more meaningful bridges to people’s hearts than he did actual bridges in his career.

Ron currently lives in North York with his daughter. His son has followed in his footsteps and has become an engineer. Ron currently works at his local church, his hard working, diligent spirit is still alive and strong. Mississauga stands as a monument to Ron’s hard work and determination. After interviewing this man I have learned so much in the way of living life to its full potential. Ron personally credits his success to the book “How to Win Friends & Influence People” by Dale Carnegie. Sadly, the book does not teach you how to build a city; it does tell you how to build meaningful relationships. Ron says that everyone would benefit from reading such an outstanding book.I personally have a copy of the book lying on my desk and maybe, just maybe,with it I’ll build my own city.

Interview and article by Eric Nguyen; photographs by NithyaSrithiran


Roderick Alexander Macdonald, O.C., FRSC

Ronald E. WinterProfessor Roderick Alexander Macdonald is F.R. Scott Professor of Constitutional and Public Law at McGill University and a member of the Law Societies of both Ontario and Quebec. Professor Macdonald holds a B.A. from York University (1969), an LL.B. from Osgoode Hall Law School (1972), an LL.L. from the Civil Law Faculty, University of Ottawa (1974) and an LL.M. from the University of Toronto (1975). He received an honorary doctorate from the University of Montreal (2010) and from Osgoode Hall Law School (2011). 

He commenced his career as an Assistant Professor at the University of Windsor in 1975, where he served notably as Co-Director of the Community Law Programme (1977-79) and where he commenced the teaching of the common law in French (1977). In 1979 he joined the Faculty of Law at McGill, where he served as Associate Dean (Academic) (1981-1983) and Dean (1984-1989). He teaches and publishes in the areas of civil law, commercial law, administrative law, constitutional law, jurisprudence and access to justice. Since 1975 he has published more than 200 books, essay collections, articles, reports and study papers.  

Following his Deanship at McGill, he chaired a Task Force on Access to Justice of the Ministère de la justice du Québec (1989-91). He served as a consultant to the Royal Commission on Aboriginal Peoples, to the Ontario Civil Justice Review and to the Federal Department of Justice on the interaction of federal law and the Civil Code of Québec. From 1989 to 1995 he was Director of the Law in Society Programme of the Canadian Institute for Advanced Research, and from 1997 to 2000, he was the founding President of the Law Commission of Canada, the federal law reform agency. 

Between 2002 and 2004 he was a consultant to the World Bank in Ukraine and drafted that country's current law on secured transactions. In 2003 and 2004 he was a consultant on civil judgement execution with the CIDA-sponsored Legal Reform Project in the Republic of Vietnam. Since 2002 he has been a member of the Canadian delegation to Working Group VI (Secured Transactions) of United Nations Commission on International Trade Law and was on the team that drafted the Legislative Guide to Secured Transactions Law (2009). In 2007-2008 he chaired a Task Force for the Ministère de la justice du Québec that produced a Report on Anti-Slapp Legislation, the recommendations of which were enacted into the Quebec Code of Civil Procedure. In November 2011 he was named one of three Commissioners on the Commission of Inquiry into Corruption in the Construction Industry in Quebec (the Charbonneau Commission).  

Professor Macdonald has lectured widely across Canada, the United States, Australia, Chile, England, France, Germany, Italy and Spain, and has held visiting positions at Osgoode Hall Law School, the University of Toronto, the University of British Columbia, the Australian National University, the Université Blaise Pascal in Clermont-Ferrand and the Université Paul Cézanne in Aix-Marseilles. 

In 1996 he was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society of Canada, and in 2004 he was named a Fellow of the Pierre Elliot Trudeau Foundation. In April 2007, Professor Macdonald was awarded a Killam Prize, Canada's most distinguished annual award for outstanding career achievement in research in the humanities and social sciences. In September 2007, he was honoured with the University of Ottawa Civil Law Faculty’s Ordre du mérite and in November 2007 was awarded the Sir William Dawson Medal for the Social Sciences by the Royal Society of Canada. In 2009 he made history when he became the 111th President of the Royal Society of Canada, making him the first law professor to hold the post. He was awarded the Ramon Hnatyshyn Medal by the Canadian Bar Association in 2010. He received the McGill University Lifetime Achievement Award for Leadership in Learning in 2011, the Paul-André Crépeau Award for Excellence in Comparative Law Scholarship by the Canadian Bar Association, Quebec Branch in 2012 and the John W. Durnford Prize for Teaching Excellence by the Faculty of Law, McGill University in 2012.  

Professor Macdonald was inducted as an Officer of the Order of Canada in 2012 and received one of the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Medals in 2013. On November 16, 2012 at an event at the Ottawa Convention Centre to mark the 130th anniversary of Royal Society of Canada (RSC), Governor General David Johnston announced the creation of a new library at Walter House, the RSC’s new headquarters in Ottawa. “I am equally delighted to announce that this new reading room, with the support and encouragement of his many friends, colleagues and loved ones, is to be named in honour of Rod Macdonald,” he added.  Former McGill Law Professor Macdonald’s leadership of the RSC was transformative, resulting in a greatly strengthened National Academy, as well as in the acquisition of Walter House, the first permanent home in the 130-year history of the RSC.  

In June of 2014 Professor Macdonald will be awarded the McGill University Gold Medal for Career Research Achievement.  

Roderick Macdonald – 1962-63 10A
Class with Miss Myrtle Adams at front steps of YMCI 


Gerrit De Boer

De Boer Gerrit

Gerrit De Boer was born in Holland and moved to Canada in 1953. This iconic man has built not only Idomo Furniture International, but also lasting relationships around the world and television commercials we will never forget. He returned to Memo this spring to tour the school and share memories.

Gary, as he called himself throughout his school days, grew up very near to York Memorial, on Greenbrook Drive off Keele St. Who would have guessed that the boy who played with cows across the street from his house would become such a well known man world-wide? Mr. De Boer came to York Memorial in 1965 for grade 13, and graduated this same year. He went on to the University of Manitoba, receiving his Bachelor of Environmental Studies. When asked about his best memory, De Boer jokingly responds with, “You mean the girls I dated?” After a laugh, he continues to tell us about the Latin course that used to be offered in room 208, taught by Mr. Kennedy, who was De Boer’s favourite teacher. While he admits that his marks may not have been the greatest in Latin, it was his favourite subject. When De Boer received a concussion from an encounter with a pile of bricks, Mr. Kennedy allowed him to take his final exam at a later date. But this good deed did not go unrewarded. Later in life the two men met up by chance on a plane, and Mr. De Boer gave Mr. Kennedy his seat and took the teacher’s much less comfortable place in the back of the plane! Mr. De Boer’s interest in architecture shone through as we walked throughout the building and he commented on not only the stained glass windows, but also the wooden inlay to the left and right of the stage and the indented wall along the main hallway with a fire hose placed above a water fountain. Things the students of today and of years past may never have noticed.

Mr De Boer’s first job was in his own father’s furniture store, De Boer’s Furniture. De Boer worked on the sales floor of the store, which was originally located on Weston Road. Later, De Boer opened up his own company, Idomo Furniture International. Known for its less expensive furniture of good quality, the company has been operating for 40 years. The success of the company is certainly due to De Boer’s emphasis on his responsibility to his customers, his employees and his business. He values fair treatment in all three of these areas. As well as this, De Boer speaks Dutch, Latin, German and French, which greatly helped him on his travels and with his contacts. “The more you speak in somebody’s language for business, the more they appreciate it.” He also believes that his business deserved to come first. But does a businessman as busy as Mr. De Boer really remember his furniture? It turns out the answer is yes. He specifically remembers his invitation to Brazil. Instead of attending official event after official event as was expected, De Boer went ‘shopping’ and came home with twelve containers of leather furniture, and a host of new business contacts he had met at the furniture shows he attended instead. This whole venture occurred when he was just twenty five years of age.

Mr. De Boer has spent most of his business life travelling around the world to find furniture. In his first year of business he went to thirty different countries. Throughout the years De Boer’s typical business trip meant going to nine or twelve cities in sixteen days to attend furniture shows, with thirty five or forty hours of travel before he reached a hotel. However, De Boer was certainly capable of combining business with pleasure. Despite visiting Paris as often as eighty times a year, De Boer still finds it stimulating, especially the architecture of the Musée Brandi and the Musée D’Orsey – an old railroad which is now a museum. De Boer also enjoys Bangkok, where he stayed in a hotel along the river and where some of his best commercials were filmed. One shot in which De Boer was sitting bareback on an elephant was made more difficult when the elephant discovered it was free to roam and chose to stroll off camera, with De Boer still on-board. In another commercial shot, the local talent De Boer always uses to film for him decided that they should have a number of takes before final shooting, while De Boer stood nervously with a 10 foot python around his neck – a python that was growing impatient as well. Despite his adventures, De Boer says he is now glad to be done travelling, as he can now spend more time with his wife and twenty seven year old daughter.

De Boer Gerrit

Mr. De Boer shared many other interests with us throughout the tour. While he appreciates politics and would love to run, he views party leaders as dictators, so instead chooses to stay involved through social actions. Black and white photography is another interest, said to “show who you are, there is no colour arguing with you.” Mr. De Boer is also a mentor – he has participated in several micro lending projects in which he helped to fund entrepreneurs abroad so they could start small businesses and has helped small communities by bringing wood to small villages to build houses. But perhaps one of his biggest interests is social responsibility; how you mould yourself to help society. “My strength is my diversity, me weakness is my diversity,” he says, then proceeds to ask, “Why do you study?” This question makes one truly consider the implications of why we study – is it because we are told to, or because we wish to be the greatest we can be? With all these great achievements under his belt, it is no wonder the businessman is ready to retire. However, “the company is my image,” he comments as he tells me that he will not be selling the company, but simply letting it go. When Mr. De Boer was just fourteen years old, he had three life goals. One, to build a pipe organ; De Boer is currently building an organ of four hundred pipes – a project that will take ten years. Two, to build his own house; a solar house constructed by him now stands in the woods. And three, to go to the moon. As the interview comes to a close I realize just how much this man has seen. While I may never see or learn as much as he has, I’m privileged to have received just a token of what he knows. While Mr. De Boer has not yet reached the moon, I’d be shocked if he didn’t make it there someday.

De Boer Gerrit

David Devall


Dave Devall, CTV meteorologist and a York Memorial Alumnus started his career in 1956 with his first job in broadcasting as an audio operator. Who would have guessed that fifty-two years later I would be joining him while he recollected his years at York Memorial.

Graduating in the year 1951, Dave Devall was never a kid who enjoyed learning. He admits to being a procrastinator, and recalls his academic experience at York Memorial as being “okay.” Playing as a half back on the school’s football team, Dave Devall remembers a few other activities in which he participated, including the boy’s hockey team, Student Council and numerous clubs at school, but claims that his years could have been better if he was a bit more involved. Nevertheless, every time Dave Devall represented Memo, he felt a sense of pride wearing gold and red and being called a Mustang, a term born while Dave Devall attended York Memorial and still used today.

Despite his “okay” memories of high school, his eyes shine when he remembers Ms. Bennet, his English teacher who became an inspiration to him as the first teacher to introduce him to public speaking. A requirement of senior English class was oral composition, and while most students would rather do anything but make a speech, Dave discovered he loved to stand up and talk to people. He earned top marks in the school and went on to compete in regional and provincial competitions successfully. His trophy now proudly sits beside one of his father’s on their home mantle, and Dave’s career of “standing up and talking to people” is legendary.

Dave Devall grew up in the York Township Area, now currently known as the York South Weston Riding. His family was not rich, but they were not poor either. He had a part-time job at Loblaws and unbelievably earned the highest pay as a part time student making $1.65 at the time!




Dave Devall began his career in the Royal Canadian Air Force from York Memorial. He remembers clearly the day when a Flying Officer came and spoke to all the students on Career Day. With a total cost of $33,000 to train a pilot at the time (now approximately $1.5 million), Dave Devall joined the reserve. He became part of the 400, 411 and 2400 Squadrons in Downsview and got his Air Force papers there. Today Dave Devall still holds his pilot’s license and just recently was named Honorary Colonel with 436 Transport Squadron in Trenton, a huge honour of which he is justifiably proud. Occasionally he can be seen forecasting the weather in full air force uniform when he has been working during the day.

As I sit beside Mr. Devall and listen to his past, I see his eyes light up and twinkle as he recalls his memories in the Air Force. These, he believes, were his finest moments where he was taught morals, rules, and most important, discipline. If you have ever watched the news when Dave Devall broadcasts, then you are probably familiar with his special skill of being able to write backwards with both hands. This was another thing that the Air Force taught him. Early in his career, he was the fellow responsible for transferring information as it arrived to the duty controller, so he had the job of writing the status of the various squadrons in another room. The transfer consisted of writing all the information on the glass wall that separated the two- so the gentleman doing the writing had to do it backwards so the officers could read it.


While in the Royal Canadian Air Force, Dave Devall also juggled his education at Ryerson University. He enjoyed every aspect of broadcasting and this is why he enrolled in the Radio and Television Course. While studying at Ryerson, Dave Devall started looking for a part-time job. It was Kent Thompson who offered him his first job in television and sent him to Peterborough where he auditioned. With his unique talents, and his good looking charm, (thanks to a couple of years of modeling), Dave Devall got a job and started that same Monday. Everything seemed to be going great. He landed his dream job, was able to balance work and school into a manageable schedule and was still able to D.J. the dances at Casa Loma every Saturday night.

While working in Peterborough, Dave Devall managed a schedule where he could study and write his exams at school. Traveling back and forth from school to work seemed like a good plan, but Ryerson did not approve, indicating it would set a bad example to other students. They asked him to quit his job and it was then that Dave Devall realized that broadcasting was his passion. He packed his belongings from Ryerson, and with only a couple months before he would finish the semester and graduate, he quit school. This was his biggest disappointment; not being able to finish an important thing he had set out to do.

When he auditioned for CTV, over 2,000 other people were auditioning for the same position. Dave Devall was not aware of this and with the security of having his job in Peterborough and not knowing how much competition he had, made it easier. In 1961 Dave Devall was asked to join CTV as a broadcaster. The rest is history.


Coming close to retirement, Dave Devall would like to slowly phase out of the business, but it is not going to be easy with his great love for broadcasting, and a strong relationship with all the six o’clock team. Dave Devall would like to start enjoying the fruits of his labour. He does not exactly know what he would like to do when he is retired, but small tasks such as gardening, planting, even building a workbench are things he looks forward to, and motivational speaking is in the planning stages. He believes the active and interesting mind must be exercised and tested, so he is not completely ready for retirement anytime soon.

Concluding the interview, I asked Dave Devall what advice he gives to students who would like to enter the industry. He encourages students to keep an open mind and pursue many dreams, since “life has a way of taking you along the path that it wants you to go, not necessarily the path you want to follow.” Thanks Dave, and all the best.

Christine Marshall

Where Were You?
Christine Marshall

We drive out of Toronto on an icy March morning to interview Christine Marshall. The drive is calm and easy. We begin to see drifts of snow alongside the highway as we drive farther out of the city: a message of March in the country that will greet us at Christine's gallery and home in Bala, Ontario. I spend the drive up worrying about meeting Christine - whose reputation as a painter of nature is both extensive and well-deserved - especially as I know so little about painting. Yet when we arrive, the woman who comes out of her house to greet us is kind, and thoughtful: quickly hustling us inside her studio to greet us out of the cold. We make quick introductions and Christine's husband Frank comes to graciously introduce himself and offer us refreshments before heading out on his morning's errands and we begin the interview.

It wasn't until Christine's high school days that she ever seriously considered any kind of artistic career. From the first time they met, it must have been obvious to Miss Murphy, York Memorial's art teacher, that Christine held great promise. Likewise, when Christine began high school at York Memorial, she was immediately drawn to this art teacher, and together the two developed a sort of apprenticeship for Christine. Christine would help set up before art class, and was often relied upon to aid others. There were new challenges issued by Miss Murphy - among them, pottery, and art history lessons - which led Christine to incorporate new perspectives and artistic elements in her work, and led to her new interest in art and painting.

York Memorial also gave Christine the chance to meet her first husband, Greig Marshall. Greig was what Christine describes as an "extremely bright and energetic young man" who would later become the reason her artistic career took off. Although they had separate and distinct interests and friends in high school, her encounters with him there set the stage for their mutual decision to become teachers. They married soon after high school, then each went on to complete their education at Toronto Teachers' College.

Christine Marshall

After finishing high school and attaining a Fine Arts degree in university, Christine completed her education in teacher's college, where she became reacquainted with Greig Marshall. Together, they began teaching in Toronto. Christine has several reasons for becoming a teacher - among them the fact that it is particularly difficult for a young artist to make her living from her artwork without commercially commissioned work, deadlines, or contracts - but the most important one is that Christine genuinely loves teaching. Indeed, during the interview, she eagerly discusses the idea of having a group of York Memorial art students up to visit her so she can give them a taste of what the future holds for an artist. Although she claims to have "gotten teaching out of her system," it is clear that she still enjoys engaging and enlightening groups of future artists.

It was while Christine was teaching that she attained an Art Supervisor's Certificate and a Fine Arts Degree at York University in Toronto. For many years, teaching had consumed Christine. She gave all she had to the education of her city's offspring - students from grade school all the way through high school - and their growth into adults. However even as Christine reached the pinnacle of her teaching career, she continued painting on the side, and was often exhausted as a result. Splitting time between two equally consuming, wonderful tasks was grueling, but Christine had no intention of quitting her day job for a career that she was sure could never take off. But one day a neighbour saw one of her earliest mushroom paintings and asked if she would consider selling it. Christine was bemused that someone would wish to buy her artwork, and had no idea of what a fair price for such a piece would be. When she saw the neighbour the next day, she asked if thirty dollars was too much to consider paying for it!

Christine Marshall

Despite her humility - or perhaps because of it - Christine's artistic career took off. She sold one painting after another, exhausting herself physically and mentally until she and her husband took the risk of leaving their teaching positions to pursue and manage Christine's career as an artist. Of course, success came and Christine began to earn commission after commission. With the careful planning and marketing of her now late husband Greig, her career path was set. With each new challenge and subsequent success, Christine's following grew, allowing her the opportunity for travel, mostly within Ontario, but intermittently to places outside the province, and even the country. She traveled to Australia, and Africa, China, and Greece, painting the landscapes and wildernesses she had loved in her childhood. Through the 1980s and '90s the body of work Christine created is impressive both in size and variety of subjects -- from Ontario's birds and wildlife to the majestic animals of the African plains. Her accomplishments brought honours and opportunity. She was named 1994's Ontario Federation of Anglers and Hunters Artist of the Year. She met AJ Casson of the Group of Seven, who later wrote the introduction to a tome published about her life. She attended many events and met numerous other artists and has spent the past 25 years featured at most of the Ontario Resorts as their "Artist in Residence" beginning with her first appearance in Minaki Lodge in 1986. Christine spent a year as Artist-in-Residence at Minaki Lodge, and is still an active member of both the Spring and Fall Art Tours around the Muskoka region of Ontario.

Today however, is a quiet day for Christine. As we wrap up the interview and tour, Christine invites us for a lunch she and Frank have prepared ahead of time. They are gracious hosts: engaging us in conversation, offering more food, and allowing us to enjoy the panorama through the windows of their home in the woods. It is easy to be overwhelmed by Christine's success artistically, and awed by where she is today: married to charming Frank, living in an open, welcoming house, and above all, surrounded by this inspiring nature. There are scenes of waterfalls and birds hung on the walls, while outside, the birds fluttering at the feeders inform us of the impending spring, even though the snow hangs off tree branches and crunches beneath our feet as we wave goodbye. For more information, or to contact Christine, please visit her website at: Christine encourages visits and tours, and would be so happy to see more Memo grads in her studio.

Harry J. Sinden

Harry J. Sinden

September 28, 1972. One of the most memorable dates in Canadian hockey history. Team Canada defeats the Soviet Union in the now legendary "Summit Series", a result that would lead to dramatic changes in the way we viewed and played the game.

While most of us can think back to exactly where we were when Paul Henderson scored "The Goal", one York Memorial alumnus would definitely not have a problem recalling where he stood for the historic moment!

Harry Sinden was behind the Canadian bench as head coach of Team Canada 1972.

And despite his success on that day and his many triumphs with the Boston Bruins, Mr. Sinden had no hesitation in recalling his days at Y.M.C.I. as "the best years of his life"!

Harry grew up in a house on Bicknell Avenue directly across from a park that is now the site of cybridge @ George Harvey C. I.. It was on the outdoor rink in this very park that a young Harry honed his skills, as he did not participate in any form of organized hockey until he was thirteen years old.

The rink was the focal point of the community for young boys who would play on the natural ice until the lights were turned off at 10:00 sharp each night. With only one boarded rink for hockey players, the space was severely limited and would often see as many as five or six games taking place simultaneously on the same pad.

Harry attended Silverthorn Public School as a boy and did well enough to skip a grade, landing him at York Memo as a brash young thirteen year-old in the fall of 1945.

High schools did not compete in hockey at the time, due to the unpredictability of the weather on the natural ice outdoor rinks. In fact, the present site of Keelesdale Park and arena was nothing more than trees and the neighbourhood swimming hole.

It was at this point, however, that Harry began to take hockey a little more serious, playing for the first time in the city wide Toronto Hockey League. While at York Memo, he did participate actively in sports including football, basketball and track. While possessing a lot of heart, Harry admits he was not "the fleetest afoot" and claims to have been lapped in an 880 yard dash in the city finals.

Two staff members in particular stand out in his memory: the Principal during that era, Mr. J.W. Ansley and a favourite teacher was the legendary Doug Barbour. Mr. Barbour was instrumental in the development and support of many of the York Memo athletic programs and later went on to become its Principal.

Outside of sports, there were not a lot of activities to occupy a young man's time. Harry recalls losing on more than one occasion at an illegal black jack game held in the basement of a neighbourhood variety store that also served as the areas unofficial "off track betting parlour". A part time job on Saturdays helping the local Silverwoods milkman was the source of his limited budget at the time.

While at school, Harry maintained a straight "A" average and vividly recalls having to present an oral essay in front of his peers in which he spoke on the "Canadian beaver".

Perhaps his patriotism at the time was an omen of great things to come. After leaving York Memo in 1949 to play junior hockey in Oshawa, Harry eventually moved on to a minor pro career that would see him win a "world championship" in 1958 as a member of the famed Whitby Dunlops.

After his playing days had ended in 1965-66 as a player/coach with the Central Leagues Oklahoma City Bruins, he moved up to coach the NHL's Boston Bruins. With such legendary stars as Bobby Orr and Phil Esposito, he led a young Bruins team to the Stanley Cup in 1969-70.

A member of the Hockey Hall of Fame, the IIHF Hall of Fame, and winner of the prestigious Lester Patrick Award, Harry presently holds the position of Club President with the Bruins.

Residing in nearby Winchester, Mass. with his wife Eleanor, the proud couple are parents to four daughters and numerous grandchildren.

Alan Tonks

Alan Tonks

I graduated from York Memorial in 1965 and after Teacher’s College volunteered to teach in Jamaica with the Canadian University Services Overseas (CUSO). Upon my return from Jamaica, I had an interview with York but because I did not have a university degree, I was not successful in getting a position. I went home very disappointed but got a call from Scarborough who wanted me to show up the next day to interview for a position. They seemed to like my experience in Jamaica because of the influx of Jamaican kids into Scarborough and felt I would be an excellent fit. I started the next day. I stayed with Scarborough taking leaves of absence during my political career. In fact, while I was the Mayor of York, I took courses and graduated with my M.A. and M.Ed because I now had a real interest in taking advanced courses to better prepare me as an educator.

My first experience in politics was to run for Councillor in the City of York against Lloyd Sainsbury a fixture at that time, and a war veteran, who lived in the community for many years. I lost, but it was a learning experience. The next time I ran for municipal election was when Jim Trimbee, who was a Controller in York passed away, and I was elected. Later in my political career I was elected Mayor of the City of York, remained in that position for six years, then became Metropolitan Toronto Chairman, and after nearly ten years in that position, oversaw the transition for the amalgamated city. For two years I then chaired the Greater Toronto Services Board, ultimately running for Member of Parliament, in which position I have served for ten years.

Let me reflect on some memories of Memo. I did not start at YMCI but spent the first couple of years of high school at Upper Canada College. I lived in the area, always wanted to go to Memo and actually hung around with guys who went to the school so when I decided to make the switch, it seemed a natural transition. However, it was not so easy. My first day at the school, I arrived at the main office and was ushered into the Principal’s Office to meet with Principal Rutherford and Vice-Principal Barbour. They looked me up and down and the grilling started. "So you want to come to York?" (In retrospect, it didn’t occur to me that I lived in the school district and had the right to attend but in those days you didn’t challenge authority). "What makes you think that York is ready to take you?" (I was so taken with that discussion that I remember it to this day). I think they had a perception of this private school kid thinking that this would be easy and blessing the school with his presence! Of course, in those days authority and law and order were how things worked in schools. Doug Barbour took me down to Mrs. Scott’s English Homeroom in Room 105—and that was the beginning.

I always remember an incident in Mrs. Scott’s English class. The teacher had not yet arrived and the class was a little disruptive. Mr Rutherford was walking down the corridor and one of the students, Rick, made a loud derogatory comment about him. Mr. Rutherford put down his briefcase, came into the room and Rick immediately began leaping over desks, up on the radiator, and out the window! At that time there was a high iron picket fence around the school and with Mr Rutherford running down the backstairs, Rick was up and over that fence, [ as I recall with some assistance] and headed up the middle of Eglinton Avenue as fast as he could run! Mr. Rutherford came back into the class, who by this time had witnessed the entire event and was very subdued. After a moment, he simply announced, "that from this day forward that student is expelled." I don’t believe that Rick ever came back to the school again.

I remember the 1962 T.D.I.A.A. Football Championship team that I played on. This was one of the last times when the championship was really a city wide event. Funny what you remember. It was probably the regional game that was most memorable. We were losing and on the last play of the game, our quarterback Gary Bedel, threw a ‘Hail Mary’ to Dave Bince who made a great catch for a touchdown that got us into the final.

The structure of the school has changed a lot with the new addition added after I left. The main hall and second floor are really much the same. I remember ‘Bugsy’ Arnold’s biology room, Mr Kennedy’s history room, Mr Brubacher’s Latin room, and Mr Dunbar’s room where he taught accounting- at that time teachers pretty much had their own rooms and didn’t move from room to room. I remember being in ‘Danny’ Tompson’s chemistry class when he was writing furiously on the board with the Bunsen burner going full tilt nearby. He always wore that white smock and of course his sleeve caught on fire with Danny being oblivious to it all- until we set up enough of a commotion to bring it to his attention!

The basement has changed dramatically. We never went into the girls’ locker area and vice versa or entered the school through the doors, nor in fact did any students enter through the front doors of the school, the cafeteria was in the middle, with doors opening up into the two gyms that had balconies around them. The old pool is gone. We use to swim in the buff, dive off the windows until a teacher arrived-it was always cold. I remember when Ivars and Barry threw Fred Hall into the pool one day. For some reason I was marched up to the office with both of them to see Doug Barbour who was then the Principal. He was prepared to expel all of us but if we apologized he would look for another punishment which I did ‘for the group’ [since the others would have none of it!]. We received about 2 months of detentions!

When I was here, I was part of a band- actually there were three rock and roll bands at the time. We used to play at the dances in the gymnasium. At one of the Spirit Week assemblies we got dressed up as women- of course with all of the exaggerations you can imagine-to perform. Afterwards two of the teachers-Miss Bennett and Miss Adams- went to Doug Barbour to voice their displeasure at how we had ‘demeaned females’ etc. That never entered our minds and it was all in good fun. Doug Barbour took the position that we had not really intended to offend and didn’t think "we were at the point where we can censor under reasonable grounds". Mr. Barbour was tough but fair and always seemed to be able to see both sides of a story. When I look at ‘Principals’ Row’ today, it is interesting in the first 40 years there were only 3 Principals at the school. In those days, people were hired and seemed to stay in one school their entire careers.

The rotunda at this school continually humbles me. It is like the Parliament Buildings. The pictures of the service men who gave their lives, the stain glass windows- this is really a living memorial dedicated to the contribution of those who came before us and gave so much for this country.

For me, York Memorial has always been a cornerstone school- a bedrock school. Everyone in the community wanted to come here. It was always consistently relevant in terms of its curriculum and pedagogy in the midst of new initiatives and specialized schools built around the area. The enrollment has always been steady. Generation after generation have come through this school. People are always looking for stability in education and they continue to opt to come to York Memorial for that reason. I had a wonderful experience here that I will never forget, cherishing the memories, the teachers and students that helped to shape my character and values.