It has been two months since my last blog. Life gets busy at times and that has to take priority. Since we last met activities in the community are taking place. Notably, the annual Walk to the Stone took place on the usual date, the last Sunday of May. By all accounts it was well attended. Bloomsday Montreal recently wrapped up another festival.
With life getting busy things are status quo concerning the Historian portfolio but I’d like to share with you developments from the last few days. D’Arcy Quinn, great great grandson of Thomas D’Arcy McGee, contacted the St. Patrick’s Society in an effort to be able to enter the crypt where McGee’s remains. I got involved in my capacity as a Society vice president along with its Historian, Peter Shea. I wanted to make sure a connection was made between Mr. Quinn and the cemetery. In the end he was able to make a connection on his own. But as a result of our correspondence we agreed to meet last evening. He had to be a good guy; he’s a Quinn afterall. Continue reading Thomas D’Arcy McGee
The Saving the Famine Irish exhibit is at the Centaur Theatre in Old Montreal this week and it will cost you nothing to see it. It’s well worth the price of admission. Don’t delay.
Ken Quinn, Historian
Saving the Famine Irish exhibit comes to Montreal By Gloria Henriquez A special opening reception at the Centaur Theatre for the “Saving the Famine Irish” Exhibition, Monday, April 11, 2016. MONTREAL – It is a story of survival and compassion. The exhibit comes from Connecticut’s Great Hunger Institute at Quinnipiac University, which hosted the exhibition from March 17, […]
I was shocked and saddened to learn of Trisha Reid’s passing. Trisha was a Parade Princess in 1998, my first year on the Elected Executive and therefore invited to numerous functions along with the Queen & Court. May Trisha rest in peace and may her family be comforted by the many fond memories they have of Trisha.
I’m struggling with pain more than ever before. It looks like the cancer is fighting back despite my wildest efforts to wrap up my gloves and face off in the ring. I made it this far before going down for round 1 and now I need you all to help me get back up.
Both Arianna and Claudia dropped everything to be by my side this weekend along with some of my true friends to help me mitigate this pain and face the good and the bad of this nasty disease.
There is no good time to do the next step. It’s one of the more important pieces for me to find peace and to let go for the village to catch those I love.
Please be gentle. Please be kind. Please remember what it’s all about.
The United Irish Societies of Montreal is going through a difficult time. Longtime historian Don Pidgeon passed away February 8. His funeral was celebrated February 20 at the historic St. Patrick’s Basilica. Earlier this week we were informed that another longtime member, Ken O’Donnell, passed away in hospital following a recent illness.
On Monday the voice of a United Irish Societies treasure fell silent when my friend and fellow past president passed away peacefully at home.
The last time I saw Don was in late November when he was spending some time at the new super hospital. I was off work that day, was headed in to town, and thought I’d drop in unannounced to say “Hi”. The sun was shining and he had a beautiful view from his window, so beautiful that he was enjoying a late morning nap in his chair. I could certainly relate. Warmth and sunshine beaming through a huge window is a recipe for a good nap. So Don didn’t see me. We were often in touch via e-mail. I would send an e-mail asking a question or simply to say “Hi” and to see how he was feeling. My last e-mail to him was sent Sunday evening to let him know an old friend sent his regards, having explained to the friend was gravely ill. Before that I sent a quick e-mail letting Don know we miss him and that we hoped to see him at one of the many Irish events if his health permitted. Don replied in an uncharacteristically short e-mail “Thanks, Don”
Some people may be wondering who is this Don Pidgeon that I have mentioned the last little while. So here is a short blog on what I know about him.
Donald Pidgeon was born the youngest child of William James Pidgeon and Marjorie Black 1. Growing up, family was important to Don and his siblings Thelma, Rita, and Bill, and is equally important today. Although his children are spread across the globe, Don and his wife Nadia (Ewasiechko) are always in touch with their children James and Jennifer (Emile) and their granddaughter Romy.
Don grew up in Griffintown, living there from 1940 to 1966, and has resided in Dorval since 1973. He had a 35 year career in retail before retiring in 1996.
Don joined the United Irish Societies of Montreal in 1968, where he quickly became involved with the organization’s activities, moving up the ladder from year to year…