The Dryden Observer

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Dryden’s loss is Red Lake’s gain

Chris Marchand

Chris Marchand served as editor of the Dryden Observer from August 2009 to April 2018.
Angela Bujold at a recent Dryden Entertainment Series event. Photo by Chris Marchand

I don’t think it’s overly self-indulgent to use this space to bid farewell to a friend, especially when that friend has served Dryden to the degree that Angela Bujold has.

At last Thursday’s Dryden Entertainment Series presentation, hundreds of patrons got to their feet in a rousing ovation, a moving tribute to Bujold’s 21 years as one of the organization’s founding members and a leader in the cultural development of the community.

It’s a staggering loss for our community and a tremendous gain for the town of Red Lake.

When it comes right down to it, one of Bujold’s most admirable qualities can be distilled from what her fellow Rotarians might know best about her — a high and clear voice leading the club in O’Canada, or the Rotary prayer at their weekly lunch meeting.

Unlike some of us who mumble our way self-consciously through the formalities, Bujold is not afraid to sing loudly, for all to hear.

I think it speaks to a quality of character that is rare among the best of us. The idea of singing, I mean really singing, feels a bit like standing naked before your peers. It’s an ultimate expression of confidence.

That confidence follows Angie into her professional life in the health care field where her skill as a profoundly sensitive communicator has moved her from the physiotherapy department into a post in Dryden Regional Health Centre’s senior administration.

There’s something about the field of physiotherapy that imbues such strong relationship-building skills in its practitioners. I am certain that guiding patients through a world of pain towards recovery sharpens one’s sense of empathy and leadership, instructs a person to motivate another without alienating and inspires trust.

In our own interactions, Bujold has proven herself capable of wrapping this maniacal newspaper editor around her little finger with a hard-to-balance mixture of praise and sincerity that my ilk are powerless to deny.

But far beyond that she has been an endless cultivator of good ideas, a catalyst and facilitator to logistically improbable schemes and a mentor to my greater ambitions.

Myself and many others in this community remain in debt of her service, her grace and her poise.

Don’t be a stranger, Angie.

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