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It is with great regret that I inform you that Senator George McGuire, one of the founding elders of the Métis Nation of Ontario, passed away early in the morning on January 26. Senator George was 85 years old.
Senator George McGuire was a tireless worker for the Métis cause, who contributed immensely to the advancement of Métis rights in Ontario and across Canada. His dedication to the Métis cause pre-dated the formation of the Métis Nation of Ontario and went back as far as the 1970s. In 1993, he played a pivotal role in the early meetings that led to the creation of the MNO and served on the very first Provisional Council of the MNO as a Senator and Elder. He then went on to serve as a PCMNO Senator from 1994 to 2002, and he continued to serve after that as a Honourary Senator.
Senator George was also instrumental in the development of the MNO Housing Branch. As Jean McIsaac recalls: “He was racing to get the Proposal to CMHC office before 4:30 with only minutes to spare because that was the way things got done in the beginning of MNO. There were nil to very limited resources in the early days of MNO, so just getting a proposal prepared, signed by the President in Ottawa then back to Thunder Bay for photo copying and delivery on time was a major accomplishment but just considered routine to our founders, first citizens and early staff!”
Senator George was on the PCMNO when I first joined and I spent many years serving with him. It was a wonderful pleasure when Senator George joined other Metis citizens and leaders from across Ontario at the gala dinner during last year’s Annual General Assembly.
He will be sorely missed by his family and many friends. Senator George was predeceased by his wife Lillian and his 12 brothers and sisters. He is survived by his two children, Maureen Elenan and Lawrence Lavelle, his one grandson, Michael and two great-grandchildren as well as many nieces and nephews, many of who regarded Senator George like a father.
Funeral services will be held on Monday, January 31, 2011 at 11:00 AM in the EVEREST FUNERAL CHAPEL, 299 Waverley St. at Algoma. Visitation for family and friends will be held on Sunday afternoon from 2:00 PM until 4:00 PM in the Everest Chapel.
Please sign the online condolences at www.everestofthunderbay.com