3 Rs




Sunday, April 28, 2013

Ontario Volunteer Service Award

Racquel Carlow, President of the Science Teachers Association of Ontario (STAO) sent me an email a few months ago to inform me that she had nominated me to receive an Ontario Volunteer Service Award. I was flattered by the gesture and I thanked her for the thought.

On April 16th, I received in the mail an invitation to attend the 2013 Volunteer Service Awards on April 22nd at Deer Creek Golf Club. I cried. I was humbled and grateful that an organization thought enough about me to nominate me for a service award. STAO nominated me for my 15 years of service.

I was only allowed to bring one guest and I brought my wife, Karen.

I was one of 255 recipients to receive an award at the ceremony. Awards ranged from 5 years to 60 years of service. Some of the organizations were local community groups, Girl Guides of Canada, various Groups of Scouts Canada, skating clubs, horticultural societies, youth centres and health centres just to name a few.

MPP John O’Toole for Durham was in attendance along with dignitaries from various branches of the government.

It was a wonderful evening that I will treasure and reflect upon as I continue to serve.

[NOTE: I purposely blocked out the signature of the Honourable John O'Toole.]

Sunday, April 7, 2013

SEEC Part 4

I arose at 6:00 am on the morning of February 9, 2013, and went through my usual morning ceremonies to prepare myself for another day. I would be giving my workshop this morning and I was excited. I went downstairs for the complimentary breakfast enjoying scrambled eggs, sausage, and freshly baked buns which I adorned with lots of strawberry jam. The TV was on in the lobby and I heard more news of the snowstorm that hit the Eastern Seaboard up to and including Toronto.

When I finished breakfast, I got on the internet to learn that my flight back to Toronto had been cancelled. I asked Steve, the hotel manager if I could stay another night if I had to and he said that he was booked solid. He said me would try the Marriott near the airport and let me know. I asked Steve if I could check out at 1:00 pm instead of the required 11:00 am since I had to give a workshop at the Space Center and wouldn’t be back in time to check out by 11:00. He said that would be okay.

I grabbed the shuttle and headed for the Space Center. When I arrived, I had an hour to kill so I thought I would take in any part of the building I hadn’t seen. I saw a sign that said “Stage Bypass.” I followed it and was I ever surprised. There was about a ¼ length replica of the ISS and I was inside it. There were dials and panels on the walls and it looked very impressive indeed. I stepped out of the ISS replica and entered another room that was dimly lit. Behind a glass panel was a moonscape with a rover sitting upon it. This was so cool. I realized I had 15 minutes to get my gear and head for my room. I picked up my kit that I mailed a couple of weeks earlier, loaded three boxes onto a dolly and headed to the auditorium to do my presentation.

I set up my computer and began unpacking my boxes when this young woman asked if I needed any help. Her name is Becky Russel l Loy. She finished setting up my computer for me, got a tech aide to connect the speakers and I put items into baskets which Becky and I distributed to the tables where educators were seated. I showed my video prepared for me by Steve Lang of the Canadian Space Resource Center, which showed the first Canadarm to Canadarm 2 assisting in the docking of Space X. Following the video, I introduced myself and began my workshop. I had an hour and a half and wondered how I’d fill the time. When I finished my workshop, I had only 5 minutes left to give out my door prizes Which I share at all my presentations. Just about everybody went home with something. I thought the workshop went very well.

Following the workshop, I ran into my friend Jeff. I told him I had to get to my hotel to check out and see about a place to stay. I thanked Angela, who organized the conference, then Jeff and I split a cab and I returned to my hotel. I checked out and Steve told me that he had a room for me at the gain. I told Steve about this. He told me not to cancel my room at the airport Marriott until I was boarding the plane. I thanked Steve for all his help and his excellent service. The shuttle arrived and I was off.
Marriott by the airport if I needed it. I had about an hour before the shuttle was to pick me up for the airport. I got online and discovered my flight was back on a

I’m definitely going back next year. There is still so much more to see.

Thank you Johnson Space Center, Angela Case, Brian Ewenson and my new friend Jeff for a wonderful learning experience. I had a blast.