Lions Induct New Members, Hand Out Annual Awards

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From left to right. Wayne Bent president, Jim Scala (Distinguished Service Award), Bill Garland (Distinguished Service Award & New Members’ Sponsor) Sue Tunnicliffe (Zone 30 South Chairperson), Bruce Maynard (new inductee), Larry Arsenault (new inductee), Bob Reddick (Lion of the Year)

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Westport Lions Roar

By Lion Bob Reddick

          The Westport Lions Club celebrated their year-end by inducting two new members and presenting their annual awards.

Lion Sue Tunnicliffe, Zone 30 South Chairperson from Gananoque presided over the induction of Bruce Maynard and Larry Arsenault into the Westport Lions Club.   Their sponsor Lion Bill Garland led Bruce and Larry into the room blindfolded and formally introduced the new members to the club. This part of the Induction Ceremony is the symbolic beginning to a member’s service as a Lion.

A Chicago businessman named Melvin Jones founded Lions International in 1917.   “Originally there was no particular direction for Lions, no special cause, but in 1925, eight years after being founded, a blind and deaf woman, Helen Keller, asked permission to speak before the international conference held in Cedar Point, Ohio. She asked the Lions to pick up her crusade and adopt sight conservation as a major project of Lions International. Speaking to a small number of men, she did not foresee the impact she would have when she asked, “Gentlemen, would you be my knights of the blind? We have many problems to overcome and we cannot do them alone, we need help.”

Twenty-five years later, after Helen Keller went on to become one of the most famous women in American history, she came back to the Lions convention with tears in her eyes and said, “Thank you, my knights of the blind. Little did I realize 25 years ago when I asked you to take my cause that I would find Lions not only in America, but in China, Africa and all the other free countries of the world, all working for one goal to eradicate the dreaded disease of blindness.” (Lions International website)

New members are led into the room blind folded to have them experience what it is like to be blind and to emphasize vision was the first and now one of five global causes adopted by Lions. The other four causes are diabetes, hunger, environment, and childhood cancer.

President Wayne Bent presented Distinguished Service Awards to Lions Jim Scala and Bill Garland for their devoted service to the Lions Club of Westport and Lionism.

Lion Jim has spent countless hours being our treasurer, overseeing the cash calendar and taking the initiative to obtain a new sign for the Westport Lions Beach.

President Wayne praised Lion Bill Garland for his hard work in making our spring draw so successful and his positive support of other Lion projects and his recruitment of new members.

            Lion of the Year was presented to Bob Reddick in recognition of his exceptional accomplishments for the Lions Club of Westport.


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