[:en]Mickey Johnstone, an Inspiration to Many[:fr]Mickey Johnstone, une source d’inspiration[:]


Mickey Johnstone passed away peacefully with family by her side on August 31st, 2015.

Mickey Johnstone passed away peacefully with family by her side on August 31st, 2015.

With the death of Mickey Johnstone on August 31, 2015 in Orillia, Ontario, Canadian camping has lost a great leader. Together with her husband, Ron, who inspired the creation of CCA’s highest honour, The Ron Johnstone Lifetime Achievement Award, Mickey founded and directed, Camp White Bear on Lake Temagami, Ontario. Ron and Mickey began their camping career working for the YMCA and after closing White Bear, they continued working in camping with Jack Pearse at Camp Tawingo.

Mickey was a long time member of the OCA Education Committee and a frequent presenter at OCA conferences. Because of her many contributions to camping in Ontario, the Ron and Mickey Johnstone Youth Leadership Award is presented each year at the annual conference to two outstanding youth leaders in camping. Mickey always attended the final banquet to present these awards personally. By popular demand, she traditionally opened her presentation with a joke – always a somewhat racy joke, unexpected from a lady of her mature years! Mickey’s sense of humour was contagious. Chauffeured by Jane McCutcheon, every summer, Mickey endeavored to visit these young award winners in their camp setting. Her interest in and support of youth and camping continued throughout her lifetime.

Mickey’s failing health necessitated her being hooked up to a dialysis machine three times a week for the past sixteen years. But her zest for life never faltered! She continued to enjoy line dancing, volunteering with Grandmothers to Grandmothers and working at her church. Mickey loved life and she loved people. A visit with her was a sheer joy, full of stories and laughter. Mickey will be sorely missed by all those who had the privilege of knowing and loving her.[:fr]Mickey Johnstone passed away peacefully with family by her side on August 31st, 2015.

Le décès de Mickey Johnstone, survenu le 31 août 2015 à Orillia (Ontario), a fait perdre à l’Association des camps du Canada (ACC) une contributrice inestimable au milieu des camps. Avec son mari, Ron Johnstone – qui a inspiré la création de la plus haute distinction de l’ACC, le prix Ron Johnstone pour l’ensemble des réalisations –, Mickey a fondé et dirigé le Camp White Bear au lac Temagami, en Ontario. Au début de leur carrière dans le milieu des camps, Ron et Mickey ont travaillé au YMCA. Puis, après la fermeture du Camp White Bear, ils ont travaillé au Camp Tawingo avec Jack Pearse.

Mickey a longtemps fait partie du Comité de formation de l’Association des camps de l’Ontario (ACO) et a fait de nombreuses présentations aux conférences de l’ACO. En l’honneur des nombreuses contributions de Mickey au milieu des camps en Ontario, l’ACO décerne chaque année, lors de sa conférence annuelle, le prix Ron et Mickey Johnstone à deux jeunes leaders exceptionnels. Mickey assistait toujours au banquet de clôture pour remettre le prix en mains propres. À la demande générale, elle commençait sa présentation par une bague quelque peu osée, ce qui est assez étonnant compte tenu de son âge respectable! Et son sens de l’humour était contagieux. Chaque été, accompagnée de Jane McCutcheon, Mickey faisait tout en son possible pour aller rendre visite aux jeunes lauréats dans leur camp respectif. Elle a continué de manifester son intérêt et son soutien envers les jeunes et les camps tout au long de sa vie.

En raison de sa santé fragile, Mickey a passé les seize dernières années de sa vie à recevoir des traitements de dialyse trois fois par semaine. Mais sa joie de vivre, elle, est demeurée intacte. Elle pratiquait encore la danse en ligne, faisait du bénévolat pour la campagne Grandmothers to Grandmothers et consacrait du temps à son église. Mickey aimait la vie et aimait aussi les gens. Lui rendre visite était un moment de pur bonheur, rempli d’anecdotes savoureuses et de rires. Elle manquera beaucoup à tous ceux qui ont eu la chance de la connaître et de l’aimer.[:]


About Catherine Ross

Catherine's lifelong love of camping began in 1953 when she accompanied her mother, the new camp cook, to Camp Tanamakoon in Algonquin Park. She remained at Tan until 1978 as a camper and in several staff roles. After five years as a teacher, in 1979, Catherine and her husband George purchased Camp Mi-A-Kon-Da for girls in Parry Sound, Ontario which they owned for 20 years. Catherine has served on the Board of the Ontario Camps Association, and is Past President of the Society of Camp Directors. She is served as Communications Officer on the Board of the CCA, as is a recipient of the CCA's Ron Johnstone Lifetime Achievement Award. She is past editor of Camps Canada, published by the CCA, and the OCAsional News, the newsletter of the OCA. She is the author of four publications. Her articles on camping have appeared in numerous magazines.
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