Letter: Ronaghan leaves behind a legacy

Roy believed in the public good and the responsibility of being an active citizen, writes CUPE president Steve Crossman.

It is with deep sadness that we write regarding Roy Ronaghan, who recently passed away.

Roy was a former library trustee for Grand Forks and District Public Library but more importantly, a champion for the public. Roy believed in the public good and the responsibility of being an active citizen.

He saw apathy as the greatest enemy and asked difficult questions to shed light on social justice issues and encouraged us all to be engaged and active.

Roy was a quiet, private person with a passion for transparency and accountability. He attended all council meetings, sometimes as the only member of the public in attendance.

Roy loved libraries. On his holidays he would visit other libraries and bring ideas and brochures back to Grand Forks to share with us.  He donated books on important issues to the library and was a great supporter of library workers. He joined us on the picket line every day during the long and difficult three-month lockout in 2009.

He had a wry sense of humour. Once he turned up at the picket line with an ironing board and set it up on the front steps, along with a sign reading: “It’s time to iron things out.”

We will miss his regular column in the Grand Forks Gazette.

We will miss his intelligence and research skills, but especially his passion for Grand Forks and Christina Lake. He was very concerned about the environment and development in the Boundary and elsewhere.

He leaves a legacy of solid support for public services and friendship with the people of this community. Now it is up to the rest of us to respect his legacy by asking the difficult questions that make us think and take action.

Steve Crossman, CUPE 2254 President

on behalf of Grand Forks CUPE 2254 library workers