Letter: Business owner grateful for community help

A sump pump does its thing between Smith Music and the Scotia Bank building on 100 Street. Town crews will repair the broken water line Monday.

Dear editor:

There have been many times when generous people in the community have come to the aid of Smith Music. From the time the old convent was sold and many arts groups including Smith Music were “homeless” and threatened with insurmountable economic odds. To the incredible effort put forth by members of the community when I decided that I would turn a garage into a music store on a shoe string, elbow grease and with sheer determination. Morinvillians have always shown up with shovels, hammers, knowledge or whatever was needed in challenging times to support this little music store.

Thursday at 4:30 p.m. not knowing that a water main burst on the unserviced lot between Smith Music and the Scotia Bank building a small trickle of water started to come in the building. By 5:30 p.m. the trickle was a stream. At 6:30 p.m. we knew we were losing the battle but had no idea where all this water was coming from. Without hesitation, generous Morinvillians stepped up. People had grabbed shovels to make a trench to the street from the place we assumed was the issue. We made a small wall inside with sand bags. A crew of four that had went home to get water pumps, shop vacs, buckets managed to make an emergency sump pump due to Cory Roy who ran home to grab a jack hammer. What are the odds that at 9:30 at night in a self-assembled group of volunteers someone will happen to have a jackhammer five minutes away! As Shawn Nolin and Mr. Roy took shifts on the jack hammer in six inches of water, making a hole through seven inches of 60-year-old concrete was no match for their determination to prevent massive flood damage to my store. Meanwhile, Ian Parritt and Charmine Enns headed up a crew outside to dig a channel to lead water away from the building. Even though people had day jobs to go to, people stayed until they had done all they could. Finally when it was clear at 1:30 a.m. that we had won and minimized damage the final members of this small but mighty community army went home.

So many people that I don’t even know came together to save my store and I am so grateful for all of the help. Hearing people in the crew say things like “this is why I love living in a small town” and “I couldn’t walk away when it was clear someone needed help” make me feel proud and thankful that I have chosen such an amazing community to set up shop in.

Thank-you all so much

Sincerely,
Paul Smith

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