I sat on my front porch Monday morning looking at the small Canadian flag placed on the neighbourhood’s lawns the night before by a team of volunteers dedicated to keeping the memory of what that flag stands for alive. While I was pleased to see our nation’s flag standing erect on my front lawn, I was reminded the Canadian flag was sitting at half-mast on poles throughout town. Our mayor had died.
Mayor Paul Krauskopf passed away the morning of June 30 after a three-year battle with cancer, one he fought like a prizefighter, never losing hope or faith. Although his deteriorating health must have made his final weeks in office difficult, not once did our mayor veer from his commitment to his office or his community.
In the week of his passing, Mayor Krauskopf met with our member of parliament in Edmonton to discuss infrastructure. He also attended and presided over the June 25 Council meeting, a marathon session that ran until almost midnight.
Had he not been taken from us on the eve of Canada Day, I am certain he would have been in St. Jean Baptiste Park Monday afternoon celebrating our Country’s 146th birthday. It is the kind of man he was – proud of his country, proud of his community, and dedicated to both.
Our mayor is survived by his father, his wife, eight children, seven grandchildren and the 8,569 residents of the community he loved and was proud to call home.
While the mourning and deep sense of loss is greatest in the Krauskopf household, our community and many beyond weep at the passing of a great man who is remembered as a gentle and giving soul with a strong sense of community.
In a community there is no finer thing to be called than citizen. For me, Paul Krauskopf was our finest example of what it is to be a citizen.
We have lost a vital citizen and pillar of our community, one who upheld Morinville in his every thought and action. It will take many of us to form a column as strong as the pillar he represented, but he has provided us all with a good blueprint to work from.
A mayor, a citizen, and a friend have died. Morinville mourns his passing and honours his memory. The best way in which we can continue to honour the memory of Mayor Paul Krauskopf is to be a little more like him. And what a wonderful community that would make.
– Stephen Dafoe