The Vics (Montreal), Optimists Alumni
February 20, 1935 - March 2, 2019
From 1960 through 1965 Jim marched in the drum line of the Vics, a Senior corps from Montreal (the Vics had begun as the band of the Victoria Rifles of Canada, an infantry regiment from Montreal). One of Jim's friends talked about The Vics first competition against the Hawthorne Caballeros. Let's just say that it was a sobering experience.
Around 2006 Jim discovered the Optimists Alumni. Jim jumped in to help out as our Business Manager and Transport Manager, sometimes Drum Major or anything else that was needed. When health issues forced him to leave in late 2010 we were very sad to see him go. Jim brought excellence to everything he did.
Jim was the guy who got us into the Toronto St Patrick's Day parade. In fact, Jim was one of the five guys who founded the Toronto St Pat's parade back in 1988! (Actually, there had been an earlier St Pat's parade in Toronto but that parade was last held in 1878.)
Here are a few comments from some of those who knew Jim.
"He was a fine gentleman who will be missed."
"I'm sad to hear this. He was a fine guy."
"Saddened to read this; got to know him, great guy, very supportive, great Irishman."
"Very sad to hear this. Jim was very involved in all the corps activities."
"I remember Jim many years ago when he was in a marching band in Montreal with my brother Earl. They were marching with their band in a parade one weekend when our family saw the band coming up the street marching and playing their instruments. There was my brother Earl marching without his drums and Jim right beside him tapping on his drum set. We had a chuckle but the band group looked so proud and smart marching in this event. "
"Jim was such a nice person and a true gentleman, his winning smile will be missed. "