Hardy (cpd) — The Community Christmas Potluck Dinner took place on Dec. 5 at the Prairie Pride Community Centre in Ceylon, where a special presentation of plaques took place to mark donations from the Eric Chester estate.
Along with a great meal, Santa Claus and fellowship, there were musical selections by Vern and Robin LaCoste and Alfred Bell.
Three plaques were presented on behalf of the estate of Eric Chester, recognizing his contributions to local causes and groups.
Reeve Keith Kaufmann of the RM of The Gap presented three plaques, including to Andy McFadden, chair of the Ceylon Regional Park Authority; deputy mayor Pearl Beland of the Village, for the Prairie Pride Community Centre, and to Joe O’Hara for the Ceylon Co-operative Community Rink.
As Eric and Mary Chester did not have children, they made the decision to leave their estate to charity.
Among the donations was $250,000 to the new Radville Marian Health Care Centre; $75,000 plus some quality antique pieces to the Radville Museum; $75,000 to the Ceylon Regional Park for a new concession stand; $75,000 to the Prairie Pride Community Centre, $75,000 to Ceylon Community Rink, and $75,000 towards a new ambulance for the Pangman area.
Eric and Mary lived out their lives in the Hardy area; they were married Nov. 12, 1940, and farmed for many years. In the late 1950s they moved into Hardy to spend the winter, and in 1962 they stayed.
In 1976 they built a new home, and Eric pursued his love of wood-working while Mary created crafts of her own.
Mary passed on in November 2007, and Eric in February 2011.