Here’s a ‘schmaltzy’ story I picked up off my old friend Laurie’s Facebook page. Laurie, or Sargent Lawrence Sager, as he is officially known in the Toronto Police Service (TPS), is a son of District 6 in Cote Saint-Luc. Growing up in the late 60s and 70s in CSL, he attended Westminster Elementary School and went on to Wagar High School. He was a neighbourhood buddy of mine and eventually we volunteered together at CSL Emergency Measures Organization.
After graduating McGill University Laurie went on to join the RCMP, eventually moving to Toronto and joining the TPS, where he has served with distinction for over 27 years.
Lawrence penned these words a few days ago:
Last June, while performing my sworn duties out on the road, I received a phone call from a woman, who identified herself as Gloria Price. Ms. Price is an elementary school teacher who teaches out of Pleasant Public School in the same area that I police. She referred to me as Laurie, a name that I hadn’t heard in 40 years. You see, Ms. Price started her teaching career in 1970 at Westminster School, located in Cote St Luc, where I grew up. I happened to go to Westminster School and my Grade 2 teacher, 45 years ago was Ms. Price.
From my telephone conversation I was somewhat skeptical that the caller was the same lady that taught me, all those years ago, but incredibly, she described me exactly the way I looked back then. Needless to say, school was out for the summer, so I told her that when school reconvenes in September, I would stop by to see her.
This morning, upon my arrival at the school, we finally reconnected. It was an emotional experience as I was a student of hers at the beginning of her career and after 45 long years she’s still going strong. Back then I was 7 years old and an awkward, scrawny shrimp of a kid, who she was kind enough to remember over the years and countless students. It was great seeing her again. I happened to be standing on a bench in the last row, next to her in the class picture so I thought I would take another just to show what 45 years looks like.
What a fabulous story and chance encounter that ties in so well with the recent launch of the CSL Historical Society where we seek to share memories and photos of earlier days in our city.
Former EMO member (and another old friend of mine and Laurie’s), Patti-Beth Leitman, had this to say: “WOW!!! What a GREAT story and you BOTH look fabulous!! Both ageing very well!!”
Another fellow CSL EMO volunteer from way back, Mitchell Sinclair, said, “She was my teacher as well in grade two, one year after you. Small world.”
Thanks for sharing this story Laurie. I’m proud of your accomplishments and to call you my friend for so many years.
Now, how many others remember Ms. Price from Westminster School in the 70s? Or Laurie? Please do share your memories.