The Town of Spaniard’s Bay is taking steps to honour one of its past mayors in conjunction with its 50th anniversary in 2015.
During the town’s March 3 regular council meeting, Coun. Tony Dominix tabled a motion that would see the town dedicate its municipal building in honour of longtime former mayor the late Lewis R. Gosse.
Before making the motion, Dominix said he researched Gosse’s history with the community.
“To see what he did do for the town, I decided to make the motion,” he said.
Mayor J. Wayne Smith got the ball rolling when the meeting shifted to talks of the town’s golden anniversary.
He suggested the building be renamed the Lewis R. Gosse Municipal Building.
“It’s just a sign of respect,” said Smith. “It was well-received.”
The motion passed with one vote against it.
Coun. Sheri Collins was the one who elected to go contra to her fellow councillors.
In the minutes of the meeting, she stated she felt “the town hall should not be named to reflect the contributions of any particular former mayor, as this may overshadow the contributions of all other mayors who have made significant contributions to the town.”
Further along, she suggested there are other avenues to pursue if the town wants to recognize former mayors.
Collins is the daughter of John W. Drover, who recently retired from municipal politics after many years on council, including 16 as mayor. Drover twice defeated Gosse in mayoral elections.
But the naming of the town hall continues a similar movement in Spaniard’s Bay.
“We’ve done it in the past,” said Smith.
The council chamber is named after former mayor Calvin M. Gosse, while there is also the Harold F. Gosse Memorial Park and the Wesley Gosse United Church Heritage Building Museum.
Working with Lewis
Gosse served as the town’s mayor for four non-consecutive terms.
The current mayor worked alongside Gosse, when Smith was the town’s clerk.
“(Lewis R. Gosse) loved Spaniard’s Bay,” said Smith. “Whatever he could do for the town, he did.”
Gosse played many roles in the town.
He served as chairman of the local school board and was instrumental in the building of the new Holy Redeemer Elementary.
“He was a good churchman,” said Smith.
When contacted by The Compass, Patsy Gosse said her family was ”very honoured” to know how the town planned to honour her late husband.
“We’re very pleased and very thankful,” she said.
Smith said the dedication of the town hall will be a part of the town’s anniversary celebrations next year.
Although there is no formal plan, council is in support of the decision.
“He was one of our respected citizens,” said Smith.