By Dan McDermott – Sierra Club Ontario Chapter Director
The recent passing of Sierra Club Ontario, Niagara Region Group Chair Larry Caldwell was sudden and unexpected. Larry was just 45. He had lived with diabetes for many years, but the disease did little to limit Larry’s work on behalf of Mother Earth and his enthusiastic long term commitment to Sierra Club’s environmental mission. When I became SCO Chapter Director in 2000, Larry was already an active Club volunteer in the Niagara Region.
The initial spark for Larry Caldwell’s environmental awareness came from witnessing the negative impact on his father’s health, and that of the environment that resulted from his dad’s industrial workplace. Larry loved the natural beauty of Niagara and freely volunteered his time to take on the threats to that green beauty. He worked with other Club volunteers to start an SCO Group that addressed issues from Hamilton to the Falls.
In 2008 Larry brought together a team of knowledgeable and experienced environmentalists to found the Niagara Region Section, which soon became the Niagara Region Group. Of course he was elected to be the Group Chair. Larry’s passion was matched by his abilities as a Sierra Club recruiter. Professional writers, journalists and scientists eagerly joined with Larry to protect the land, water and air of their Niagara home. But the vision and the work did not stop there. Larry clearly saw that working to protect his community’s environment also required a strong connection to provincial programs such as the Greenbelt.
Sierra Club Ontario and Larry’s Niagara Region Group team will continue to carry out his mission to protect his local environment and that of the Planet. Larry Caldwell’s legacy is the inspiration he continues to give to us. Goodbye Larry. We’ll take it from here.