Recipients of the Meritorious Service Cross (Civil Division)
Nicole Marcil-Gratton, C.Q., M.S.C. (posthumous)
Michèle Viau-Chagnon, C.Q., M.S.C.
Deeply committed to the well-being of children with life-threatening illnesses, Michèle Viau-Chagnon and Nicole Marcil-Gratton were instrumental in the great achievements of The Lighthouse, Children and Families. For 20 years, they have been involved in Quebec’s social and community development, establishing the province’s first respite and pediatric palliative care home. Since its founding, Maison André-Gratton has become a place of welcome and comfort, a safe harbour in the storm for more than 800 families in need of support.
The decoration awarded to the late Nicole Marcil-Gratton will be presented to her son, Mr. François Gratton.
Garry Janz, M.S.C.
Carleton Place, Ontario
Byron Smith, M.S.C.
Garry Janz and Byron smith are the co-founders of Ride For Dad, which raises funds and awareness for prostate cancer research through large scale one-day ride events. Under their leadership, the organization has expanded to 44 chapters, involving thousands of volunteers and participants across Canada. To date, $33 million has been donated to biomedical research communities, resulting in the development of new treatment strategies and more personalized care for patients.
The Meritorious Service Decoration awarded to Mr. Janz was presented to him at a previous ceremony.
Recipients of the Meritorious Service Medal (Civil Division)
Subhas Bhargava, M.S.M.
Uttra Bhargava, M.S.M.
Through their leadership, advocacy and philanthropy, Subhas and Uttra Bhargava have helped improve the lives of those living with neurodegenerative diseases and spinal cord injuries. Their contributions helped create two research chairs at the Ottawa Hospital Research Institute and supported initiatives that have positioned Canada as a leader in this field. They also played a role in launching Brain Health Awareness Week through the University of Ottawa.
Jacques Janson, M.S.M.
Known for his outstanding commitment to the duty of remembrance and his professionalism in the area of military commemorations, Jacques Janson has also distinguished himself by his tireless efforts to honour Francophone veterans from western Canada. His generosity to our country is inspiring, both in his efforts to restore Franco-Manitoban military memorials and in the conferences he hosts highlighting the tremendous sacrifice of Canada’s fallen soldiers.
Victoria Lennox, M.S.M.
Cyprian Szalankiewicz, M.S.M.
Victoria Lennox and Cyprian Szalankiewicz founded Startup Canada to unite, support and provide a cohesive voice for Canada’s entrepreneurs. Through inclusive national and grassroots programs that unite entrepreneurs and build key competencies, Startup Canada has directly supported more than 350 000 entrepreneurs in 50 start-up communities, thereby enhancing economic development and building an environment for entrepreneurship in Canada.
Recipients of the Medal of Bravery
Sylvain Beauchamp, M.B.
On May 11, 2017, Sylvain Beauchamp rescued his friend who had fallen off of his motorcycle on a busy highway in Saint-Jérôme, Quebec. As he was out for a ride with two of his friends, one of them lost control of his motorcycle, fell onto the highway and rolled for several metres. Mr. Beauchamp parked on the median, at the junction of the two roadways, and quickly crossed the highway, running between vehicles travelling at full speed. He grabbed his friend by his jacket collar and dragged him to the shoulder, completely to the left of the highway, to safety.
Alexandre Beaudoin-Vachon, M.B.
Sébastien Tousignant, M.B.
On June 17, 2017, Alexandre Beaudoin-Vachon and Sébastien Tousignant rescued a man from his burning apartment in Saint-Rémi, Quebec. Spotting the fire from a nearby pub, Mr. Tousignant climbed onto the balcony of the second-floor unit and entered through the patio door. Overcome by the smoke, he passed out next to the victim on the floor. Off-duty firefighter Beaudoin-Vachon entered the building through the front door, looking for occupants, but was soon forced back by the thick smoke and intense heat. He circled around the building and climbed up onto the same balcony through which Mr. Tousignant had entered. Spying two prone bodies inside, he pulled Mr. Tousignant out of the apartment, allowing him to regain consciousness. Together, the two men carried the victim outside, passing him to the care of bystanders.
The decoration awarded to Mr. Sébastien Tousignant will be presented to him at a later date.
Christopher Gascon, M.B.
On December 24, 2017, Christopher Gascon rescued a man after his tractor broke through the ice into the frigid waters of the Ottawa River, in Ottawa, Ontario. Mr. Gascon immediately hopped onto his snowmobile and made his way to the scene. Unable to see the victim, he jumped into the freezing water and attempted to open the tractor door. On his fourth try, he was able to extract the unconscious man and pull him to the surface. Mr. Gascon dragged himself out of the water and, with the help of a bystander, brought the victim to a nearby garage, where he was then transported to the hospital.
Christopher McManus-Lowson, M.B.
On March 6, 2018, in Montréal, Quebec, Christopher McManus-Lowson saved a man in distress who was attempting to jump from an overpass above a highway. When he saw the man sitting on the overpass wall, Mr. McManus-Lowson quickly got out of his vehicle, approached the man and lifted him to safety on the ground. The large, agitated man managed to get back up, with Mr. McManus-Lowson on his back, and return to the overpass wall. Mr. McManus-Lowson continued to hold him by the arm, so the man pulled him onto the wall, putting them at risk of toppling over. Mr. McManus-Lowson finally got the man away from the wall and held him down on the sidewalk a second time until help arrived.
Thierry Sauvain, M.B.
On August 9, 2016, Thierry Sauvain rescued a colleague who was being attacked by one of her clients at a local community service centre in Montréal. Mr. Sauvain heard cries for help coming from the front lobby of the building and found the victim kneeling on the floor, being struck by a man wielding a hockey stick. Mr. Sauvain immediately stepped between the aggressor and the victim, attempting to reason with the man, without success. The assailant then began to repeatedly strike Mr. Sauvain who endured the vicious attack as the victim banged on one of the locked office doors for help. Finally, someone opened a door leading into another office, which allowed the victim and Mr. Sauvain to escape.
Sébastien Vallerand, M.B.
On January 28, 2018, in Granby, Quebec, Sébastien Vallerand rescued a man from his burning workshop. When he noticed the fire coming from the neighbouring house, Mr. Vallerand went to see what was happening. A woman was calling for help, saying that her husband was unconscious inside his workshop. As the flames raged and the smoke greatly reduced visibility, he entered and found the man on the ground about a metre from the door. He grabbed the unconscious and much larger man and pulled him out of the workshop to safety at the other end of the balcony.
Recipients of the Sovereign’s Medal for Volunteers
Since joining the Canadian Red Cross in 2006, Chris Allen has become a valuable member of its emergency response team. Having previously served as a personal disaster assistance responder, he applies his training and skills during disaster relief initiatives.
Over the past 20 years, Fred Demaray has been involved in Ottawa’s interfaith community, focusing on issues related to hospitals, long-term care, secondary education, affordable housing and ecumenical structures. Through the Multifaith Housing Initiative, he has engaged faith leaders to take action on affordable housing and social justice issues.
Since 2010, Jeanne Gagnon has been a full-time volunteer with Helping With Furniture, which provides furniture and household goods to families in need. In addition to fostering bilingualism through her translation work, she has developed multiple partnerships in the community, organized fundraisers, maintained the furniture warehouse and promoted environmental awareness.
For more than 20 years, Susie James has been organizing camps and developing training programs for Scout groups in Ottawa. In 2016, she was appointed as group commissioner for the 23rd Nepean Scouting Group, where she manages the program for 175 youth in the National Capital Region.
For more than 15 years, Larry Matschke made Christmas a little brighter as Barrhaven’s own Santa Claus. His specialized home visits with sick children helped families enjoy and celebrate the holidays, and his fundraising efforts have supported a variety of causes, including the local food bank and the Make-A-Wish Foundation.
Baie d’Urfé, Quebec
Since 1996, Ebrahim Noroozi has volunteered with the board of the Canadian Registered Safety Professionals, where he helps review the qualifications of applicants and welcomes newly certified members to the organization. He is also a long-standing member of the McGill Alumni Association who serves on the board of the Macdonald branch and helps organize events and fundraisers.
Since 2001, Michael Roche has been helping vulnerable people with their income tax returns, ensuring everyone—from seniors and students to refugees and those at risk of homelessness—receives their benefits. He provides accounting services through various organizations in the Ottawa area and travels long distances to complete forms for housebound clients.
Since 1996, Peggy Vink has been serving Girl Guides of Canada as a volunteer photographer, graphic designer and unit guider. As the newspaper editor and communications volunteer for LEAP 2019 (the first-ever Girl Guide camp sponsored by the Ontario and Nunavut councils), she helped girls find their authentic voices by reporting, writing and publishing their own stories.
Many young people in Montréal are now more aware of sexuality, gender identity, diversity and inclusivity due to Kimberly Wong’s educational workshops, Sexual Information Leads to Knowledge (SILK). As the director of the Canadian Association of Education and Outreach, she promotes sexual health and advocates for the LGBTQ2+ community.