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Lucien J.C. Chouinard August 9, 1947
Lake Shore Mine

Lucien J.C. Chouinard
(1924-1947)

Lucien Chouinard was born to Mr. And Mrs. Conrad Chouinard on August 21, 1924, he was the eldest of a family of twelve children.

Like other 18-year-olds living in this country at war, Lucien joined the Canadian Armed Forces. He rose to Petty Officer in the Royal Canadian Navy and served four years. At the age of 22, he was back in Kirkland Lake.

He worked at Lake Shore but his future plans did not include underground mining. In fact, he had mentioned to his friends that he didn't like mining and he would not stay in it for too long. Chouinard had other plans. His plan was to work in the mine to make some money so he could return to Queen's University and become an engineer. He also had marriage plans, as he was engaged to Mary Ramsay of Kirkland Lake.

On August 9, Chouinard and partner Alvin Culpan were sawing a piece of blocking when a rockburst occurred directly over their heads. The burst in this 4,900-level stope displaced about 100 tons of rock. Chouinard was almost completely buried in fallen rock. Culpan was partially covered and was unable to extricate himself until Shift Boss Peter West and Night Captain William Allen came to his assistance. Culpan received minor cuts and abrasions and a severe bruising, but was not seriously injured.

Dr. G. M. Cameron was called to the scene and remained there until the body of Chouinard was removed six hours after the burst. Death was caused by traumatic asphyxia resulting from a crushing weight of broken rock on his chest and abdomen.

The Funeral Mass for the Navy veteran was held at the Church of the Assumption. Pall bearers were brothers Leo and Ernie, Fernand St. Cyr, Jack Kellaway, Lucien Desjardins and Roger Benoit.

One brother, Leonel, had predeceased him. Surviving were his parents, five sisters, Theresa , 18, Laurette, 17, Rita, 16, Lucille, 10, and Vivian, 7, and five brothers, Leo, 20, Ernie, 14, Emile, 12, Real, 9, and Conrad, 5.

Interment occurred in the Kirkland Lake cemetery. The epitaph on his gravestone reads: "PARTIE MAIS NON OUBLIEE"

The photograph and a confirmation of the accuracy of the story was given by Lucien's sister, Lucille (Mrs. Arnold Merrick), presently (1999) living a retired life with her husband in King Kirkland.

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