by Jim McGregor, Langley Advance Times contributor
As the year of their reign draws to a close, Langley’s current seniors of the year – Marilyn Fischer and Jim Simning – have many fond memories, from representing their community at parades, banquets and local events.
Simning enjoyed all the attention.
“It worked out very well for us and we were able to meet many new people at all the events we attended,” he said. “We had many wonderful meals and had good experiences wherever we went.”
Fischer recalled one event that took her by surprise.
“We were in the Langley City Christmas Parade in the back of a car. I wore white gloves so people could see me waving,” she recounted. “I noticed that as soon as the people saw the sign on the car announcing who we were, they were shouting ‘Thank-you.’ That was very touching, people we didn’t know personally thanking us for our community service. It makes all those hours that you extend yourself volunteering suddenly seem worthwhile.”
The couple acknowledged that their families were impressed with their selection.
“We both have daughters that don’t leave here in Langley and they came out for the June presentation. They were surprised to find out everything we were involved in.” Simning added that his brother was surprised and impressed, too, by the nomination.
Langley Seniors Resource Centre – which oversees the seniors of the year awards and chooses one man and one woman annually – decided not one but both members of this married couple should be recognized as Langley seniors of the year for 2018.
Fischer, a retired social worker, was co-chair of the Triple A Senior Housing Summit, sat on the Township seniors advisory committee, and is involved in the Langley Senior Community Action Table. She was instrumental in the Triple A Housing seniors survey and cares about seniors’ welfare, poverty, housing and health care. She worked for Langley Memorial Hospital, finally retiring in 2010, and had a consulting business for a few years.
Simning, 81, volunteers at the seniors resource centre – and has done so for seven years now – since the couple took the volunteer training together.
He reads to school children at Blacklock Elementary, was involved in efforts to keep the CN train station open to the public, is involved with the Langley Heritage Society, and is a supporter of Fischer’s efforts.
Fischer encourages people to talk to seniors, find out what they do in the community, and nominate some worthy candidates for next year’s award.
You can nominate a single man, and single woman, or a couple.
Nominations are now open for seniors of the year 2019-20, people who have contributed to the Langley community through volunteering or service?
Nomination forms are available at recreation centres throughout the City and Township and must be returned to the Langley Seniors Centre by May 17, 2019, 20605-51B Ave., Langley V3A 9H1. For more info., call Janice McTaggart at 604-530-3020 ext. 302.