Former Beaverlodge mayor, educator passes away after fight with COVID

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Leroy Durand, former Beaverlodge mayor, councillor and teacher, passed away in a Calgary hospital Saturday at age 81, following a four-week fight with COVID-19.

Durand served as a councillor for six terms from 1977 to 1998 and as mayor for three terms, from 1998 to 2007.

Durand taught at Beaverlodge Regional High School for approximately 30 years starting around 1970, said fellow-teacher Jack Jewitt.

Additionally, Durand was vice-principal in the 1980s to the end of the 1990s.

Allan Walker, a fellow-Beaverlodge Elk, recalled Durand was a member of the Elks by the mid-1970s “and basically held every position, including exalted ruler.”

Walker said he was president of the Beaverlodge Curling Club and Durand was on council when the current curling rink was built in the early 1990s.

The previous rink was located north of the arena, Walker said.

Current mayor Gary Rycroft credited Durand with getting the current Beaverlodge Public Library built as mayor, moving it from its old location closer to 2nd Ave.

Durand is survived by his wife Irene, daughters Michelle, Lisa and Erin and grandchildren Megan, Alex, Madison, Jack, Sam, Luke, Cameron, George and Charlie.

There will be a celebration of Durand’s life when COVID restrictions are removed.

Condolences can be left at www.McInnisandHolloway.com and tributes can be made to the Seniors On The Bow c/o Town of Cochrane, 101 Ranche House Road, Cochrane, Alberta T4C 2K8.

Brad Quarin, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, Town & Country News