the Liberal Prime Minister received a warm welcome under brilliant sunshine in Parc Sauvé.
Crédit photo : (Journal Saint-François - Pierre Langevin)
Dozens of people took selfies with Justin Trudeau, Prime Minister of Canada, on Sunday afternoon, June 24 while he was visiting Delpha-Sauvé Park in Salaberry-de-Valleyfield to celebrate Quebec’s Fête nationale.
Accompanied by his wife, Sophie Grégoire, sons, Xavier and Hadrien along with Vaudreuil MP, Peter Schiefke, Trudeau stepped foot in Valleyfield 50 years after his father, the late Prime Minister Pierre Elliot Trudeau did the same in 1968. He started his tour on Victoria St. shortly before 1:30 p.m., crossed the bridge that spans the old Beauharnois Canal and met with citizens. The news of his visit to the Suroît capital had been leaked on social media a few hours earlier.
Very quickly, dozens of people came out to meet him, exchange a few words and take photos with the politician known for his love of self portraits. Needless to say, Justin Trudeau quickly upstaged the Caillou character who was performing on the stage set up in the park. Of course, there was a large security contingent in place to prevent any outbreak like the one that occurred in Old Montreal the evening before in which Trudeau was harshly called out by a proponent of sovereignty.
Instead, the Liberal Prime Minister received a warm welcome under brilliant sunshine in Parc Sauvé, although journalists were unable to speak to him. Vickie Courchesne was among the first to be immortalized alongside Trudeau. “It was fun, I enjoyed it,” she said. “I worked on Parliament Hill for three years and I passed him a few times in the halls but I never had a chance to talk to him.”
Mylène Lapointe and her young son had been there since 10 o’clock Sunday morning and also took a photo with the Prime Minister of Canada. “It’s really more for my son Zacharie,” she said. “I wanted him to understand that this is someone important who wants to help us as much as he can.” Retired businessman, Jean-Claude Billette, recounted to Trudeau how he had met his father, Pierre Elliot Trudeau, at the official opening of the Valleyfield post office during the summer of 1968.
For Meghan Condie from Huntingdon, a selfie with Trudeau had special significance. “This was a dream come true for me,” indicated the athlete who won three medals in swimming at the Special Olympics Quebec. Cynthia Thomas took the trouble to bring fresh strawberries from Ferme Hubert Sauvé. “He found them delicious,” she declared.
The Prime Minister also had the opportunity to chat with the Mayor of Salaberry-de-Valleyfield, Miguel Lemieux, and his fellow mayor from Saint-Louis-de-Gonzague, Yves Daoust. “He took the time to tell me that we have a very beautiful city,” noted Lemieux, “and I couldn’t help saying that I completely agreed with him. Whatever your political stripes, when the Prime Minister of Canada pays a visit to your city, the least you can do is be welcoming.”
The head of the Liberal Party also had a few warm words for businessman Marc Faubert from the Club de golf Saint-Anicet, who is expected to run for the liberals in the next federal election.
One small incident occurred towards the end of this 90 minutes visit when a woman interrupted by shouting angrily at the Prime Minister before she was escorted off site by security officers. Justin Trudeau continued on, unruffled, and ended his visit, departing in the black government cars that were waiting for him in the parking lot. He then drove to Vaudreuil-Dorion where local officials welcomed him to the Festival du cirque.
(Translated by Cathleen Johnston)