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Mapleton creates citizen of the year award named after beloved grocery store worker

'I would call him one of Mapleton's favourite citizens:' says Coun. Marlene Ottens
John Ford was known as a constant presence at the grocery store in Drayton and had a knack for remembering people's names and birthdays.

MAPLETON – The Township of Mapleton has created a citizen of the year award named after a beloved community who died last month. 

At a recent council meeting, Mapleton council approved creating the John Ford citizen of the year award. 

Ford was well known as an employee at the Drayton Freshmart for 36 years who had a knack for remembering people and things about them such as their birthdays. He died in March at 64 years old. 

Coun. Marlene Ottens put forward the motion to create the John Ford citizen of the year award, noting the town has an award for senior of the year but not a more general one.

“I would call him one of Mapleton’s favourite citizens,” Ottens said, adding the award can be for anyone of any age who encompasses the “spirit of generosity that John showed.”

She said she had asked Ford’s family and they are in favour of this and would like to be involved in picking the recipient. 

Mayor Gregg Davidson said he thought the award is an excellent idea and added he had been asked about a month ago if the township had a citizen of the year award.

“I can’t think of another person to name it after better than John Ford,” Davidson said. 

The motion to create the award was passed unanimously.

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Keegan Kozolanka

About the Author: Keegan Kozolanka

Keegan Kozolanka is a general assignment reporter for EloraFergusToday, covering Wellington County. Keegan has been working with Village Media for more than two years and helped launch EloraFergusToday in 2021.
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