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Mayor and alderman shovel out snowed-in resident

By: Sara Wilson

  |  Posted: Thursday, Dec 12, 2013 10:33 am

Mayor Peter Brown and Alderman Allan Hunter helped shovel out Graham Gariepy's car after Dec. 2 and 3 massive snow storm.
Mayor Peter Brown and Alderman Allan Hunter helped shovel out Graham Gariepy's car after Dec. 2 and 3 massive snow storm.
Graham Gariepy/For Rocky View Publishing

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It was a storm to remember, as streets were blanketed with 20 centimetres of snow and drifts piled high as 10 feet but for one resident, the storm showed the true spirit of Airdronians and what it means to be a publicly-elected official.

Graham Gariepy, a Woodside Boulevard resident, was snowed in – as many residents in Airdrie were – on Dec. 3 and he decided to ask for help.

“I tweeted Peter Brown on Dec. 3 because our roads were still impassable,” Gariepy said. “I live on a bus route and I was stuck for a day-and-a-half, even my 4x4 couldn’t get out.”

It didn’t take long for the mayor to respond via social media to Gariepy’s request for help, Brown asked for his address and was “there in 20 to 30 minutes.”

Brown arrived with fellow Alderman Allan Hunter, who helped Brown clear Gariepy’s driveway.

“It was awesome, I figured he would take one pass, but he and Allan Hunter did the whole street,” he said.

“I did vote for (Hunter), I kept saying I knew I voted for him for a reason, I would not hesitate to vote Mayor Brown or Aldermen Hunter next time around.”

Gariepy said he was so impressed with the mayor’s dedication to help Airdronians, that he felt it appropriate to tell fellow residents.

“The mayor did ask me not to tell anyone that he was out, I am sure because there will be a lot of negative comments, ‘why not my street’ kind of things and people will try to give Peter negative comments when he should be praised,” he explained.

“However, Airdrie residents need to know that the mayor was not just sitting at home, he was out with the snow fighters cleaning streets, as I am sure I am not the only one who had theirs done by Peter.”

Brown, reluctant to speak about his involvement, praised all the residents who stepped up to the plate to help their neighbours and fellow residents clear snow and help return life to normal.

“More than anything else, everyone did a great job helping their neighbours out,” Brown said.

“There was so many people, it was incredible to watch the community to see them come together.”

Gariepy also praised the efforts of City staff for their work clearing the streets of Airdrie.

“This isn’t just about the mayor coming out to help this is more about all of the residents who helped push out neighbours, friends, and strangers, residents who helped shovel or used their snow blower to get others out,” he said.

“With the crazy drifts, the fast blowing snow, it was impossible to keep clean. Our snow fighters need a big thank you from all Airdrie residents, if it was not for them many of our major roads, school zone, bus routes would still be closed, but the actions of the mayor set a high standard of our local government.”

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