24 FOCUS - NOVEMBER 2017 From the accompanying photo, you may recognize the smiling crossing guard who helps folks cross busy Queen St. at R. H. Cornish School. He’s had this post for two years now. Previously, Maurice said he was “a spare all over the place,” including Reach and Simcoe and 7A, for five years. Noting that the population of R. H. Cornish is 850 students and that there are 1,500 students at Port Perry High School, Maurice says he crosses 175 - 200 kids every day. Yes, there have been some close calls over the years, but no serious incidents. Maurice blames speeding and distracted driving. Now, there are 40 km per hour signs all along Queen St. in front of the school, including in the centre of the street in between the lanes, to alert drivers. “Eighty per cent of drivers are pretty good,” he commented. Educating people on safe crossing practices is part of Maurice’s job. He advises kids not to ride their bikes or scooters across the street, and tells parents not to walk across with little children perched up on their shoulders, because they could fall and get hurt. Everyone follows his rules, he added. “They are my responsibility.” Maurice’s ears are so well trained that he says he can tell what speed a car is travelling, going down the hill, just by the sound. One local crossing guard got hit and was rolled up on the hood of a car, he recalls. Police presence at school crossings is always welcome, and they do issue tickets for infractions. But Maurice does not approach his job with the fear of danger. He is “a positive thinker.” He’s on duty every school day for three and a half hours, from 8:25 a.m. to 9:25, 11:40 a.m. to 1:10 p.m., and from 3:20 until 4:20 p.m. – rain or snow or sunshine! Autumn is his favourite time of year, and he always looks forward to school resuming in the fall so he can see everyone again. Interestingly, one of Maurice’s daughters was a volunteer school crossing guard when she attended R. H. Cornish. Those were the days before adult crossing guards were hired by the municipality. “It was an honour for Lisa to be chosen for this job,” Maurice said. She wore a white belt while on duty, and won a three-day trip to Ottawa. Cold, windy, winter days are not his favourite for being outdoors, but Maurice just bundles up in layers, puts on his warm cap with the ear flaps, and his famous smile, and goes to work. He credits all of the fresh air he gets for his good health, and the fact that he hasn’t had a cold or flu bug for many years. He’s up at the crack of dawn, and out to Tim Horton’s or McDonalds for coffee. The students and the parents know him well, and often give him gift cards for these restaurants in appreciation for his loyal service as a crossing guard. Maurice Midgley (continued from page 23) HONESTY. INTEGRITY. FAIR PRICES. Low & Low Limited - CANADIAN INDEPENDENT - FUNERAL DIRECTORS SINCE 1860 www.lowandlow.ca Proudly Serving Port Perry, Uxbridge and Surrounding Area PORT PERRY CHAPEL 1763 Reach St., Port Perry 905.985.7331 UXBRIDGE CHAPEL 23 Main St. S., Uxbridge 905.852.3073 279 Queen St., Port Perry 905-985-2775 www.jesterscourt.ca 279 Queen St., Port Perry Every Tuesday during the winter. Call to book your reading. Avoid disappointment… BOOK YOUR CHRISTMAS PARTY NOW! BOOK BOOK Banquet & Party Facilities Available for up to 50 Check out our fresh and inspired options on our weekly feature menu! If you haven’t tried yet, you are missing out on savoury tastes!