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Greater Sudbury says goodbye to city councillor Gerry Montpellier

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Family and friends of Germain “Gerry” Montpellier along with members of the community he served gathered on Saturday to say goodbye, one last time at Paroisse St. Joseph in Chelmsford.

Greater Sudbury firefighters escorting Gerry Montpellier’s wife, Denise, and son, John, as they entered Paroisse St. Joseph in Chelmsford for Gerry's funeral. (Supplied/Ward 7 Coun. Natalie Labbee)Fire trucks lead the procession on Feb. 24 with Greater Sudbury firefighters escorting Montpellier’s wife, Denise, and son, John, as they entered the church.

Montpellier died at Health Sciences North on Feb. 21 at the age of 69.

Montpellier served on Greater Sudbury’s city council since 2014 and was often referred to as a pillar of his community. Locals who attended the service said he will be remembered for his advocacy for the Ward 3 community.

Montpellier’s nephew and godson, Patrick Yasko, delivered his eulogy to the hundreds in attendance at the church. He described Montpellier as not only his godfather but a godfather to many car shows in the region and beyond – calling him a funny and caring man.

Bishop Robert Bourgon delivered Montpellier’s sermon and called “Gerry” a lifelong friend and a man of faith.

The front of the memorial cards for the late Greater Sudbury Ward 3 Coun. Gerry Montpellier. (Supplied)The councillor’s obituary described Montpellier as an “entrepreneur, automotive enthusiast, proud councillor of Ward 3, loving husband and father.”

“His passion for motorsports began at a young age when watching his uncles race their snowmobiles. Heavily involved in car shows and numerous motorsports, Gerry led a fulfilling career as a classic car and motorcycle appraiser, marine surveyor and custom painter,” reads the obituary.

“While volunteering his time as auctioneer to many community groups and charities, he also devoted his time on city council, acting as a strong voice for the community.”

Montpellier’s family said he had been contending with health issues in recent months. The councillor had surprised many locals by attending the Jan. 16 city council meeting virtually from his hospital bed after attending meetings in person in council chambers at the height of the pandemic and speaking out against the council chambers being closed.

Mayor Paul Lefebvre and city council have invited all residents of Greater Sudbury to sign a book of condolences for the family of the late Ward 3 Coun. Gerry Montpellier.

“We will never forget Councillor Montpellier’s steadfast genuine commitment to our community,” said Mayor Lefebvre, in a news release.

“He touched the lives of so many, and I encourage residents to share their condolences and memories with his family and friends, to bring them some comfort in their time of loss.”

Residents can sign the book of condolences between Feb. 28 and March 22 at the following locations:

  • Tom Davies Square – One Stop Services, 200 Brady St., Sudbury.
  • Chelmsford Community Centre and Arena, 215 Edward Ave., Chelmsford
  • Dowling Public Library and Citizen Service Centre, 79 Main St. W., Dowling
  • Levack/Onaping Public Library, 1 Hillside Ave., Onaping

An online book of condolences is also available here for those who wish to send messages or submit photos.

This has been a difficult month for Greater Sudbury city council as Ward 2 Coun. Michael Vagnini was located deceased on Feb. 13 after being reported missing by his family at the end of January.

Flowers placed on the Ward 3 seat in Greater Sudbury Council Chambers on Feb. 21, 2024. (Supplied/Paul Lefebvre)“It is heartbreaking and unfathomable that we should find ourselves mourning Gerry even as we continue to grieve the late Councillor Michael Vagnini,” said Lefebvre in a social media post on the day of Montpellier’s passing.

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