East Yorkers remember personal gifts in Ford’s legacy

Grace Guarnieri never really knew Rob Ford, but she says he still left a lasting impression on her. In a phone conversation, some time ago, the owner of Second Elegance on Pape Avenue mentioned to the then mayor that her father was ill. Subsequently, Ford phoned back to ask if there was anything he could do.

“That’s epic. Who remembers that?” Guarnieri said. “I mean, just that act was consolation enough,” she said. “It was just him doing what he loved to do.”

East York legionnaire recalls wartime as merchant mariner

In 1944, William O’Leary lied about his age and enlisted as a galley boy in the Merchant Marine. He was 15 years old. “I’ve sailed all over the world,” said O’Leary, who embarked from Cape Breton, Nova Scotia, on a ship carrying food, ammunitions and coal to Allied forces at the end of the Second World War. En route to Odessa, Russia, his ship travelled through the North Atlantic, a playground, he said, for German U-boats that were notorious for picking off slow convoys of ships heading into and out of Canada.