It was a near-speechless Christine Carpenter who accepted the Bill Gibson Memorial Award on Friday night at the Rainy River Federation of Agriculture’s annual spring dinner and dance in the Barwick Hall.
Carpenter wasn’t any more talkative when contacted by the Times yesterday.
“It was a big surprise and we were very flattered,” she said, noting her husband, Andrew (if could come to the phone right now, she remarked) probably would say the same thing.
The Carpenters, who have 60 head of cattle in Arbor Vitae, have been involved with groups ranging from the local cattlemen’s association to 4-H. Farming has been an important aspect in their lives.
So important, in fact, that it even will take precedence over RRFA spring dinners.
“I’m sorry Andrew wasn’t here,” Carpenter told those on hand for the RRFA dinner as she accepted the prestigious award. “We had a heifer who calved and he didn’t want to leave her alone.”
The Bill Gibson Memorial is given by the RRFA to an individual or group who have demonstrated outstanding service in their community as a volunteer.
“There is no more important work an individual can do but help their communities and be a volunteer,” said RRFA president Kim Desserre.
“Bill did not volunteer for recognition or reward. Bill volunteered because he was brought up to believe he had a duty to his community,” she continued.
“[The Carpenters] have both been very active in local associations,” Desserre said, noting they volunteered in the same spirit Gibson did.
“Their door is always open and the coffee is always on. Just don’t expect to leave their yard in less than five minutes,” she laughed.