When you’re this Aurora they call you Mr.

Ron Wallace’s passing during this pandemic was far too quiet for a man who was such a vocal advocate for our town.

My November 29th 2011 post focused on Ron’s retirement from The Auroran. At that point Ron wanting things to carry on without him, and likely due to the great impression he made on his staff they have.

Not afraid of taking his readers into the corners, which likely stemmed from his hockey days Ron’s grit was one of the qualities I admired about him the most.

More than his column I think I miss the RUMOURS AND RUMBLINGS section of the Auroran. Without that injection of random tidbits and events from decades ago there seems to be less connectivity between the readership and Aurora’s past. The Time Machine columns that have taken its place are to contrived, too long and fail to dig into the short but sweet off the radar aspects of Aurora’s past the way Ron could. It needs to return.

Around December of 2010 I approached Ron with an idea for a column that was different in form from what he was offering. I expected him to flat out refuse but I sweetened the deal by agreeing to pay him for the space to write which I think he enjoyed coming from an industry where the roles were reversed. The catch was it would be a penny a word and I would only write 100 of them every two weeks. He agreed and so began a journey of writing my column 100 Watts for a couple years. I’d like to believe this financial gain helped him into early retirement.

Seriously though Ron was a most enjoyable editor to write for. We bonded over having daughters, being from the same alumni and most assuredly sharing utter distaste for how the 2006-2010 council conducted itself under the MorMac regime. Even through that disgraceful period of Aurora’s history Ron was able to see a light at the end of the tunnel and his optimism showed through the pages of his paper.

There will never be another “Mr. Aurora”, but I’m sure there are more Aurorans than I can count that will keep Ron’s sprit alive, something we need now more than ever.

Thanks for lighting the way.

Watts on your mind?

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