Lindor Reynolds

  • I'll miss you while I'm fighting monsters

    Sometimes, life is a capricious old whore. In late June, I celebrated my 55th birthday with friends, laughing, telling stories and feeling grateful for a life well-lived. My husband and I were preparing for a much-anticipated European vacation. A week later, I was diagnosed with brain cancer.
  • Tea for masses to fight cancer

    Forget about Tea for Two. Ida Albo is hoping to pour tea for 1,500 this fall. Albo, the co-owner of the Fort Garry Hotel, is chairwoman of the Guardian Angels committee, a group that raises funds for the CancerCare Manitoba Foundation. This year, she and her committee decided, with good reason, well-heeled Winnipeggers are tired of attending expensive fundraising dinners.
  • Descriptions deceptively difficult to do

    Last week, I learned if I ever sit down with a police artist to describe a suspect, the resulting sketch will show a stick figure with a balloon head. Wednesday night, my husband and I were driving downtown to a Winnipeg Jazz Festival concert. We'd watched two cars hotdogging down Pembina Highway and onto Donald Street. One driver stepped on the brakes just as the other moved in swiftly and too close behind him. "Idiots," I said to my husband.
  • War of the Womb: North Dakota is the new abortion battleground.

    FARGO, N.D.: In the 1970s and 1980s, Winnipeg women seeking safe and legal abortions often travelled to North Dakota for the procedure. An underground railroad system was in place, transporting pregnant women across the border. There were two state physicians known to offer abortions in their offices and, rather than go through questioning by a panel of doctors to determine if their physical or mental well-being was threatened by the pregnancy (a requirement before an abortion could be performed at a Manitoba hospital) some women headed south.
  • Special-needs swimming lessons lend confidence

    Dianne Rabichuk can't say enough nice things about Cameron Krisko. "I idolize him," says Rabichuk. "He's fantastic and the work he's doing makes such a difference. I adore him like there's no tomorrow."
  • At 55, I'm wise to what's real in life

    I turn 55 this week. I'd never considered the possibility of the palindrome or, if I had, I attached the word "Freedom" before the numbers. When I was 55, I'd be grey-haired and sitting on a dock with my handsome husband in his khaki Dockers and boat shoes. We'd be retired and there'd be adorable grandchildren to visit when we returned from our latest adventure, which would involve hiking or visiting an exotic country or doing something else hearty and not at all typical of senior citizens.
  • Immobilizer program too cosy, some charge

    A national organization dedicated to harmonizing the Canadian vehicle-inspection process says Manitoba Public Insurance is "defrauding" vehicle owners because its immobilizer program doesn't cover all the products on the market. "I think they're very much in bed with the two distributors," says Wayne McAlpine, a consultant with the Central Automotive Inspection Records and Standards Services Corp. (CAIRSS). "It's 100 per cent a conflict of interest."
  • Memories, tributes for Morgentaler

    Henry Morgentaler was remembered as a kind and compassionate man and "a hero for all Canadian women" at an invitation-only memorial service Friday night. More than 100 women and a scattering of men filled the Robert H. Steen Community Centre to listen to tributes to the abortion-rights crusader, who died May 29. Security was hired in case anti-abortion protesters got wind of the event. There was no trouble.
  • Immobilizer problems resonate

    The story of Winnipegger Eugene Skotniczy, who had his immobilizer removed from his truck because he blamed it for constant stalling problems, touched a nerve with readers this weekend. MPI cancelled his insurance after he told them what he'd done. Turns out he isn't the only taxpayer having immobilizer problems.
  • An over-honest lawbreaker?

    Eugene Skotniczy says Manitoba Public Insurance is punishing him for his honesty. MPI says he's paying the price for breaking the law. In 2004, Skotniczy bought a 2002 Silverado truck. When MPI released its 2007 Most At Risk list of vehicles most likely to be stolen, his truck was on it. There were 47,000 vehicles on that first list, with another 50,000 added the next year.
  • Marriage proposal was door prize

    Audience members at a Saturday night concert were treated to more than music when a member of the Rainbow Harmony Project choir surprised his long-term partner with a marriage proposal. Bryce Weedmark, 26, had been plotting the stealth proposal to Scott Andrew, 30, for months. The men, who have been dating for 21/2 years, had talked vaguely about getting married and having children some day. Andrew, who was celebrating his birthday Saturday night, had no idea he'd end the evening with a ring on his finger.
  • Giving women freedom is Morgentaler's legacy

    It was an accident that Suzanne Newman went to work for Dr. Henry Morgentaler. It was 1983. Morgentaler's abortion clinic had just opened. She was a middle-class stay-at-home mother of four out for a walk with her two youngest children. They happened upon a kerfuffle outside the Corydon Avenue clinic. She saw protesters shouting and blocking the entrance to the clinic.
  • LGBT community reflects as Pride rises

    The president of Pride Winnipeg says gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender communities in Manitoba and across Canada have made tremendous strides toward acceptance and inclusion. But Jonathan Niemczak says it would be foolish to become complacent or believe all the work is done. "It's been a long fight," says Niemczak, 25. "You have to look at it in different phases. We've gained a lot of same-sex rights. Look at adoption, marriage, blood donations."
  • A new mom's booze-fuelled hell

    Jowita Bydlowska gets defensive early on in our telephone interview. "It sounds like you've already written your story," she snaps when I ask her if she feels guilty that she drank to oblivion during the first year of her son's life. You wrote a book called Drunk Mother, I reply. You opened the door. I walked through.
  • Mount Carmel Clinic: An oasis of acceptance in a judgmental world

    There's a red, heart-shaped platter of condoms on the Mount Carmel Clinic receptionist's desk. That's a second clue this is no ordinary medical centre. The first is its location on north Main Street, just beyond the Higgins Avenue underpass. This is an area of impoverishment and struggle. A state-of-the-art medical facility is an oasis on the Main Street strip, a place where North End residents can see doctors, dentists and social workers. Their prescriptions are filled on-site. Children attend a licensed daycare. New Canadians learn about the laws and social customs of their chosen home in their own language. People traumatized by war receive counselling. Homeless clients aren't hampered by a lack of a mailing address.
  • Jolie's mastectomy choice a game-changer

    Angelina Jolie's announcement she'd undergone a preventive double mastectomy may revolutionize how we view women's health and the objectification of our bodies. Jolie is a sex symbol, and those Lara Croft breasts were a part of her appeal. If you're the sort to reduce women to just their lady parts, Jolie offered plenty to talk about. One smarmy website set up a memorial page to Jolie's breasts shortly after her New York Times essay went online.
  • She leads an underwear revolution for African girls

    Rachel Starkey has the enthusiasm of a travelling evangelist when she talks about her African-based textiles company. "We're part of something. It's the next Google in terms of women in emerging worlds," says the Calgary native. "Transformation Textiles is the last thing I think about when I go to sleep and the first thing I think about in the morning," she says. "We have developed an incredible product that is revolutionizing girls in Africa."
  • Twins are theirs, but province doesn't agree

    New parents Mike Olson and Lisa Seel say they're trapped in a bureaucratic nightmare, trying to get the Province of Manitoba to recognize they are the parents of their own infant twins, Kai and Keenan. "It's so silly and so frustrating," says Olson. "We've been through so much already."
  • Happily selling shoes at age 89

    Leonard Harris, 89, still drives to work downtown from his North End home three times a week. He turns 90 in October and figures he may be Canada's oldest shoe salesman. He started working at Canadian Footwear when he was 73. Back then, he was a full-time employee. When he asked co-owner Brian Scharfstein for a job, he was told to come in on Saturdays and act as a greeter.
  • Transcontinental cyclist pedals for kids

    Arvid Loewen, a 56-year-old grandfather of six, is a devoted cyclist training for a challenge that will change lives. In June, the North Kildonan man will tackle the Race Across America, a 5,000-kilometre cycling ultra-marathon that is 50 per cent longer than the Tour de France and requires competitors to finish faster than the better-known race. They start in Oceanside, Calif., and, if they finish, end in Annapolis, Md., no more than 12 days later.
  • Unsung centre cares for families

    Cindy Little was 36 and a mother of two when her husband, Chris, died. A diabetic, he'd developed a slight infection and gone to bed to nap. When she came to wake him, holding their daughter, he was blue. An autopsy showed his cause of death was pulmonary heart disease. Her life crumpled. Their son, Zachary, was four. Holly was two.
  • Goodbye, Susan; a privilege to know you

    Susan Griffiths dies today. The Winnipeg woman who chose to be a public face in Canada's divisive assisted-suicide debate will end her life in a Swiss clinic. Surrounded by her family, the 72-year-old will drink from a glass of water mixed with pentobarbital. She'll quickly fall asleep, lapse into a coma and die when her respiratory system is paralyzed. It's a heartbreaking end for a vivacious, passionate woman who leaves behind a devoted family and a wide circle of friends. But it is Susan's choice, one she made when diagnosed with multiple system atrophy, a relentless brain disease with no cure or treatment. Rather than face the inevitable loss of bodily functions and never-ending pain, she decided to die.
  • Slain tot wasn't killer's only victim, probe told

    Phoenix Sinclair was just one of Karl Wesley McKay's victims, the inquiry into the child's death heard Monday. The murderer's ex-partner and two sons testified his actions damaged them and destroyed their family. The trio, known as Doe #1, Doe #2, and Doe #3 due to a publication ban, testified remotely. Now 20 and 22 years old, respectively, they recalled life with McKay as violent and miserable. The mother, Doe #3, was in tears when she described how McKay's abuse and the slaying affected her and the boys.
  • Sorry for senior's dangerous fall

    The family of a 93-year-old man toppled out of his wheelchair by a careless Handi-Transit driver last week has accepted an apology from the city-run transportation company. Ernest Chenier was leaving a medical clinic when the driver accidentally bumped a curb with the Second World War veteran's wheelchair. A city spokeswoman says when "the driver's foot accidentally slipped off the wheelchair when lowering the chair off the curb, the registrant (Chenier) fell out of the chair."
  • Alison, you let fear rule instincts

    Put yourself in Alison Kakewash's shoes. You've been raised to believe your uncle, Wes McKay, is "wicked." Your mom tells you to keep your distance, that he raped someone once. You've seen him hurt your cousin. As you testified at the Phoenix Sinclair inquiry Thursday morning, he was the bogeyman of your childhood.

About Lindor Reynolds

National Newspaper Award winner Lindor Reynolds began work at the Free Press as a 17-year-old proofreader. It was a rough introduction to the news business.

Many years later, armed with a university education and a portfolio of published work, she was hired as a Free Press columnist. During her 20-plus years on the job she has written for every section in the paper, with the exception of Business. She’ll get around to them some day.

Lindor has received considerable recognition for her writing. Her awards include the Will Rogers Humanitarian Award, the National Society of Newspaper Columnists’ general interest award and the North American Travel Journalists Association top prize.
Her work on Internet luring led to an amendment to the Criminal Code of Canada and her coverage of the child welfare system prompted a change to Manitoba Child and Family Services Act to make the safety of children paramount.

She has earned three citations of merit for the Michener Award for Meritorious Public Service in Journalism and has been awarded a Distinguished Alumni commendation from the University of Winnipeg. Lindor was also named a YMCA/YWCA  Woman of Distinction.

She is married with four daughters. If her house was on fire and the kids and dog were safe, she’d grab her passport.
 
lindor.reynolds@freepress.mb.ca

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