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> Issue 60 > Page 24 - A Visit with Winston Ruck, Steelworker

Page 24 - A Visit with Winston Ruck, Steelworker

Published by Ronald Caplan on 1992/6/1 (271 reads)

the labour movement. He (could) remember the strike in '23 for example. (5ee Issue 22. CBM.) 1 was only born in '23. Frank, he remembered those Mounted Police chasing the people. That remained in his mind. And he wrote a book based on what he saw as a boy, to the steelworkers (Brief History of Local 1064 United Steelworkers of America and Its Achievements). He used to urge me all the time to come and attend the meetings, and so on and so forth. And finally in 1956 he came, along with others--"Winston, why don't you let your name stand for nomination, and run for the Grievance Committee, steward"--of the Gen? eral Yard Department. So I did, along with another good friend of mine named Johnny MacDonald, who's since passed on as well. So that's how I became interested in the union at the urging of Frank Smith. And the follow-up story to Frank Smith is that when I got elected to the presidency of the union in 1970, Frank was also elect? ed to financial secretary. Those were the two full-time positions in Local 1064. And the point is this, that if I had the right to select my financial secretary--if I had had that right--that would have been Frank Smith. It would have been Frank Smith with? out question. He was the person that I Colbourne Trophies • 1 539-4874 'Across from K-Mart off Welton St. COLBOURNE'S SPORTS & TROPHIEJ 20 MAPLE STREET, SYDNEY, N. S, 1. One of the largest selections of trophies Welton St. "' Atlantic Canada factory priced ' 2. Computerized engraving 3. We can silk screen your company logo 4. Special occasion plaques 5. Name tags - door signs (plastic or metal) 6. Ribbons and medals 7. Custom pins, badges, crests, certificates, etc 8. We order team jackets, caps, shirts. Car Lot 9.We imprint in shop lO.Giftw would most closely want to work with. I had a lot of confidence and faith in him. And I knew he was a very hon? est man, up? right man. So it was never any problem. None existed. 'Cause Frank never saw col? our. He never saw religion. All he saw was a human being. There's not very many peo? ple like that. We all have our prejudices to some extent. Frank was a man completely above that. He abhorred that sort of thing. And was quick to speak out against it--fearless, force? ful, truthful, honest. And there were others like him--Jim Ryan, who was the former president before I was, was also of the same ilk--interested in it from an early age. Jim Ryan was president of the local on a couple of occasions. He was a very good president--very able man. Again, fearless, straightforward, honest, very knowledgeable about the union and about the collective agreement. There was nobody, nobody that was the equal of Jim Ryan concerning knowledge of the collec? tive agreement. A lot of the clauses that are 'in the present collective agreement were authored by Jim Ryan--particularly with respect to seniority. Frank Smith Enjoy Seafood & Home-Cooked Meals in the atmosphere of a miner's home A "Taste of Nova Scotia" Restaurant Visit the MINERS' VILLAGE RESTAURANT OPEN DAILY June to September 12 NOON to 10 P.M. Located on the famous Miners' Museum site Quarry Point, Giace Bay BIA 5T8 (902)849-1788 O Able men. Cecil Palmer was the chairman of the General Yard Grievance Committee at the time I was elected. And he served in that position over 30 years. Successive years. Another able, fearless, thoughtful, honest individual. I was fortunate to have had those people as teachers. And when I got on the General Yard Committee I saw how they acted. And their behaviour was exem? plary. They believed in an hon? est day's work--hear me, what I'm saying--for an honest day's pay. Again, you can't say that about everybody. But they were in a position of leadership as far as the union was concerned. And they acted it out. There were no shortcuts. If you had legitimate rights, they would fight tooth and nail to see that you attained those rights. And
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