BY CHRIS FAULKNOR, PUBLISHER
Dr. Gordon Lambie, the man behind the scenes for so many Boyne Area causes, died on Aug. 15.
Beginning his long-term mission to make the world a better place, Lambie began by serving his country through the United States Army as part of the 22nd Regimental Combat Unit in World War II.
Prior to his time in Boyne City, Lambie worked in education as a teacher, coach, superintendent, taught at the college level, and even served on the Central Michigan University Board of Trustees.
Upon discovering that someone attended college there, his running joke was, “I might have signed your diploma.”
Lambie was a member of the Boyne Valley Lions Club and a Melvin Jones Fellow, one of Lionism’s highest honors.
“He was a wonderful man. He was on top of everything and organized a lot of things and helped a lot of people out behind the scenes. He will be missed by a lot of people,” said Lion Eleanor Sutliff.
Taking over the last several years of the White Cane drive, Lambie raised several thousand dollars in the past year alone.
“I met Gordon and his wife Joyce through my wife Jody at a Lion’s function about 25 years ago,” said Mark Kowalske. “As I grew to get to know Gordon I grew to have a tremendous respect for his drive to do better and make better. He had Old School values and it was not a dirty word. It’s what made our Country the best in the world. He gave all he could to everyone he knew up to the very end, especially Boyne City. Thank-you Gordon for being my friend.”
Additionally, he was active in the Boyne City Eagles Club, often stopping for lunch and heading up projects.
“A lot of people don’t realize everything Gordon did for the community,” said Eagles Past President Bruce Lawson.
Lawson refers to Lambie’s efforts to bolster and improve the Boyne City War Memorial in Veterans Memorial Park, including setting flag-adorned donation canisters throughout town.
“He was a great supporter for veterans and donated a lot of money and helped us secure funds for various things in the War Memorial,” said Retired Sheriff George T. Lasater. “Whenever I would go to him with a project, he was enthusiastic about helping. He had a great love for veterans.”
“He was just a community oriented person. He loved the community, and was willing to do whatever was necessary to help better the Boyne City area,” Lasater added.
Lambie’s involvement with other local causes was also well-known, including the Boyne Area Community Christmas Project.
“Gordon always did the Great Lakes Energy grants for the Boyne Area Community Christmas,” said Chairperson Ruth Witenski. “He also did stockings for the handicapped kids—121 stockings—and he made sure that every single one had a pair of socks and an apple.”
“Before he died, he asked if I’d make sure that part of his legacy lives on,” she added.
A wide variety of projects tackled by Lambie included:
In July of 2011, Harry Ahlborn returned from the hospital requiring a ramp to access his house.
Gordon Lambie secured the help of the Lions Club and several other friends and, together, they purchased materials and built a ramp for Ahlborn.
In 2011, Gordon Lambie chaired the inaugural Veterans Day America Sings performance, bringing performers from all over the state for a donation-only show dedicated to the local veterans, and raising money for the War Memorial.
In 2013, it came to Gordon Lambie’s attention that there is a homeless population in the Boyne Area.
To address the problem, he organized a summit at the Boyne City First Presbyterian Church, which included the superintendent of schools, church leaders, city officials, and heads of local charities to better understand the problem and to foster cooperation in working to solve it.