The Honorable R. John Efford (January 6, 1944 – January 2, 2022)
He was Port de Grave through and through.
Independent to the core.
John knew when to collaborate and cooperate but he never lost sight of the fierce independence that drove the community of Port de Grave.
While he carried the mantle of provincial and federal governments, he knew that the people of his place had their own way of doing things, whether through the Harbour Authority, the Heritage Society, the communities of faith and their churches, or other groups. He found ways to remember that as he steered and supported investments in the community.
Salt water in his blood.
John always knew where he came from. His touchstones were this place, the people who live here and those who came before him. Those who shaped Port de Grave’s survival and its prosperity.
The fishery has always been the lifeblood and backbone of this place, and he knew that Port de Grave was the epitome of communities that cling to the rock, on the edge of rich seafood resources. From Hibbs Hole to the Grand Banks, he instinctively knew how fishers and their families could survive and thrive.
He loved the saltwater. He knew our water’s edge and the fishing grounds are just as important as the land where we built our homes. He loved being on the water in his boats.
Driven by enterprise.
As a salesperson who broke Canadian records in dry goods, and a business owner, he knew the essence of enterprise. He knew that customers, real people, one by one, shaped success. He was realistic and entrepreneurial, knowing when and where there was opportunity.
Like our fishing families, who must quickly adapt to changing demands for seafood, and the best resource available at the time, he knew to fish where the fish were.
He is the essence of those of us from Port de Grave and the Peninsula.
Curious with that razor wit.
As we close out this Christmas Season, be it known January 6th, John’s birthday, we celebrate our heritage together with John’s colorful light and joyful sound forever in our hearts.
On John’s birthday Thursday, January 6th the family will ring the bell at St. Mark’s Heritage church at 5pm in memory of John and his contribution to his community of birth – Port de Grave. We ask that you stay in your vehicle if you would like to join the family during this act of remembrance.