Raymond Poitras, who has died at the age of 89, was the first town manager when the Town of Brome Lake was formed in 1971. He stayed in the job for almost 20 years, retiring in early 1990.
“Raymond ran everything in the town. He was the clerk, the accountant, he did it all as there wasn’t a large staff then,” said Gilles Decelles, whose first term as mayor ran from 1987 to 1991. “He was a hard worker, and he and mayor Homer Blackwood trusted each other and worked well as a team.”
Homer Blackwood was the mayor for all of Raymond Poitras’ time as town manager, except for the three years with Gilles Decelles.
Raymond Poitras was born in Quebec City and attended École des Hautes Études Commerciales (HEC). After working in Toronto and Quebec City, in 1950 he became the Town Manager in Schefferville, a newly built mining town in Northern Quebec. He moved to Knowlton in 1971 to take up his new duties. He lived in town and he and his wife Thérèse Blanchet, who he married in 1957, raised their family – Chantal, Ann, and Claire – on Stockwell Road.
Mr. Poitras was in charge when new water and sewage services were installed in town. His daughter Claire, a resident of Knowlton, says her father would take her on his Saturday morning tours, among other things to check the levels of the town reservoirs.
Raymond was a fun loving man. In her eulogy of her father, Claire Poitras spoke of that and how he was a devoted family man, taking his wife and daughters on camping trips, something he continued to do in his retirement.
Raymond Poitras died on May 9th. He is survived by his wife Thérèse, his daughters Chantal, Ann and Claire, four grandchildren and one great-grandchild.