If you haven’t stopped to read the commemorative plaque that was installed in 2010 beside the impressive rocket on Route 243 in East Bolton, you might not know that the late local businessman, Jean-Charles (Charlie or J.C.) Labranche, got his inspiration to have his own rocket built after his trip to Cape Canaveral in 1964 where he got to admire the Apollo rocket. Labranche hired a local tradesman by the name of Laurent Côté to build the rocket with the idea that it would attract business to his garage and snack bar.

 

The rocket was made in 1965 with wood which was then covered in sheet metal. It was then installed in its current location, which was the property of Labranche’s business and his wife, Yvette Dodier’s personal residence at the time. They owned the property until 1974. Labranche died in 1995 and 10 years later his daughter Pierrette and her husband, Pierre St-Pierre, bought the property where they now live and operate a store called Depanneur Fusee J.C. It was then that Pierrette and Pierre undertook to restore the rocket to its original state. The rocket continues to be a well-known landmark and attracts the attention of visitors to the area 55 years later. Not to mention that it sure makes for an eye-catching sign for the depanneur.