Beach Memories: The time is now to honour Beacher Norman Jewison with a plaque

Norman Jewison, who grew up in the Beach, directs Denzel Washington in a scene from the 1999 movie The Hurricane.

By GENE DOMAGALA

It is great to have all these different types of plaques about people, places and public events in our community.

But where is the plaque for one of the world’s greatest film directors, Norman Jewison? He was born in the Beach and remains a proud Canadian.

Growing up, Jewison attended Kew Beach school and Malvern Collegiate.

There have been several attempts by organizations including The Beach and East Toronto Historical Society and other individuals to have a plaque honouring this great director and Canadian.

When the Beach held Norman Jewison Day, hosted by Community Centre 55 about 20 years ago, Jewison spent all day making appearances and spoke a capacity crowd at the Fox Theatre where he showed one of his films.

There was also a reception for him at the Balmy Beach Club. I and a few others had the honour and pleasure of showing Jewison around some of his old neighbourhood haunts that day.

He always had a special affinity with the Beach and was proud of his home base. I have been asked many times, especially on my walks, where is the plaque for Norman Jewison in the Beach?

As he approaches his 95th birthday on July 21, I find it disturbing that there is not a plaque for him near Kippendavie Avenue and Queen Street East.

If this was the United States, or other countries, I’m sure a plaque would have been put where Norman Jewison grew up to honour him.

What are the reasons why there is not one? I wish I knew.

Let’s do the right thing and get this done as soon as possible.

I have been taken to task by so many people on this, as if I were somehow to blame. I say let us get this done now.

As always, your comments are welcome.


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