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News Update


Letter from the Editor - “Memories” by Dave Harmer

November 17, 2020

Memories flooded back in September when I read John Myers’ story of his 1960 bike trip to Heidelberg, Germany. The similarities with my own experience in almost the same year in that same part of Europe are fascinating. My first ever journey outside England was part of a school trip which became the forerunner of many enjoyable personal and business visits to Europe, Scandinavia and other more distant parts of the world.

Like John, we left London by train to Dover and then boarded what looked from dockside to be a fairly substantial cross-channel ferry. Unlike his experience on that particular 4 hour crossing, shortly after leaving port we ran into a force nine gale and that "substantial" ferry was tossed around like a cork by waves which towered above us, breaking above the bow repeatedly. Like John, I am not a very good sailor and tried (and failed) to appear confident despite wondering whether we were ever going to make it. The captain charted a quick dash across the English Channel before hugging the French coast and we limped into Ostend, Belgium after 9 hours on board.

We must have followed some of the same route, albeit by bus. First to Bruges, then to Terneuzen in Holland where we stayed the night. The next day we motored first by The Hague and down through Düsseldorf, Cologne and Koblenz before ending up in Bacharach am Rhein where we stayed for 10 days. I remember the hotel was right beside both the main Rhine railway, highway and river and our hotel literally shook as trains rushed past  We were woken each morning by barges hooting on the Rhine. We visited wineries for wine tasting and spent time in Koblenz, Wiesbaden and Heidelberg before returning through Luxembourg and Brussels to Ostend and finally home. 

Bringing back such memories to our network is a large part of what we are about. We are linked because of an employment relationship with BMO before retirement. However, with a large number of members with such a wide variety of experiences both within and outside the bank, it is no surprise that your individual stories can hold our attention. 

During this pandemic with all its restrictions on activities and luncheons, newsletters and reports from the various BMO retiree groups have, of necessity, become abbreviated. We are, therefore, unable to bring you news and photographs about the many now cancelled regular social and recreational activities normally enjoyed by our members across the country. Although our network continues to offer the way to connect with and check up on friends and old colleagues, stories and articles become an even more substantial part of our website.

So, if you have a story or even personal photographs you can share, there is no time like the present to do so.  Please contact us at 

In the meantime, please stay safe and well.

Dave Harmer, Editor

"Photo: White Cliffs of Dover”


“Stepping Out on 3 Continents” - “Bank of Montreal and its NATO Branches” - by Joan Mesic, Senior Correspondent

November 2, 2020

This is our 4th Instalment and a continuance of our series on, “Stepping Out on 3 Continents”, and BMO’s international branches, offices and subsidiaries. (The 3rd Instalment is in our 2020 Archives, April 13, 2020 as well as other related articles.)

BMO Corporate Archives have generously provided us with the following article from the “B of M Staff Magazine”, October 1959. The article entitled, “My Bank” - With NATO Forces in Europe”, was written by Jim Gilmour, who was Manager, Bank of Montreal Soest, Germany with the help of other Canadian Army authorities. The article is a snapshot of the world after WWII when the North Atlantic Treaty Organization was created (NATO). NATO was formed 71 years ago on August 4, 1949 with the signing of the Washington Treaty. NATO is a security alliance of 30 countries from North America and Europe. *Its fundamental goal is to safeguard the Allies’ freedom and security by political and military means. Article 5 of the Treaty provides if a NATO Ally is the victim of an armed attack, each and every other member of the Alliance will consider this act of violence as an armed attack against all members and will take the actions it deems necessary to assist the Ally attacked.*

With the formation of NATO, Bank of Montreal established 8 branches in Germany to service The Royal Canadian Airforce and the Canadian Army. To read more about this significant endeavour by the bank in the aforementioned article, Click Here 

(* = from the internet)

“Material and images are the property of BMO Financial Group's Corporate Archives. No part of the material or photographs may be reproduced, copied, modified or adapted, without the prior written consent of the Corporate Archives. If you have any comments regarding this story, please contact the BMO Cyber Pensioners News team at We look forward to hearing from you."


Northern Alberta Newsletter - October 2020

October 21, 2020

An abbreviated version of Northern Alberta BOMPA quarterly Newsletter is now available.

We are still searching for someone to replace Ted White as Secretary. This involves recording the Minutes of the quarterly Executive meetings. Also, Donna Brausen has resigned from the Social Chair position after many years. Although there are no social activities planned until the pandemic is resolved, we do need to fill the position. It could even be filled by two "co-chairs" to spread the work. 

Wear a mask, social distance and take care,

Go to the Association Newsletters webpage to read the latest issue. 

Thanks to Bill Kilgour for sharing.


“To Heidelberg in 1960” by John Myers, Chicago, Illinois

September 26, 2020

John Myers, Chicago, Illinois has shared with us an interesting story about one of his adventures before he entered university. A story which we believe many of our members might relate to when one is between secondary school and entering higher academic studies, i.e., university or college.

To read, "To Heidelberg in 1960" , please CLICK HERE.

If you have any comments regarding this story, please contact the BMO Cyber Pensioners News team at We look forward to hearing from you.



Letter to the Editor - “Reflections of Working at a New BMO Branch, Lawrence & Markham, Scarborough, Ontario” 

September 20, 2020

We recently received a letter from Hazel Wheatley, Niagara Falls, Ontario and are pleased to share it with you.

"I am attaching a flyer, “The True Way to Bank” which was created by BMO to market their new branch opening, Lawrence and Markham Branch, Scarborough, Ontario in 1972.

I helped to open the branch and at that time I was a Savings Clerk. I was Hazel Pilon then. We gave the flyer out to our customers in the branch and distributed them in the neighbourhood. I kept one of the flyers as a souvenir of my time  there. I had many responsibilities which included organizing an Open House to introduce BMO’s banking services, our staff as well as the Area Manager and SVP to the community. As part of our business building efforts we also introduced ourselves to the employees of the Big Boy Restaurant which was next door to us. Every customer was new and required lengthy introductions to our banking services, etc., and setting each one up was interesting and took time. In addition to the initial work involved with new customers and business building, I had other administration responsibilities. I had to set up our passwords for our computers, order a brand new batch of cash and set up cash for the new Teller, create job descriptions for the employees and ensure all Policies and Procedures were filed and up to date. I also was the liaison between the branch and Organization and Methods. As we were a small staff of four, we had to wear many hats which made for a very busy day as well as a rewarding one. I worked at this branch for about one year and then I was transferred and received a promotion to boot!

I finally retired from BMO at Niagara Square Branch in 1997 due to a reorganization after 25 years of dedicated service.”

To read the flyer, “The True Way To Bank”,  click here.
Hazel Wheatley (Pilon), Niagara Falls, Ontario 

If you have any comments regarding this story, please contact the BMO Cyber Pensioners News team at We look forward to hearing from you." 


"Much to Enjoy in Harvest Season" by Lloyd Varner

September 13, 2020

Lloyd Varner, Sackville, New Brunswick has written a wonderful story about growing up on a small family farm and his gardening knowledge of a wide variety of vegetable plants and harvest time. He has also shared with us a tasty recipe at the end of his story.  To read, "Much to Enjoy in Harvest Season"  click here

If you have any comments regarding this story, please contact the BMO Cyber Pensioners News team at We look forward to hearing from you." 


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 BMO Publications

BMO Obituaries - Apr., 2020
English      French

BMO Retirements - Apr., 2020 
English      French

Association Newsletters

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 New Members

November 25, 2020
Trish Flaherty of Toronto, ON

November 23, 2020
John Fallon of Edmonton, AB
Doris Card of Kelowna, BC
Lynn Slade of London, ON
Nicole Tanguay of Laval, QC
Alex Wong of Msrkham, ON

November 22, 2020
Sharon Gerger of Waterloo, ON
Laurie Moore of Newmarket, ON

November 21, 2020
Scott Elliott of South Bruce Peninsula, ON
Rhonda Bennitt of Dundas, ON

November 18, 2020
Al Howling of Trenton, ON
Chris Whittaker of Ajax, ON
Leslie Chambers of Toronto, ON

November 17, 2020
Mike Carlin of Calgary, AB
Esther Rahmel of Stoney Creek, ON
Lynn Skillings of Port Colborne, ON

November 14, 2020
Doug Amy of Winnipeg, MB

November 9, 2020
Barbara Grover of Burnaby, BC

November 5, 2020
Daniela O'Leary-Gill of Riverwoods, IL

November 4, 2020
Dale Gee-Quan of North York, ON

November 2, 2020
F. W. Orde Morton of Toronto. ON

October 28, 2020
Verna Rohde of Winnipeg, MB

October 27, 2020
Ann Etter of Halifax, NS

October 22, 2020
Wilf Wilhelm of Stouffville, ON
Dan Tompkins of Dartmouth, NS
Ivana Tupone of Toronto, ON
Lela Dawson of Vancouver, BC

October 15, 2020
Martha E. H. Fernandes of Mississauga ON

October 9, 2020
Linda Hannemann of Elmwood, ON

October 5, 2020
Latifa Pardhan of Toronto, ON

October 2, 2020
Sharon Burfoot of Stirling, ON

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We look forward to input, material and photos from our registered members.  Please contact the BMO Cyber Pensioners News team at