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News Update


Letter from the Editor

May 14, 2021

To say the least, 2020 and the first five months of 2021 have been unusual and trying. Daily reports of COVID infections and new variants, often confusing health advisories and vaccination rollout plans and a constantly changing variety of lockdowns, circuit breakers and border restrictions or imposed isolation have not helped.

While not necessarily because of the pandemic, we have seen a number of our family or friends pass away over this lengthy period. Dealing with these sad events has been made incredibly more difficult because of restrictions. Our thoughts, as always go to their loved ones and families.

Social and recreational activities that are organized for BMO pensioners across the country have generally been placed on hold until life returns to normal. This has meant that for the News Team all of the regular announcements, reports, photographs and some of the newsletters have been absent or understandably shorter than usual.

Fortunately, many of our members have stepped up with a larger than usual number of articles and stories and I would like to give a nod to Joan Mesic who has done a stellar job of assisting contributors and managing a heavier publishing schedule.

In the meantime we have taken the opportunity to review our website, and mainly the drop down menus to identify and clarify information which is, or maybe remains out of date. In particular, while we have left some details of the various pensioner associations and other social groups (found under the Resources drop down menu) as it was before the pandemic, we will be updating information as and when we are advised of any revisions.

Similarly, ticket offers and event announcements remain as they were in 2019. We are not aware of any changes to the information under the useful BMO Links Page which provides contact information for important departments relating to benefits.

With the exception of Privacy and Publishing Policy pages (found under the About Us drop down menu) other changes we have made are mainly just tinkering.

We have however combined and expanded those policy pages under one heading to avoid repetition and based on experience both clarified and provided guidance to contributors on our publishing approach and limitations. Hopefully members will find this useful going forward.

In closing, like all of you, we are looking forward to returning to a time when social and recreational activities can resume. For those of you who enjoy gardening or gardens, the most recent bulletin from our friends in the Lower Mainland BOMPA is certainly worth a read. In the meantime please stay safe and well.

Dave Harmer

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




Letter to the Editor - Re: “My Early Years at Bank of Montreal”

May 13, 2021

We recently received a letter from Lloyd Varner, Sackville, New Brunswick about the above-captioned story and are pleased to share it with you.

"I found Mal Sanderson's story, “My Early Years at Bank of Montreal”, dated May 9, 2021, to be absorbing. I could feel every move in his young career as it was all so familiar and real to me. I too joined the bank at age 16, directly out of high school. Bank policy in the ‘old days’ placed demands and restrictions on the lives of its young officers which would seem unreal to us today. For example, I remember that the bank’s permission had to be obtained when an officer wanted to get married, if he was earning less than $2,000 per year.

Now, I am looking forward to Mal Sanderson writing "another story” as he hinted in the ending of this one. Like me, Mal took his computer systems training at the bank's Education Centre above Peel Street Branch in Montreal. He was in the first group of trainees. I was in the third group. He was outstanding in training and he has been outstanding in the bank's computer systems operations group. He has been a key member in the bank's computer systems implementation and operations and is respected by so many.”

Lloyd Varner, Sackville, New Brunswick


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




Lower Mainland Bulletin - May 2021

May 10, 2021

The latest Bulletin is now available.

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

Thanks to Ron Gillies for sharing.






“My Early Years at Bank of Montreal” by Malcolm (Mal) Sanderson, Ottawa, Ontario.

May 9, 2021


Malcolm (Mal) Sanderson, Ottawa, Ontario has sent us a story about some of his early experiences in the Bank of Montreal. We hope you will enjoy his story as it is written with a dry sense of humour which will no doubt make you chuckle. Stories like Mal's document how far we have come in the banking world and are treasures to read. Click to read, "My Early Years at Bank of Montreal".

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



“Memories of My BMO Banking Career” by Harry Gregg, Mississauga, Ontario

April 27, 2021


Harry Gregg, Mississauga, Ontario has written an interesting story about his career and his involvement in Bank of Montreal's early days of technological change. His story is very informative and includes the role he had in the birth of the movie, "Space Age Banking" which was created by the bank to help communicate technological changes to employees.   Click to read, "Memories of My BMO Banking Career".

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



“IBIS” - (No Not the Egyptian Wading bird(1)“International Banking Information System and Management Reporting Systems” by Rob Allan, Hamilton, Ontario

April 21, 2021

Rob Allan, Hamilton, Ontario has written an interesting story about IBIS, "International Banking Information System and Management Reporting Systems", which he was responsible for setting up while he worked in BMO. This is Rob's second story he has shared with us and we are sure you will enjoy it. Click to read, "International Banking Information System and Management Reporting Systems".

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 - “10-Pin Bowling with BMO in Toronto” by Linda (Aspland) Zumm, Port Moody, British Columbia

April 16, 2021

We are pleased to share with you the following letter from Linda Zumm which was in response to our article, “BMO and Curling” and requests for stories about curling or other sports our members have been, or are, involved in.

“In March 1988 International Payments Department Vancouver was closed and I accepted a transfer to Toronto with the same department. As we worked closely with our other counterparts within BMO, I knew some of my colleagues via phone only. When I mentioned I was transferring to Toronto, they were generous with their offers and information regarding my relocation. On my arrival to Toronto, I was placed in a downtown hotel by BMO. The weather was a shock for me as it was freezing cold and snowing, unlike Vancouver that was transitioning into spring. Before I left Vancouver, few of my Toronto counterparts advised me not to bring spring clothes but winter clothing as it was still below freezing in Toronto. I had a ski jacket and some sweaters; in B.C. we mostly need rainwear. I remember I arrived at around 10:00 p.m. at Toronto Pearson Airport and got a cab to the hotel.  After I had been checked in, I was asked if I needed anything and I responded by asking them if they had heat and hot water.

When I arrived at the department which was located in the Toronto Regional Data Centre on Simcoe Street, I was greeted and made welcomed by many of the staff. I was very fortunate as I was offered temporary accommodation by a kind co-worker until I was able to secure my own living arrangements. It was a process settling in, however, things evolved quickly and soon I was very busy with my job and the many activities available within the bank’s social life. Summer is very short in Toronto, so many activities are in the fall, winter and early spring months.

Within a few months I was approached by my colleagues regarding their 10-Pin Bowling Club. The activity took place on Saturday afternoons at Thorncliffe Bowlerama (now closed). I had limited experience bowling but agreed to join the club as my roommate was also involved and bowled. It turned out to be a great way for me to integrate and I wasnt too bad at bowling. The group was mixed and I made friends with colleagues who worked in other departments. Eventually, as I played more my skill improved and I won the title, ‘Bowler of the Season’ with the highest score.

We had lots of fun, winter passed quickly and lots of other social activities came about because of this first encounter with a game I had never played before. Softball, baseball games, barbecues, Dragon Boat Racing, volley ball, etc., filled my spare time.  My social life expanded quickly and the BMO community made my time in Toronto enjoyable and provided good memories and lifelong friends.

(By the way, I still have the same waterproof snow boots and ice spikes I bought while I was in Toronto, which I have only used once in 20 years here in B.C.)”

Linda (Aspland) Zumm, Port Moody, British Columbia

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


Letter to the Editor - “A Tribute to Scott Bradbury Hean’s Legacy - March 18, 1948 - November 26, 2019”.

April 13, 2021

We are pleased to share the following letter we received from Joanne Gassman regarding Scott Bradbury Hean.

“Scott Hean was a devoted BMO employee for 17 years. Scott joined BMO Calgary as the Vice President, Oil & Gas, Corporate and Government Banking, in 1982 after working with J. P. Morgan in New York. Originally from the West Coast, he requested a transfer and moved to British Columbia in 1989 as Senior Vice President, CIFS (Corporate and Institutional Financial Services). He retired in 1998 at the age of 50 to pursue his love of entrepreneurship; working with a number of junior mining entities up until his untimely passing from brain cancer at the age of 71.

As time passes us by, many of us ask ourselves, “How have I made a difference? How can I continue to make a difference after I am gone?”  Scott was one of those people who looked at the bigger picture and positive change. Those of us who knew him remember him as a passionate, enthusiastic and generous man, who didn’t just think he followed through with action…he did.

Scott had a deep love for art and community and served as the Board Chair for the Bill Reid Foundation for seven years. Given his passion and belief in supporting young people and bringing people together, his beloved widow Mary, son Rob and family have joined together with the Bill Reid Foundation to recognize and honour Scott and have created a mentorship fund in his name. This fund focuses on the development of mentorship opportunities for Indigenous youth to become emerging artists, curators and cultural workers.

To find out more about Scott Bradbury Hean and his generous work to help make a difference in this world, please look up Scott’s name on the internet where his mentorship fund can be read and reviewed.”

Joanne Gassman, Bowen Island, British Columbia


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




"BMO and Curling" - by Joan Mesic, Senior Correspondent

March 28, 2021

We recently published a Letter to the Editor "Memories of BMO's Bonspiel, Kingston, Ontario" dated March 28, 2021 and some of our members have expressed an interest in learning more about BMO's involvement in this sport. You might be surprised to hear that curling became a popular sport in the bank dating back to 1817.  Click to read, "BMO and Curling", which was published on our website, April 4, 2018. 

If you have any comments regarding this story, or stories about curling or any other sports you were involved in, please contact the BMO Cyber Pensioners News team at We look forward to hearing from you. 

“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."


Letter to the Editor - “Memories of BMO’s Bonspiel, Kingston, Ontario” by Tom Dilworth, Milton, Ontario and Ron Stewart, Burlington, Ontario

March 24, 2021

We received a letter from Tom Dilworth with a photo of the “Third Event Winner - BMO Bank of Montreal, Kingston, Bonspiel - 70th Year Milestone - Feb. 6, 2010” trophy that his curling team won 11 years ago. He mentioned that there were two very strong curlers on his team, Ron Stewart and Ron Gates. We decided to contact both of these outstanding teammates to find out what they remembered about the bank’s bonspiel.  Ron Gates left the reminiscing to Ron Stewart and this is what he had to say.

Ron Stewart’s Memories of BMO’s Bonspiel, Kingston, Ontario:

“I first heard of the Bank of Montreal’s Kingston bonspiel in 1967 while working at Head Office Securities Department in Montreal. My fiancée was a student at Queen’s University in Kingston and it so happened at that time the bank’s Montreal curlers were afforded a cheap round-trip train ticket to Kingston. I joined them but didn’t curl. Instead, I had a weekend in Westport Ontario with my future in-laws and my fiancee. The trip was a success from my perspective as I must have passed the initial ‘test’ with my in-laws and received the official nod, as my fiancée and I got married and are still together many years later.

I started curling in the bonspiel events in the early 80s with a number of different curlers from the Hamilton - Burlington area. The weekend of the bank’s bonspiel event, usually started on Friday with lunch at the “Strathcona Hotel” on York Street in downtown Toronto at noon and then all of us flowed over to Union Station at 4:00 p.m. to the reserved BMO car for the trip to Kingston. A convoy of taxis took the group to our hotel where our hosts, Archie Kirkwood and Peter Tate, had set up the hospitality suite. A wonderful two days of curling and networking ensued and we all survived to curl another year.

In 1985 a team was formed at the Burlington Club by members, Paul Patton (Skip), Ron Stewart (Vice), Peter Mackay (Lead and Ringer) Dick Powers (Second). Powers was a ringer from the “Glendale Curling Club” in Hamilton. These reprobates won the A.G.M. (BMO’s Assistant General Manager’s), trophy that year and missed by 1 point in ’86. Curling history was made in ’86 when both the Lead and Second threw their first stones with their chins on the ice!

The trophy that Tom refers to was won many years later with another Burlington Curling Club and BMO pensioners consisting of myself (Skip), Bruce Crampton (Third), Ron Gates (Second), Tom Dilworth (Lead).

All in all, my memories of the bank’s bonspiels were filled with lots of camaraderie, new friendships and some good competition.  Plus, my first trip to Kingston was a big event in my life meeting my in-laws and subsequent marriage.”

Best Regards, Ron

If you have any tales about the sports you were involved in or any other stories, 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

Once we hear where the Bank is locating more up-to-date information on retirements and obituaries we will advise accordingly.

Association Newsletters

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 New Members

May 14, 2021
Jean Tremblay of St-Eustache, QC

May 11, 2021
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May 10, 2021
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May 1, 2021
Robert Melnik of Hope, BC

April 30, 2021
Catharina Van Es of Metcalf, ON

April 23, 2021
Karin Jollimore of Calgary, AB

April 21, 2021
Ross Snelgrove of Minden ON

April 19, 2021
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April 17, 2021
Bev Fleury of Belleville, ON

April 15, 2021
Kamal Nanavaty of North Vancouver, BC

April 11, 2021
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April 9, 2021
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Claire Baxter of Toronto, ON

April 8, 2021
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April 2, 2021
Debbie DaSilva of Delta, BC

April 1, 2021
Michel Paradis of Glen Robertson, ON
Valerie Atkins of Whitehorse, YT

March 30, 2021
Donald Cleyn of Ottawa, ON

March 29, 2021
Ron Boychuk of Yorkton, SK

March 26, 2021
Rodger Noble of Ottawa, ON

March 24, 2021
Keri Kotyk of Regina, SK

March 22, 2021
Kathryn Birrell of Grimsby, ON

March 20, 2021
Norma Beitz of Winnipeg, MB

March 18, 2021
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