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WARMINGTON

Don Cherry snubbed for Order of Canada — again

By Joe Warmington, Toronto Sun

Don Cherry (CRAIG ROBERTSON, Toronto Sun)

Don Cherry (CRAIG ROBERTSON, Toronto Sun)

Maybe we’ll get it right by Canada’s 200th birthday and give the Order of Canada to Don Cherry.

We missed our chance for the 150th.

Yes, the legendary hockey coach, commentator, animal lover and humanitarian was snubbed again.

Cherry, who has raised millions for charity, should be there.

But the people who block conservatives from getting the honour just run out the clock: My late Toronto Sun colleagues Peter Worthington, Bob MacDonald, George Gross are examples.

Their Liberal peers from the hay day of newspapers certainly all got the nod.

If I had any say, my Order of Canada List would include retired Toronto Police staff-superintendant Gary Grant, who started Crime Stoppers. He’s not an actor or singer, but has helped save a lot of lives.

Another no-brainer is Trent Hills Mayor Hector Macmillan, who took on the province on behalf of pancreatic cancer patients like himself.

I was pleased to see street nurse Cathy Crowe receive the honour because she’s earned it. Another person like that is none other than Charles McVety and his team at Canada Christian College who — without fanfare — have a van out on the streets of Toronto every night feeding and helping people.

Same goes for Nav Bhatia, known as the Raptor’s superfan and for his famous Hyundai car dealership, but not as much for his charity which has taken thousands of children in need to Raptors games.

My own Sun colleagues Michele Mandel, Steve Simmons, Michael Peake, Mark Bonokoski, Sue-Ann Levy, Tarek Fatah and Andy Donato should all be in the Order of Canada — and if they were Liberals they would be.

One guy who will not be getting the Order of Canada is Russell MacDonald, who, at 97, died just two days before the 150th he was so looking forward to celebrating. Sun day-one legend Bob MacDonald’s brother came back to Stellarton, N.S., after the Second World War.

A great Canadian. A great guy. Rest in Peace Russell.

If he ever gets out of the North Korean labour prison camp, I’d also give one to Rev. Hyeon Soo Lim, who has spent 30 years feeding the hungry.

How about the Order of Canada to bartender Alina Budzinski at the York Station Bar in the Royal York hotel? She and the tiny, train-car style bar retired Friday for good but the memories will remain. She made great martinis but also kept big secrets — everything from stock tips to royal travel plans — for 42 years. And always with a smile.

Also on this Canada Day, happy birthday to Dan Aykroyd. The same to my son, Joshua, who proudly shares a birthday with Aykroyd on Canada Day.

Danny turns 65 and Josh five. Both are proud Canadians.

Danny is so cool. The other day I stopped into Sydenham, near Kingston, for some amazing French fries at Jim’s Gourmet Fries chip wagon and heard a great story. Jim was serving the fries to none other than Aykroyd. He was just glad he had his camera, because he was sure no one would believe him.

Last but not least hats of to Peter Mansbridge on his final broadcast on the CBC’s The National and his retirement. For a long time, he’s brought the country its news with grace, fairness and integrity.

We’ll keep working on getting one for Cherry before he 200th.

Happy Canada Day. Scrawler out.