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Hamlet employee retires after 33 years
A feast was held to recognize him for his service to Taloyoak

Miranda Scotland
Northern News Services
Published Monday, January 27, 2014

For the past 33 years Chester Porter has been the Hamlet of Taloyoak's go to guy when it comes to all things maintenance.

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Chester Porter retired from the Hamlet of Taloyoak Dec. 1 after 33 years of work. The hamlet held a feast to honour Porter and present him with a plaque in recognition for his years of service. - photo courtesy of the Hamlet of Taloyoak

Carpentry work, plumbing, furnace repair, he does it all.

"It's very difficult to get those kind of people nowadays," said David Irquit, assistant senior administrative officer.

"Chester has been a very big asset He's finally retired and we're definitely going to miss him. He was a very dedicated worker and he took his job seriously."

Porter's last day on the job was Dec. 1 although he may be called to help out now and then.

The hamlet held a community feast to thank Porter for his years of service and presented him with a recognition plaque.

MLA Jeannie Ugyuk, mayor Tommy Aiyout and James Eetoolook, vice-president of Nunavut Tunngavik Incorporated, stopped by to support Porter.

The event was a complete surprise for the 64 year old.

"Some lady asked me, 'what's so special for you tonight?' I said, 'I don't know'," said Porter, who describes himself as a man of few words.

"I never expected to get this kind of treatment. I know I've been working for the hamlet for 33 years but it was just regular, that's the way I work and then I retire. They surprised me by doing a feast with the public."

Porter said he became interested in learning how to do repairs when he was younger because of the length of time it takes to get new parts in Nunavut.

"When something breaks you have to repair it. We're not like down south," he said.

In 1979, he left his hometown of Gjoa Haven for Iqaluit to take a six-week course on boilers and furnaces.

He moved to Taloyoak not long after to start working for the hamlet. The rest of his expertise he learned on the job, said Porter.

A grandfather of seven, Porter is still deciding what to do with his new-found free time but has an idea in mind.

"I would like to open a repair shop for homeowners," he said.

"I enjoy the work."

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