Our community has been blessed over the years with many amazing people who have given from their hearts to make this community so vibrant either through volunteering or through donations. It is with extreme sadness that I am sharing that one such person will be leaving us soon, moving on after seventeen years of serving our community. Many people are not aware of Frank Hoffman, owner of North Grenville’s Canadian Tire. Frank will be leaving this community to move on to London, Ontario, taking over a large expansion of that community’s Canadian Tire store.
Some of us know him through the store’s Jumpstart program. Jumpstart is more than just about getting kids active. It’s about giving kids from families in financial need the same chance to participate as their neighbours, their classmates, and their friends. Whether it’s the chance to try a new sport, or to continue with a favourite one, no kid should be left out. Every year, Frank hosted this event, but, in his fashion, he always went those extra miles, getting the fire and police services, local businesses and volunteers involved.
Perhaps many of us only know him from his presence at these events, but Frank was involved in so much more. I have a list of many of his accomplishments, but this would fill more than a page in this paper. He was involved with the Knights of Columbus, the Kemptville District Hospital Foundation, a founding organiser of the Dog Park, hosted and sponsored the display of the Rotary Club’s Duck race every year, first sponsor and continuing sponsor of the Kemptville Live Music Festival, sponsor of many golf tournaments and the barbecues for Friends of the Library, and supported the Salvation Army and Big Sky Ranch. My list goes on, and I am sure to have missed many other accomplishments.
Frank, his wife Lorna and daughter Jessica, were also great lovers of animals. They took in stray or unwanted cats, litters, paid for all of the vet bills and then found them homes. In total, they supported four cat shelters. They also took in dogs, and North Grenville can thank Frank for the dog park here. He helped found this park in part due to having his own two dogs and nowhere safe to walk them.
With all of these accomplishments, I asked him what has stayed with him the most through all these years. What was his proudest moment? A single mother in our community lost her home in a fire, including her car which was in the garage. Frank and his staff repurposed a mini van and filled it with toys and accessories. They contacted her father and asked him to bring her to the store in order to surprise her. He will never forget that day, and how shocked the woman was to find out, not only was the van filled to the brim, but that the car was also given to her. They say that it is in giving that people receive the most joy. And this is so true of Frank. Most of what he did in our community was done quietly, with no fanfare.
There are also the bikes he gives away for free every year. He was approached by the police services to get a discount on a bike for a disabled person in our community. When asked how much it would cost, he said “it’s free”. And he continued to do this every year.
He has touched each and everyone in this community, whether you were aware of it or not.
It is with profound sadness that we say goodbye to him. He gave so much to this community and it is our loss and London’s gain.
The store will be closed September 6, Frank’s last day, and then we welcome the new store owner, Rick Johnson from Red Deer, Alberta. Reopening September 7.
“Frank would like to thank everyone in the community of North Grenville for your great support for all those years and for shopping locally!”
Frank is such a kind generous man. He could always be counted on for donating and supporting all the great charities in our community. He dedication and passion about Jumpstart was truly amazing. Good luck Frank at your new store. We will miss you!
Frank Hoffman is a business leader in our community, his absence will be greatly noticed. Here’s wishing the new owner all the best. They have shoes ( boots) to fill. With Frank, his wife Lorna, who is his partner in everything he did with the community and the Canadian Tire Corporation. I wish Frank and Lorna all the best in their new city and new store… it will be one of ( if not) the biggest in Canada!
NG Councilor and co owner of Grahame’s Bakery
There’s a reason why Claire Larabie liked you best.
You’ll be missed!
Jim and Judy Beveridge
From the minute he arrived in North Grenville, Frank was determined to make an impact on this community by not just being a great employer, but finding countless ways to give back. In addition to the countless fundraisers and sponsorships he has overseen, and the major contribution to the Municipality’s lending library, there have been many quiet acts of generosity few will know about . Frank has touched the lives of so many in this community through his service, caring and dedication. He will be greatly missed and we wish him well in his new endeavours
Mayor Nancy Peckford
It was an absolute pleasure working with Frank. He was such a dedicated member of this community and always helped when the need was great. His last act of kindness was amazing. All I did was ask if he could help me locate a bike for someone in need and he went above and beyond as usual. It is a great loss for us that he is going but I know the next community he will arrive in will be greater for him being there. I wish him nothing but the best!
Constable Ann Collins