Photo thanks to Dale Costello
When Blaine Cornell passed away yesterday on January 16th, 2020 it was a shock to us all. Blaine was a gate keeper to Carleton Place history as his family was a prominent force in our community. He kept it alive not only on local heritage boards but in thought. He was full of stories, and he loved to tell them. We would both lament that the newer generations were not very good at storytelling when compared to the generations before us. Talking about our past arguably is the thing that makes us human and teaches us right from wrong, and most importantly teaches us our history. Blaine will be missed as a father, grandfather, friend and an important community member. We miss him already. My love to the Cornell family and his sister Sheila McCallum.
Way back when (High School Days) I recall Blaine coming in to the Carleton Lunch (next to the Roxy Movie Theatre) and ordering his usual – which was a hamburger and Coke – and then we would sit for what seemed like hours talking about all and sundry. By the way, this would be on Saturdays (we were not playing hookey from school), and Blaine’s hamburger would have been made by Ed Giffin, a mutual school friend, and short-order cook for the Carleton Lunch, which Ed’s father John Giffin owned. We all had nick-names at that time, and Blaine was known as “Herb”, which was his father’s name, who was also our Chief of Police for many years.
As you probably know, in later years, Blaine was an accomplished self-taught artist and created many wonderful paintings, (many of which he gave away), not to mention his singing with the Town Singers, and involvement with the Beckwith School Museum. He will also be remembered for his boyish grin, and his dry sense of humour.
Blaine’s dad Herb Cornell
Blaine had a long history in Carleton Place. Certainly as the son of the Chief of Police, Herb, he had a front row seat to many stories and events here. His own career was well supported by that family history.
Blaine was a keen supporter of our community heritage serving in recent years on several heritage committees and we all know of his quiet wit. Blaine loved his painting hobby. It is sad to lose him and he will be missed. Rob Probert
This cool group took over the steps of the Bank of Nova Scotia in 1959!
Pictured are Blaine Cornell, Gary McLellan, Weldon Armour seated, Dave Gordon, Dale Costello, Bob Bigras, Gerald Griffith, Ray Paquette and Gordon Bassett.- Carleton Place and Beckwith Heritage Museum
Jennifer Fenwick Irwin
Blaine Cornell was the best storyteller! Listening to him, it seemed he lived in every neighbourhood in Carleton Place, dated every girl at CPHS, and had a hand in any shenanigans that happened on Bridge Street. I’ll forever be grateful for his generosity with his time and facts and jokes. Blaine donated many items belonging to his father, Police Chief Herb Cornell to the museum’s collection, but was still searching for the elusive cap…. I’ll miss him dreadfully. Jennifer Fenwick Irwin
Blaine Cornell and Dale Costello in the front row – Carleton Place Canadian April 24th 1958 from Photos from the Wanda Morrison- Joan Kehoe Collection-See another photo- click-Some of the Carleton Place Local Lads- Flynn Costello and Cornell
CPHS Football team… Thanks Joann Voyce
Peter Bradley Taken by Bob Drader, we both took a lot of photos then for Mr Palmateer the coach.
Blaine was my best growing up buds. Played hockey and played drums together in high school, just did so many things together. I’m shocked and stunned by this sad news. RIP Blaine, and thanks so much for the great memories we shared. Blaine and I were like brothers, and I am completely shocked by this news. At our reunions we shared so many stories from the 50’s. My Bud forever.
Blaine and Boyne Lewis
In memory of Blaine –Thanks Joann Voyce
Spent many a summer evening with Blaine who will always live on in my memories…😢
Just last summer I got one of Blaine’s paintings at our class of 59 annual reunion. In our wilder days, Blaine was the bouncer between us and the Chief of Police. When we partied too hard, he would receive a call from his dad to settle us down before his dad would have to do it himself. Of course we obeyed instantly. LOL –Joann Voyce
You could always see Blaine singing with the CP Singers
Some of the stories Blaine told me or helped me with:
Leslie Building (across from the Post Office) Blaine Cornell told me the entire back (east) side of the building suddenly collapsed in 1953 and an overpowering smell of formaldehyde wafted through the town. Buildings all along Beckwith Street were evacuated, including the Bell Telephone exchange at the corner of Albert Street – the only time in their history they stopped work! It seems that the embalming fluid had been slowly leaking down the back wall, eating away the mortar and stone, until the entire wall collapsed. Could it have been young Emma who was still a ‘wet-user’ even in death? Was she still siphoning off the embalming fluid and forgetting to shut off the valve? After all, invincibility and forgetfulness are also common side effects of smoking the fluid — or was she just one overly happy phantom that was tub-thumping and no one was ever going to keep her down.
Ray Paquette A nice picture of Chief Cornell who’s personal touch set the tone for policing in Carleton Place for many years. He quietly, without a fuss, maintained law and order in Carleton Place for many years, first as a police Sargent and finally the Chief. The example and leadership he exhibited lasted long after his retirement.
Dale Costello Knew Herb Cornell, but not in a professional setting. And of course, son Blaine and I have been buds since kindergarden.
One day Blaine and I sat in the museum and talked about this picture and its surroundings for over an hour and a half LOL–Do you remember Carleton Place Police Force Constable Ray McIssac, or Police Chief Herb Cornell? In the photo they are proudly standing in front of a newly acquired Ford police cruiser on Mill Street in 1960. Look how much Mill Street has changed!–Carleton Place and Beckwith Heritage Museum–
Suddenly at home on Thursday January 16, 2020 at the age of 79.
Loving husband of Maggie of 45 years. Dear father of Sarah Cornell (Tony Dugdale) and Becky Cornell (Ryan Clark). Very proud grandfather of Chloe, Mia, Grace and Harrison. Dear uncle of Mike Robillard. Survived by his sister Sheila McCallum (Ross-deceased) and his brothers-in-law Greg Affleck (Nancy) and Brian Affleck (Edith).
Friends may support the family at the Alan R. Barker Funeral Home 19 McArthur Avenue, Carleton Place, on Sunday January 19, 2020 from 2-4 p.m. and 6-8 p.m. Funeral service Monday in the chapel at 11:00 a.m. Interment in the spring at Auld Kirk Cemetery.
For those who wish, a donation to the Carleton Place Hospital Foundation or the Gideons Society would be appreciated by the family.