Rod Carscallen

In the summer of 1970, I think, into the somewhat cliquey little crowd that were the Wap Guides, Rod Carscallen first arrived at Canoe Lake. Years later, I cannot imagine anything quite so imposing for a non-TSC type such as Rodney, than to be deposited onto the front porch of the Guide Shack. It was, as I say, a pretty comfortable crowd.

Rod easily dispensed with any of that nonsense, enjoyed several years at Wap, and was truly one of the good ones. His utter lack of preconceptions, his limitless desire to befriend, and his unique character are etched in my memory, and I dare say anyone who knew him. He was always dedicated to the success of the trip, and steadfastly uplifting to each and every camper who was fortunate enough to have him as their guide. His wonderful good humour, and most assuredly his zany personality made every experience with him a wonderful treat.

One of my best, and still vivid experiences in a canoe was the summer of 1973. Rod and I, along with Joan (Henry) Smart staffed the inaugural Camp Kipawa trip. That its founders Hugh Doran and Joss Haiblen were willing to have the 3 of us do that was remarkable enough, but for 30-odd days with a mix of both ex-TSC and other campers, we travelled the lakes and rivers of Kipawa on a most enjoyable journey. We became mates on that trip. One of us—I'm sure it was him—bent an aluminum boat (a little bit!) at one point, and the exchange between Rod and I as to who was going to make the call, and what was to be said was a hilarious episode. And the Ohio fishermen who got a little too friendly at one point had a few good stories to tell after they were dispatched by Rod!

He had the great good fortune to marry Brenda, and dedicated 30 odd years to the Ontario Provincial Police. It is simply unfair that his heart couldn't keep up with the rest of him. We had more than our share of get-togethers over the ensuing years, and had all manner of new and old things to talk about and catch up on, lies to tell and of course endless stories to laugh about. There was the occasion when we lived in Ottawa and he and Brenda were in nearby Kemptville. In a particularly dreadful winter ice storm he drove Cathy and our two young kids to her parents house in Oshawa—quite quickly, in an OPP black & white! At the first sign of any other police car, Rod would simply announce into the radio to anyone who was listening: "prisoner in transit!"

Rod was a man of infectious good humour, immense character, and great integrity. I am very glad that he landed on that porch.

Jim Smellie