Do not go where the path may lead, go instead where there is no path and leave a trail.
Ralph Waldo Emerson
We are deeply grateful for the life of Thomas R. Maccagno. Tom was born at Lac la Biche, Alberta on February 16, 1939 and passed away in Edmonton on January 7, 2012. One of eight children raised by Michael and Valentine Maccagno, Tom was the first person from Lac La Biche to obtain a law degree. Tom married Annette Favennec on August 26, 1961. Tom was also blessed with four children: Terry, Morris, Michelle, and Marc, and five wonderful grandchildren, Tysir, Jenna, Rosa, Brandon, and Ilan.
Tom served his community as Mayor of Lac La Biche, Member of the Lakeland Park Advisory Committee, the Airmen’s Memorial Cairns Committee, President of the Lac La Biche Mission Historical Society, Member of the Lac La Biche Bicentennial Committee, and President of the Lac La Biche Birding Society. He was instrumental in the designation of Portage La Biche as an Historic Resource and the expansion of Sir Winston Churchill Park to include all of the islands on Lac la Biche. He discovered 16 orchid species and several rare plants in the Lakeland Region. He published articles in Alberta History, the Wild Lands Advocate, and Nature Alberta. Until his last days he was active with the Lac la Biche Big Dock Preservation Committee.
He received an Alberta Achievement Award for Preservation and Conservation (1983), an Emerald Award (1998), Canada’s Recreational Fisheries Award (2002), the Queen Elizabeth II Golden Jubilee Medal (2002), the Canadian Environmental Conservation Gold Award (2003), the Royal Canadian Legion McGrane Branch No.28 Certificate of Appreciation (2008), and was an Honourary Elder, Beaver Lake Cree Nation (2008).
Tom was a wonderful husband and father. With his family, he shared his passions for books, music, fishing, hunting, hiking, photography, sailing, skiing, archeology, history, botany, birding, art, and poetry. He crossed paths with many fascinating men and women, who became his friends. He was a spiritual and grateful person. One of his favourite expressions was “all that I have seen makes me unafraid of what I have not seen.”
So we do not lose heart. Though our outer self is wasting away, our inner self is being renewed day by day. For this light momentary affliction is preparing for us an eternal weight of glory beyond all comparison, as we look not to the things that are seen but to the things that are unseen. For the things that are seen are transient, but the things that are unseen are eternal.
2 Corinthians 4:16
Funeral Service will be held at St. Catherine’s Catholic Church in Lac La Biche on January 12, 2012 at 11:00 AM with Deacon Pat Murphy officiating. Luncheon to follow at the Heritage Centre.
Memorial donations may be made to the Kidney Foundation of Canada or the Alberta Wilderness Association.