Madam Speaker, I rise today to celebrate the life and acknowledge the passing of Elder Gilbert Sewell. A highly respected member of Pabineau First Nation, Elder Sewell is an excellent example of someone who dedicated his life to the pursuit and sharing of knowledge.
He was a historian, a storyteller and a traditional guide, but his greatest passion was sharing his knowledge and passing it down to future generations.
He touched many people with his knowledge, from his efforts to organize Mi'kmaq cultural events at local schools to having audiences with British royalty or to being featured on many well-known TV programs. His passion was recognized with several awards, including the New Brunswick Human Rights Award, the Canadian Merit Award and the Queen Elizabeth II Jubilee Medal. It is no exaggeration to say that Elder Sewell's teaching would help ensure that Mi'kmaq traditional knowledge and language will live on for generations to come.
I thank his family and loved ones for sharing this great man with us, and I hope they know that our thoughts are with them during this difficult time.