It’s been a long six month road to recovery for Maurice Draude and his family, but Thursday May 28th, Maurice bade farewell to City Hospital in Saskatoon and returned to his home in Wakaw.
What started out as a trip to Prince Albert with his grand-daughter, Kinsley, ended abruptly in a horrific accident just a few short kilometres north of Wakaw. An oncoming car lost control in a curve after encountering a patch of black ice, careened into Maurice’s vehicle, before ending in the ditch. Tragically, the accident claimed the life of the driver of the other vehicle, a local 19 year old, Rebecca Georget. Maurice suffered potentially life-threatening injuries, but miraculously Kinsley was unscathed. This is a further testament to the life-saving abilities of a properly installed and utilized child carseat. Maurice was rushed to Royal University Hospital in Saskatoon where he remained until his condition was such that he was able to begin rehabilitation at City Hospital.
Maurice and his wife Sandi are well-known members of the community, having owned and operated Hometown Foods for many years before selling the business and retiring in 2018. After the accident, a fundraiser, which sold out in record breaking time, was held for the family, and friends and neighbours waited anxiously for the day Maurice could return home. What wife Sandi thought would be a handful of people waiting to welcome Maurice home, instead was an escorted parade into town with townsfolk emerging from their homes and stores to wave, shout and honk horns welcoming Maurice and Sandi. Participating in the parade with lights and sirens were the Wakaw/Hoodoo Fire and Rescue, the R.C.M.P., the Wakaw Fire Department, Wakaw District Ambulance, and a multitude of well-wishers who joined the parade in their personal vehicles with lights blinking and horns honking. The parade travelled east down First Street through the main business area, before circling back to Maurice and Sandi’s house where more people waited to greet Maurice as he wheeled from the van, however the first to greet him were grandchildren Blaise and Kinsley.