Fire chief in Manor apologizes for anti-French rant
WARNING: This story contains explicit language
The volunteer fire chief for the village of Manor, Sask., has offered a formal letter of apology to the francophone woman who was on the receiving end of an anti-French rant.
Troy Chapman's apology was signed by him Thursday and provided to Danielle Duperre who raised concerns about the chief's behaviour when she called 911 to report what she thought was a fire danger.
"I spoke without thinking and didn't take your feelings into consideration," Chapman stated in his letter. "There's no arguing what I said was inappropriate."
The apology was also signed by the mayor of the village, Vickie Akins. The village had previously offered a separate letter of apology to Duperre.
Fire chief responded to 911 call over bonfire
In an exclusive interview with CBC earlier this month, Duperre explained how she called 911 on Oct. 2 and asked the dispatcher to send police to monitor a bonfire she said was threatening trees on her property.
Her neighbour had started the fire, which she felt was much too large.
She said a man, later identified as Chapman, the village's volunteer fire chief, showed up at her door and an argument ensued.
"Are you going to pay for this shit?" the man asked Duperre.
"What do you mean?" Duperre replied.
"911 call," he said. "Are you going to pay for this?"
"Why?" Duperre asked.
"Because there's nothing going on over there," he said. "Between your little petty f--king French shit going on, I'm getting f--king tired of this shit."
"My trees are burned," she said.
"You know what you need to do?" the man said. "Go back to f--king Montreal where you belong."
From Montreal to small-town Saskatchewan
Duperre moved from Montreal after falling in love with a 1905 house in Manor.
Duperre recorded the encounter with the fire chief and took her concerns to the local RCMP detachment, where she was told it was not a police matter.
The matter did come to the attention of the village council, which led to a letter of apology Oct. 8.
Duperre told CBC that people in the community have been, for the most part, quite friendly to her and the bonfire encounter was the first time she had come across anyone so overtly anti-French.
Manor is in the southeast part of the province, about 114 kilometres northeast of Estevan. There are 322 people in the village, according to the latest census.