Joseph A. Caulder Collection
Past Rotary International Director 1928-29 - Regina, Sask., Canada
"Eyewitness to Rotary International's First 50 Years"
JOSEPH A. CAULDER - An eyewitness to Rotary International's first 50 years.
Album 2 - Page 98, "Uncle" Wat McClain
"UNCLE" WAT MC CLAIN"
90th Birthday, February 26th, 1957
R. Watson McClain was 91 on February 26th last. He is now, and has been for years, the most loved man in the Rotary Club of Toronto. He never misses Fellowship Committee luncheon on Thursday, or Rotary on Friday.
On his 90th birthday he rode this 1400 lb. white horse twice around the dining room and then dismounted, doffed his silk hat, and made a 30 minute address which was as good as any the club had heard in years. The picture opposite speaks for itself.
He was very successful in business and built up the largest showcase and store fixture business in Canada. His wife died of cancer about 1938. His only son, after a very successful career in the Canadian Army, died of Leukemia in 1956. This made it necessary to sell the business. But Uncle Wat retains his well appointed office at the old place for the duration of his life.
Now he spends his time and money on helping all sorts of needy causes. On his 90th birthday he wound up his address to Rotary by announcing that on his death his 6 acre estate in Toronto's east end would go to the Rotary Club of Toronto to be used as a home for aged and needy people and as a memorial to his late wife.
Someone who has a gifted pen should write an article for the Readers Digest under that well known heading "The most unforgettable character I have ever met." It would surely qualify unless the writer failed miserably to tell the Uncle Wat McClain story in truth and clarity. Uncle Wat led a camel around the room on his 80th birthday, and rode an elephant on his 85th, and may ride a lion on his 100th !!!!!
May 4th, 1958.
(Article reproduced by permission)
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