On Oct. 14, Patricia Murakami received the Sovereign’s Medal for Volunteers that celebrates her efforts in the community.
Murakami started volunteering in 1962 when she started working with people with handicaps.
In her time volunteering, her contributions included helping residents at the Joan Greenwood Place, helping to set up the Tillicum Workshop, participating as a minor hockey executive and helping set up the Hope Arena.
However, three years ago Murakami developed lung and heart problems and had to drop all her volunteer activities.
She was unable to talk to The Standard, but answered questions about her life through her husband, Ernie.
“She said she couldn’t have done it without all the help from all the people who worked with her,” said Ernie. “She wants to really accept it on behalf of all the people who worked with her.”
Twenty years ago, Murakami received the Governor General’s Caring Canadian Award.
In a letter signed by Governor General David Johnston, it stated that the Sovereign’s Medal is the replacement of the Caring Canadian Award, and “represents an elevation of the recognition into the Canadian Honours System.”
“Throughout my visits across Canada, I have had the pleasure of meeting individuals like yourself, who care about the well-being of others and who share a desire to make our communities kinder and healthier places in which to live,” said the letter.
Murakami worked professionally as a child psychologist in Hope and Chilliwack.