Sen. Deschambault leads Senate during Franco-American Day at the State House
Hundreds of celebrants participated in the 16th annual Franco-American Day at the Maine State House on Wednesday.
Franco-American Day is designated by the state to commemorate and celebrate the contributions of Franco-Americans in Maine. The day was celebrated Wednesday with traditional Franco-American music and food.
Sen. Susan Deschambault, D-Biddeford, was President Pro Tempore of the Maine Senate, who presided over the legislative session in French and English.
“French is my first language, and my family’s history is the history of Franco-Americans in Maine,” said Sen. Deschambault. “My grandparents started a successful laundry business in Biddeford, where they served the millworkers and others who came to Maine to build a life for their families. To preside over the Senate, speaking the language of my ancestors and honoring the contributions of thousands of Franco-American families was one of the most proud moments of my time in the Maine Senate.”
The day’s celebration also included Presentation of Colors by the Franco-American Veterans and presentations by dignitaries including a representative of David Alward, Consulate General in Boston, Canada; Valery Freland, Consulate General in Boston, France and Marie-Claude Francoeur, Quebec Delegate in Boston.
Sen. Deschambault also appeared during a press conference to mark the induction of new members to the Franco-American Hall of Fame. Those inducted included:
- Joel and Therese Dionne of Aroostook County
- Jean Paul Fortin of Kennebec County
- Juliana L’Heureux of Sagadahoc County
- Lionel “Nel” Meservier of Androscoggin County
- Andre Pied of Somerset County
- Muriel Poulin of York County
- The Honorable Paulette Beaudoin – who was awarded posthumously.
Mainers were also joined in the State House by representatives from the state’s Congressional delegation.