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Alberta, Past and Present, Historical and Biographical
Vol 3
Hon. Richard Gavin Reid

The horizon of every man's achievements is fixed by his own powers and capabilities. This statement is verified in the career of the Hon. Richard G. Reid, who began life in a humble capacity and is now serving as minister of health and of municipal affairs for Alberta, his industry, determination and ability, enabling him to outdistance many who started out under more favorable auspices. He was born near Glasgow, Scotland, in 1879, and is of Scotch ancestry in both the paternal and maternal lines. His father, George Reid, was a native of Aberdeenshire, Scotland, and was there married to Margaret Ogstone, who survives him and is now living in Alberta.

Richard Gavin Reid acquired his education in the public schools of Scotland, where he continued to reside, excepting for a period of war service in South Africa, until he reached the age of twenty-four years, when he started for Canada, arriving at Killarney, Manitoba, in 1903. Six months later he went to the lumber camps of New Ontario, where he was employed for a similar period, and in May, 1904, he came to Edmonton. Later he homesteaded in Saskatchewan but soon afterward the boundary line was changed and his claim was then included within the confines of this province, where he has since resided. His fellow citizens, recognizing his worth and ability, called him to public office, and for four years he was a member of the council of Buffalo Coulee, Alberta, acting as reeve of the municipality during two years of that period. On the organization of the Mannville Municipal Hospital district in 1918, Mr. Reid was made a member of its board, on which he continued to serve until his appointment to his present office, this being the first Municipal Hospital district organized in the province. On the 13th of August, 1921, Mr. Reid was made provincial minister of health and minister of municipal affairs. He brought to his important duties valuable practical experience, a clear understanding of the work entrusted to his care, and a willingness to serve the public, and is proving well worthy of the trust reposed in his ability.

Mr. Reid is a veteran of the South African war and in recognition of his service to his country he was awarded two medals. He enlisted at Glasgow, Scotland, in July, 1900, and in August of that year left for Africa. He was made lance sergeant of the Royal Army Medical Corps, being the youngest man in his mess to hold that rank, and was offered a commission, which he refused to accept. He served in South Africa for twenty-two months and was under fire during the Brak River engagement. He left that country, in February, 1902, and was then sent to Scotland, where he spent nine months, being connected with the hospital service during the greater part of that period.

Mr. Reid was married at Mannville, Alberta, to Miss Marian Stuart, a daughter of Kenneth Stuart. Mr. and Mrs. Reid have two children: George Stuart, who was born July 1, 1920; and Flora Marian. Mr. Reid is a member of the Edmonton Golf & Country Club and politically he is allied with the United Farmers of Alberta, while in religious faith he is a Presbyterian. His identification with public affairs forms one of the vital interests of his life and lie has always done efficient and conscientious work, being actuated at all time by high ideals and altruistic motives.


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