Cheryl Hval, a former longtime resident of Fort Smith and Hay River, has received the Sovereign’s Medal for Volunteers from the Office of the Governor General.

While Hval relocated to Rimbey, Alberta earlier this year, during her time in the North she was actively involved in coaching curling and gymnastics, Girl Guides, and Sunday school.

“I just do it because I love to do it,” Hval told Cabin Radio about her volunteering – adding she was motivated to coach the sports because her daughters wanted opportunities to participate.

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“This medal has really humbled me. It was totally unexpected,” said Hval, who moved to Hay River in 1980 and then to Fort Smith in 1989.

“This is well deserved,” the Fort Smith Curling Association posted to its Facebook page. “Cheryl has been a marvellous volunteer for the Fort Smith Curling Centre and NWTCA [Northwest Territories Curling Association] over the years.”

According to the Office of the Governor General’s website, the medal is awarded to Canadians who have made “significant, sustained and unpaid contributions to their community.”

Recipients can be nominated by anyone, and winners are selected based on merit.