CJAD Hero of the Month Johnny Montanaro

Jul 31, 2014
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Johnny Montanaro is a name many people may recognize for his contributions to the music industry over last 40 years, but it is due to his selflessness and giving nature for which he should truly be recognized. That is why CJAD is honouring him as the Hero of the month for July. At the age of 83, Johnny continues to donate his time and effort to the people in his community, helping to provide them with the essentials that they need to lead a happy life. Whether it is a child who needs a healthy breakfast before school, or a newly immigrated family that needs furniture to start their lives here in Canada, Johnny is always using his contacts and resources to help people who are not in a position to help themselves. “No” is word that does not exist in Johnny’s vocabulary when it comes to helping others.

Johnny is constantly doing something to help those around him, never giving himself a moment’s rest. He takes a great deal of pride in helping people in any capacity, but there is one of his accomplishments that he is especially proud of. Once a year, all 33 police stations in the Greater-Montreal area organize a “Baked Bean Day” where all the stations deliver lunch to local businesses to raise money for various community organizations. Johnny was an integral part of last year’s drive at Station 42 and thanks to his work and dedication they raised the most money of all 33 stations. Close to $8000 was raised and it is thanks largely in part to Johnny. The money was given to different organizations in the St-Leonard area that help feed children in need. For Johnny there is no greater feeling then knowing he has made a child happy.

You can learn a lot about Johnny by speaking to the people with whom he works. Johnny has been volunteering at Police Station 42 in St-Leonard for the past 15 years and has left quite an impression on the people around him. Daniel Castonguay, community relations officer at Station 42, says he wishes there was a “Johnny Montanaro” at every police station because of how much he offers the people. He spoke of how he strives to always do more and to give as much of himself that he can to the people in the community. Daniel knows as well as anyone how much work Johnny does to help others and is happy to have him as part of the Station 42 familly

Johnny has not only personally given back to the people around him, but he has also inspired others to do the same. Martin Godin who was once just an acquaintance of Johnny is now a close personal friend of his. Martin was so inspired by what Johnny was doing that he started spending much of his own time learning from Johnny and helping him in his efforts to give back to the members of the community. He has been a great help to Johnny and does whatever he can to do his part. Martin spoke of how Johnny never thinks of himself and how he has the drive of a young man when it comes to helping others and that Johnny is the reason he has become so passionate about volunteering and contributing in any way he can.

While the people around him may recognize his efforts as extraordinary, Johnny is a man who feels that it is his duty to help those in need or less fortunate. “I think everybody has to pull in and do their share…If everybody puts in a bit of their time by helping people, that’s it. We’re going to succeed in the long run.” Johnny truly lives by that philosophy and is an exemplary member in his community and that is why he is the month’s CJAD hero.

Congratulations Johnny and thank you for all you do!

Listen to the interview with Andrew Carter


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