BOUCTOUCHE, N.B. – In honour of Doug Demeyere and his wife Starr’s dedication to the community of Norfolk, friends and family have started a fund in the couple's names to help support the charities close to their hearts.
The move ensures that despite their sudden passing, their good work and names will live on.
Doug Demeyere, 62, and Starr, 63, died in a house fire on Sept. 7 while visiting friends in Bouctouche, N.B.
The RCMP ruled out foul play saying it appears the blaze that destroyed the two-storey home started accidentally.
The homeowners were able to escape the flames, though the husband suffered serious injuries including burns and smoke inhalation.
Demeyere was the second-generation owner of Demeyere Chrysler in Simcoe, Ont., roughly 65 km southwest of Hamilton.
The store is currently run by their son, Derek.
“They were incredibly popular people and this is the reflection of all the good they provided the community over the years,” family friend Ross Keegan told the Simcoe Reformer regarding the community memorial held at The Simcoe Composite School gym.
In addition to Doug’s work in the community as a dealer for many years, reports indicate Starr was also very committed locally. She helped develop Norfolk County's first Sports Hall of Recognition and volunteered widely in the community.
“If she was ever approached by any group for help or assistance, she always said yes. She was always there to help,” Keegan added.
Donations to the family fund will be invested with the proceeds going to charities the couple would have supported. The Norfolk Community Foundation and the Demeyere family will administer the fund.
- With files from The Simcoe Reformer