Many people strive to leave a lasting legacy during their short time in history, pouring their heart into making life better for others.
That ideology was a driving force for former Millbrook Chief Lawrence Paul, who spent his life in service to others while aiming to make a real difference.
Today, the Millbrook First Nation, the county, province and nation mourns the loss of this visionary and accomplished leader.
Paul, 79, passed away on Wednesday evening after an extended stay in hospital.
A soft-spoken man, possessing strength, wisdom and the heart of a warrior, led his Mi’kmaq community to economic prosperity serving them as chief for 28 years of his life from 1984 to 2012.
When any opportunity presented itself, Chief Paul would speak of the great pride he had in his culture and his people, especially the youth.
He made education a priority, investing in schools and programs, viewing it as the key to future success and praised the many accomplishments of Mi’kmaq youth.
The former chief is widely credited for transforming the dream of establishing the Truro Power Centre on reserve land into a reality, contributing to jobs and growth for many people in the area.
His journey to succeed was not an easy one. During his time as chief he fought many courageous battles, shining a bright light on native rights in the process.
His accomplishments stretch far beyond the local community. He led significant band and partnered investments across the province involving transportation, wind power and fishing.
Chief Paul received great recognition for being a tireless champion in the community, named one of Atlantic Canada's Top 50 CEOs by Atlantic Canada Business Magazine and served as co-chairman of the Atlantic Policy Congress of First Nations Chiefs and on numerous boards.
The legacy he leaves is not just bricks and mortar but an example of how to be a great leader, earning the respect of others through hard work.