Terry Noel gets ready for retirement

BARRY’S BAY – After 53 years in the business, barber Terry Noel is closing up shop when he retires this August.

A resident of Barry’s Bay since 1980, Noel will put down his scissors on August 29. Speaking with the Gazette, he shared a few memories of his time as a barber and plans for his retirement.

Noel spent his early years in Timmins, Ontario. Like so many others before him, and indeed to this day, Noel wasn’t quite sure what to do once he finished high school.

“The only jobs up there were in the mines or the trades,” said Noel. They didn’t hold much appeal to him. “You didn’t see people smiling when they went off to work in the mines. They smiled at the end of the day, when they all got back safe, though.”

One cold winter, he went in for a haircut at the local barbershop.

“I went into the barbershop – it was 40 below that day – and the barber said, ‘What do you want to do?’ Just for a joke I said I was going to be a barber,” he adds with a laugh.

But the barber on that cold winter’s day was encouraging, and so was Noel’s father. In 1960, Noel went to barber school in Ottawa.

“I got my barber’s license in 1961,” says Noel.

His mother being from the Madawaska Valley, Noel had spent countless summers in Barry’s Bay and the surrounding communities.

Get your July 30 , 2014 edition of The Valley Gazette to read more of this story.