Martin, Lesra

Martin, Lesra

Lesra Martin, born in 1963 in Queens, New York. Despite passing school, he remained illiterate until he was sixteen. Regardless, Lesra was always keen to learn especially after a near-death fall from a five-storey building when he was 12.

His life changed when a group of Canadian entrepreneurs offered to help with his education in Canada after realizing his potential. He graduated high school in Ontario and received a BA (Honours) in Anthropology from the University of Toronto. He went on to obtain a law degree from Dalhousie University.

Martin became involved with the release of Rubin “Hurricane” Carter after serving 22 years in prison. With the help of the Canadian group, Carter was released in1983.

Martin’s story is portrayed in the film The Hurricane starring Denzel Washington as Carter. The National Film Board also produced The Journey of Lesra Martin.

He and his wife Cheryl have practiced law in Kamloops for over ten years.

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Chamberlain, James

Chamberlain, James

James was an aerospace designer and engineer (b 23 May 1915, Kamloops; d 8 Mar 1981, Houston, TX). He was educated at the University of Toronto and the Imperial College of Science and Technology in London England. James help engineer the ill-fated R.C.A.F. Avro Arrow. He and about 2,000 other engineers worked eight years to get the CF-105 supersonic Arrow interceptor into production as the world’s fastest jet fighter. Prime Minister John Diefenbaker scrapped the entire operation in 1959. Scrapping of the Arrow threw thousands out of work and Canada lost 100 key engineers to the U.S. and Britain. James and 23 other engineers promptly went to the U.S. and went to work with N.A.S.A. where he worked on the Mercury capsule in which astronaut John Glenn orbited the earth three times in 1962. Despite being the most advanced plane in the world, James had no regrets about the Arrow