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Saint Lucia Business Pioneer Arnott Valmont Is 104

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Long-serving Saint Lucia businessman and philanthropist Arnott Valmont celebrated his 104th birthday this week.

Family members cited his frequent ‘power naps,’ exercise, and diet as reasons for his longevity.

His daily routine at 5 am was a jog along the Vigie stretch.

Arnott Francois Valmont was born on July 9, 1920, the third of ten children of William and Vanessa Valmont.

In 1942, he married Muriel Etherlkine (Olive) Valmont (nee Edwards), his lifelong companion and business partner. The union produced eight children, all of whom have worked at one time or another in the family business.

Mr. Valmont first worked on the family estate, then as a store clerk at J.Q Charles Limited.

The late J.Q. Charles, another outstanding Saint Lucian businessman, was Valmont’s first cousin.

In the 1940s, Valmont became a nightclub owner and later established the retail department store chain A.F. Valmont and Co. Ltd.

At its peak, the chain sold haberdashery, clothing and accessories, cosmetics, books and school supplies, furniture, hardware, and building supplies.

Valmont has been a shareholder or director in other companies, including Windward Island Gases Limited, and a founding member of several organisations, including the St. Lucia Yacht Club and the Rotary Club.

He was awarded the Saint Lucia Cross (Gold) in 2007 and cited simplicity, hard work, and integrity as his guiding principles.

The long-serving businessman who never shied away from hard work has, understandably, slowed down at 104, but he is still passionate about cricket and follows the game.

He uses a motorised scooter to get around, and although an illness in April affected his speech, he is still able to communicate.

Prime Minister Philip J. Pierre visited the centenarian on Tuesday to celebrate his 104th birthday with him.

“We reminisced about his pioneering work in commerce and philanthropic endeavours in Saint Lucia,” Pierre wrote on Facebook, thanking Valmont for his service to Saint Lucia.

 

 

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4 COMMENTS

  1. Super entrepreneurs such as A. F. Valmont, J. Q.Charles, Carasco, Balboa Edwards, the Adjodha’s, the Gidharry’s, William Peter – and a host of past prominent St Lucian business people should really be emulated in the island schools – to give students an insight of what CAN BE achieved with hard work and dedication, Even the expat business people who helped to mold and shape St Lucian businesses: Stan Mullings, Renwick, John Scott and a host of others. Ask any 20 – 30 year old who these business people are, and wait for the answers.

  2. @So Sue Me you are correct – as the Educator sang “I feeling sorry for the youth economy in St. Lucia” – as SOME of them have absolutely no knowledge regarding the St. Lucian forerunners commitment and sacrifice.

    They want everything overnight – they want to youtube and blog their way through life and God knows what else. Godspeed.

  3. Mr. Valmont is among my favorite St. Lucian business people. Always admired his energy. I never had a conversation with him, however, I watched him one day as a child interacting with my mom during a shoe purchase. There are quite a few local business people who are formidable role models. These people, without knowing do have an impact on young people. Especially for males in homes with absentee fathers. Such was my case. I wish Mr. Valmont well.

    Mr. Valmont and many of the old school business people had patience. They built their wealth slowly and steadily. This selected few are a dying breed. Too many of the new generation want to be rich now… pronto…ahora! To that end, they will raise prices, engage in unethical behaviors and outright steal. They have not fully understand business.

  4. Wow. Years well lived. These persons saw a future in st lucia. It woukd have been nice if others followered their example especially with all this technology we have at our fingertips and our st lucian studients in every “corner” of the globe

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