Henry George Schmidt
1924 - 2009
Henry George Schmidt was born in Rencafki, Poland. He was the eldest of seven children. At the age of four years, his family emigrated to Canada. After living in Saskatchewan for a short while, they moved to Barrhead, Alberta area to start farming. Henry spent his youth helping to support his family as a farm hand, cattle herder and a hard worker on thrashing crews. At the age of 18, after being rejected by the army due to a heart condition, he rode the rails to Dawson Creek to work on the Alaska Highway.
Later, returning to Barrhead, Henry married Elfrieda Bilau and fathered three children, Brian, Wayne and Rosalyn. After becoming an automotive mechanic, he operated service stations, first in Manola, Alberta, and later in Edmonton. After a venture into house building, Henry returned to Dawson Creek in 1957 to build a motel. The following year, his family joined him. Although the motel operated at mile one of the Hart Highway for many years, Henry started looking for a new challenge almost immediately.
Starting with a single piece of equipment, he returned to the heavy construction profession he had gotten a taste of years earlier on the highway. Along with his long time partner, Martin Luck, and later, his two sons, he operated Braemer Construction and H.E. & H. Developments until his retirement. Over a span of 40 years, he installed many miles of water and sewer lines, not only in Dawson Creek, but in most towns in northeastern B.C. Even as his failing health prevented him from taking an active role, he still took an active interest in the business. On a daily basis, he would check in to see what was happening.
In the ‘70’s after Henry and Elfrieda, went their separate ways, Henry developed a taste for travelling. With his newly acquired pilot’s license, he and Brian flew around North America on a regular basis. Later, he and Roberta (Bobbie) Shore, who was to become his long time partner, travelled to numerous corners of the world, including Europe, North, Central and South America, Australia and the South Pacific.
Throughout Henry’s life, he loved his family, enjoyed a challenge, worked hard and accomplished much. In everything he did, he did it his way with a strong, no nonsense personal drive that will be long remembered.
Henry Schmidt passed away November 2, 2009 at the age of 85. A Memorial Service was held on November 12, 2009 at Bergeron Funeral Chapel, Dawson Creek, British Columbia.
Mary Sophie Henschel
Mary Henschel of Gundy, Alberta, was born Mary Sophie Nestorovich in Jarvie, Alberta in 1935. She was one of 5 sisters and 6 brothers. They lived on a farm, and attended the Cedar Creek School.
She learned to dance from her older brother John, and met her future husband Al Henschel at a country dance in Jarvie. They were married June 17, 1954. They had three children, Carol and Doug, born in Westlock, Alberta, and baby brother Mike, born in Fort St John, B.C.
Al and Mary spent several years in the Yukon Territory because of Al’s job with CN. They moved along the highway, mile 1083, 1167, 1202, and as far as Mayo, 245 miles north of Whitehorse on the Klondike Loop.
In 1963, they returned to civilization in the city of Dawson Creek. They lived in town until 1986. They became country folk in Gundy, Alberta on a small farm that sits on the edge of the BC/Alberta border. Imagine the surprise they created by moving into a geodesic domed house! Everyone refers to it as the “round house”.
They started out with 2 cows that Mary named Billy and Ginger (aka Rib Eye and T Bone) ! She continued to name every calf born on the farm, but she could never eat them.
Mom enjoyed her sports. She would faithfully watch baseball, hockey and curling games on TV. She played catcher in a recreational baseball league for several years. She was also the ultimate hockey mom for her 2 boys. Countless hours were spent driving to games, cooking perogies as a fundraiser for the team, and cheering them on in the old arena. She also coached a peewee hockey team called the Canadiens one year when there weren’t enough minor hockey coaches.
She was employed at the McLeod’s store in Dawson Creek for many years. She was the one person who knew where every tool, bolt and “whatcha m’callit” was in the store. Even though she ended up as the bookkeeper in the office, she could still find you what you needed. Her specialty was the plumbing fixtures.
Most farm people know the 4H’s, Head, Heart, Hands and Health. Mary had her own system of counting what was important. We refer to them as the 5 “F”s.
The first would be Family. Those of you, who have been to the house in Gundy, know that there are pictures of family everywhere, and new ones always being added, as her extended family grew. Several camping trips with her brothers and sisters to go fishing were so important to her these past few years. There has also been a string of Nestorovich family reunions to help keep those family ties strong, the cards flying, and stories passed on. Defending her title as the reigning Horseshoe champion was a pride.
Mom’s second F would be Food. So many family celebrations centered on traditional family recipes for things like perogies and cabbage rolls, favorite desserts and her special secret recipe for the flakiest piecrusts ever. She always cooked enough for a threshing crew. This was ingrained in mom by her mom, from her habit of always offering something to eat whenever someone would stop in to visit. Mom still has stashes of goodies in her freezer “just in case” someone stops in for coffee.
Next on the list at number 3 is Friends. The neighbours from their house up on 17th Street, the crowd of fellow parents from minor hockey, as well, there are those special friends and neighbours from the Gundy area. So many of you took the time to come and help the time pass for Mom while she was in the hospital, bringing treats and flowers to brighten her room, and share a story or some news with her.
F number 4 would have to be Flowers. She was always collecting and saving seeds wherever she went. She would plant them in her yard and try to save them from becoming deer food. Last Easter, we finally got her to come to Palm Desert in California. She absolutely loved the bougainvillea and humming birds that were all around the condo. She was also aghast at the fact that they would soon be pulling out the “winter flowers” – petunias, snapdragons, and pansies to plant the “summer flowers”. “That’s crazy! They still have lots of flowers left!” she said. And she wanted to go collect snapdragon seeds growing in the boulevard before they yanked them out!
Finally, in at number 5 is Fortune. Mom had a bit of a gambling streak. She loved to play the lottery, and occasionally hit a casino or bingo game. She would always win a little something every time she bought tickets. Most of the time she would just reinvest her winnings, hoping to hit the big one. She said if she ever did, she would set up a home for needy children. She was known to share her fortune, and would often say, “go to my wallet and get a brown one” and then give it to one of her grandkids.
Mary is survived by her husband Al and partner for 55 years, her 3 children, 7 grandchildren, 1 great-grand child, 2 sisters, 2 brothers, and countless nieces, nephews, and great nieces and nephews.
A celebration and tribute of Mary’s life was held on Saturday January 9 at 2 pm at Bergeron’s Funeral chapel with cremation following.
Expressions of sympathy in memory of Mary can be made by way of donation to:
Dawson Creek and District Hospital Cancer Unit 11100-13 St, Dawson Creek BC V1G 4T1 or the Canadian Cancer Society 1000 105 Ave, Dawson Creek BC V1G 2L
Memorial arrangements were entrusted to Bergeron Funeral Services & Crematorium Ltd, Dawson Creek, British Columbia 250-782-2577or toll free 1 (800) 577-4877
Margrit Mary Marion “Grandma 2”
1922 - 2010
Margrit Mary Marion was born on July 4, 1922 in Lethbridge Alberta. Margrit was the first born child to Leslie and Mary Ann Racine from Southern Alberta. Margrit’s only sibling Pearl, followed 7 years later.
Margrit Marion was commonly known by all of her friends as Margo. But to her family, she was affectionately known as “Grandma Two”. As a young child, Margo traveled with her parents during the construction of the Northern Alberta Railroad in the late 1920’s. Her parents wanted to ensure that she was continuing her education and so they enrolled Margo in schools along the way such as Hythe and Beaverlodge. The Racine Family eventually arrived in the Dawson Creek area in 1930 and began to settle into a rural family life.
In 1933 at the age of 11 Margo’s childhood changed when her mother passed away in the old St. Josephs hospital of Dawson Creek. Margo’s sister Pearl went to live with Mrs. Edwards, who was fondly known as Aunt Kate, while Margo was sent to the Convent in Peace River. While at the Convent Margo received vocal instruction from the nuns and how to read and play music from the Convents groundskeeper.
In 1934 at the age of twelve, while performing a solo at the Convent’s Mass service, a manager from the Edmonton radio station CFCA heard Margo sing. The manager arranged for Margo to audition for a 15 min Radio program in Edmonton, when she got the job Margo became known to the radio as “Texas Rose”. While in Edmonton Margo went to live with her uncle Pete. During her years as a radio personality the station held a contest to see if the listening audience could guess Margo’s age. When the results came in her listening fans believed Margo to be somewhere between 20 and 35 years of age, but of course at the time, she was only 12. When Margo was 15 she returned to live with her father at the st. Georges ranch in Goodfare Alberta and began to learn a ranchers way of life.
At 17 she traveled back to Dawson Creek to be with her sister Pearl who was now 10 and still living with Mrs. Edwards. Margo found a job at the local general store and while working there met the love of her life Morris Pearson, better known as “Tiny”. In the early 1940’s Margo and Tiny ventured to Vancouver along with another couple to take-on the challenges a new and exciting future. With the motor vehicle technology of the times, you can only imagine there were a few mishaps along the way.
One story Margo loved to tell, was when their car began overheating and they had no water for the radiator, plan B, was for Tiny to pee into the reservoir. As legend has it, the radiator never leaked another drop.
When Margo arrived in Vancouver, she lived at a local boarding house until Margo and Tiny were married in December of 1941.By the time they arrived in Vancouver, the war was in full swing. Tiny was building war ships at the docks, while Margo was at home preparing for the birth of her twins. Unfortunately for the family, only one of the twins survived, Margo’s only daughter, Morine. While in the Vancouver hospital, the nurses came to ask Margo if she would mind donating her extra milk to another families baby, as the mother had no milk and the baby was starving. Being the person she was, Margo jumped at the chance to help out another mother. After Margo left the hospital with Morine, Tiny got involved and everyday he delivered bottles to the hospital on his way to work, Tiny became known as the milkman. While they were living in a boat house, In North Vancouver and when Morine was 3, the family decided to foster two young boys for a period of approx. 3 years.
In 1948 Margo and Tiny began work on their new home in the North Vancouver, Deep Cove area which took several years to complete, as Tiny would not take on a mortgage to finish the project. Thru Margo and Tiny’s friends the McCormicks, she met a man named Tex, who then taught Margo how to play the wooden steel lap guitar, which renewed her interests in music. Thru Tex Margo also met Chief Dan George and numerous other musicians where she was invited to perform benefit concerts. The concerts were organized to raise money to build a catholic church on the Burrard Indian reserve, the church being completed in 1953.
During her time working with the Native community, Margo met a lot of the local women and realized that they did not know how to properly carry out the decorative bead work. So Margo got involved and taught them her techniques, today the band is widely known for their beautiful costume work. The relationships that she built at that time would last all her life and continued to be a source of pleasured remembrance.
Margo and Tiny were avid hunters and during one trip back to the peace country they decided to travel the new, John Hart highway which unfortunately was not paved or even gravelled passed 100 hundred mile house junction. The summer of 1952 was a wet year and getting thru the swails in the road took a great effort from them both. At one point Margo remembered getting out of the car, pulling her pants up to her hips wading into the mud to guide Tiny thru the ruts of the road.
After arriving in Pouce Coupe, they took Morine out to Doe River to visit Russel and Minnie Albright and that is when at Ten years old, Morine met her future husband Jack Albright for the first time. Morine also met her Pearson half brothers and sister for the first time, for Margo had always considered them proudly as her own. Morine and Jack were married in 1964 in North Vancouver and they moved back to the farm in Doe River to start their lives together. Jack and Morine had two girls Alana in 1966 and Nadine in 1970. In late 1970, the decision to move to the peace country and the selling of their home had been started when Tiny got ill and passed away in April of 1971. Margo followed thru on their plans and moved in May of that same year and laid Tiny to rest in the Rolla cemetary.
After moving back to Dawson Margo became reacquainted with her childhood friend Bernard Marion. They later married, and after a lengthy illness Bernard passed away peacefully at their home. Margo continued to be active in her community and the Royal Canadian Legion was one of her memorable interests. Being that Margo’s father and husband were both veterans, it cleared the way for her to become an associate member. Margo held numerous volunteer positions including a liaison officer for the air cadets’ squadron 353, which was by far her favourite position.
In 1972 the not so famous music group “The Auroras” grew out of Jack and Morine’s back yard when Margo, Morine and their neighbour Karen decided to get together and jam. The first gig they played was for the legion zone meeting. This was to be the first of many, and as their popularity grew they needed a new name and MARGOS Northern Lights were born. Over the years many musicians came and went but her love for the music remained until her bands retirement in 1980.
In 1986 Margo bought a hair salon and named it Chez Maries which Margo, Morine and Alana worked in until it was sold in 2000. On the odd occasion, you may have even caught Jack washing some young widow’s hair.
Margo’s first great grandchild Kyle was born in 1989 and was getting confused at the amount of grandmothers that he had in his small world, so he came up with the title of grandma “2”. Margo proudly took on the name and told anyone who would listen the story of her new handle.
Margo uprooted her trailer one more time to Jack and Morine’s acreage in 1998. At 76 she was still very active and wanted to travel but not without her family. Jack being a truck driver was always on a schedule, so Margo bought a new mobile unit, A Winnebago. This enabled her to sleep as late as she wanted without driving Jack crazy trying to get her out of bed.
Margo is predeceased by her beloved husband Tiny Pearson and Bernard Marion.Her sister Pearl Martel, and step children Charlie, Morris and Melvin Pearson.She will be fondly remembered by her family Morine and Jack Albright. Her granddaughters:Alana and Billy Copeland and their children, Bailey, Brooke and Wyatte. Nadine and Michael Pace and their children, Kyle, Braydon and Jesse. Her step children Clifford Pearson and Lenore Keyes (Pearson) .
Being the woman that she was, kind, compassionate, head strong, always there, a person that would share with you her opinion good or indifferent, but would be there to support you in any capacity in times of need. Margo will be missed by her family, her friends and all that she knew, for there will only ever be, one Grandma “2”.
Margo leaves behind to mourn her; daughter, Morine (Jack) Albright; step-son, Clifford Pearson; Step-daughter, Lenore Keyes; grandchildren, Alana (Billy) Copeland, Nadine (Michael) Pace, and 16 step-grandchildren; great-grandchildren, Bailie, Brooke and Wyatte Copeland, Kyle, Braydon and Jesse Pace; as well as many nieces and nephews.
Margo was predeceased by her husbands; Morris Pearson and Bernard Marion.
A Funeral Mass was held on Wednesday, January 13, 2010 at the Notre Dame Roman Catholic Church in Dawson Creek, British Columbia.
Ladmer (Larry) Mathew Shymko
1931 - 2009
Larry Shymko passed away with his family by his side, losing his battle with cancer on November 14, 2009.
Larry was born at home Feb 19, 1931 in Bladworth Saskatchewan, he was the second of four sons for Adolf and Anne Shymko. Larry was predeceased by his mother Anne Zwarich in 1935, his father Adolf 1995, brothers; Nicholas 1982, Anthony 1996 and Johnny 2003.
Larry moved to the Dawson Creek area in his early 20’s where he met and married Nancy Myhre, they had 5 children Cathy, Cindy, Sharon, Jo Ann and Glenn. Larry worked for years in the hotel business and later for many years as well for the City of Dawson Creek. He loved living in Dawson Creek as he felt the residents of this city were the most friendly and caring that he had the opportunity to meet. Many friendships were cultivated over the years, making this city his home; his favorite routine would be the morning coffee with the Co-op crowd. Over the last few years Larry has hung his hat at the Pouce Coupe Care Home in which he would tell you had the best care givers in the world. The family thanks them for making these past few years very comfortable for him.
Larry will be remembered in the hearts of his family forever. He leaves to mourn his; daughters Cathy Breault, Cindy Dostal, Sharon (Charles) Johnstone, Jo Ann (Kevin) Porter; and son Glenn (Tanya) Shymko; grandchildren Vanessa, Evan, Janine, Shannon, Quinton, Justin, Haydn, Jared, Megan, Tyler, Kyle, Lalia and Kaitlyn; great-grandchildren Jordan, Layla, Carissa, Elijah, Eden and Gabriel.
Larry was cremated and at this time no service will be held.
George Miller Clark
1924 - 2009
George Clark, reisident of Dawson Creek, British Columbia, passed away on Saturday, November 21, 2009 in Dawson Creek.
A Memorial service was be held on Saturday, November 28, 2009 at 11:00 am at the Northern Lights Christian Fellowship Church, 4908 - 47th street, Chetwynd, British Columbia.
Blair William Tulloch
1953 - 2009
Blair Tolloch, resident of Sexsmith, Alberta, passed away November 13, 2009 in Edmonton, Alberta.
No Service was held.
Sydney Rupert Sparks
1926 - 2009
Sidney Rupert Sparks, resident of Taylor, passed away on Friday October 23, 2009 at 83 years of age.
A Memorial service was held on Friday, November 6, 2009 at 7:00 pm at the Bergeron Funeral Chapel, Dawson Creek, British Columbia.
Expressions of sympathy in memory of Sydney, may be made by way of a donation to
“The Lung Association of B.C.”