Conversations with Mary - Gordon Galloway
Elkford resident, Gordon Galloway is a lifelong volunteer racking up over 100 years of dedication to a combined number of organizations. This includes minor hockey, ball, snowmobile patrol and club, snow a rama, BCSF, provincial emergency program coordinator, core process, SRMAC, ATV club, patrol and jamborees, trail maintenance, executive positions with ATV/BC, and Teck community advisory committee.
At 72 Gordon still participates as chief instructor for the Canadian All Terrain Quad council of Canada Safety Institute for all terrain and utility terrain vehicles, is president of the ATV Club, and director and chair of several committees for ATV/BC. Born in Trail, the oldest of three children from parents of English and Swiss descent Gordon spent his growing up years in Fruitvale. He was a member of the Trail Air Cadets until age 18 when he became employed with Cominco as carpentry and millwright apprentice. He met his wife Audrey from Rossland at high school dances and after a four year courtship they married. They have a son Jim who lives with his family in Westbank and one granddaughter. Gordon transferred to Elkford when the Fording River mine was built. Both he and Audrey were employed at the River until retirement a few years ago. Gordon says he quit school but returned to get his grade 12 until finding full time work at Cominco. “I snowmobiled all my life and rode ATVs the rest,” he says of his love of sports. “I’ve had eight quads, ride 4,000 km a year, more with the snowmobile. In 1992 I rode from Tumbler Ridge to Fairbanks, Alaska with 27 others. It was cold, no groomed trails, we rode on whatever we could find. We had highway support in case of breakdown, and a bus, that’s how we returned home. Another trip was from Ontario to New Brunswick, seven days but those were all groomed trails.” Gordon and Audrey also enjoyed racing, spending time in Washington, Cranbrook and Trail raceways. “I was racing when the plane crashed in Cranbrook,” Gordon says recalling the tragic event. They also drove dirt cars at Northwestern Superstock. “I had good years in the mine and smelter, spent the first 10 years in Trail, second 10 in the process plant in supervision of maintenance of shovels, drills, cranes and crushers, then in the shop supervising small groups in different areas as well as doing scheduling and injury recording that tied in with safe work procedures.” Gordon’s blue eyes light up as he speaks of work, obviously a man who enjoys challenges of all kinds. For 11 years he was owner of the Lamplighter Pub. “I had the wrong people managing it, I ended up selling it, more of a giveaway. Looking back, I don’t know if I did it right, I needed to be there more.” He reminisces about the Jamborees, “four to five days of riding, 200 quad riders of B.C. in Elkford for the AGM. I am the only chief instructor west of Ontario, trained 11 in B.C, seven in Alberta and one in Saskatchewan in the past two-and-a-half years. Waiting for Manitoba now,” he says with a smile. He doesn’t say that he is also the safety director and CSC certified instructor for the ATV Association of B.C. “When Big Weary closed I worked with MLA Bennett, Doug Martin and the Ministry to reopen two months of the year.” He has gone on a couple of rides with CO Trish Burley to look for compliancy in areas. “I wear the vest so when I see people doing something they shouldn’t be I can stop and talk to them,” he says. Gordon has a deep love of community; he is a businessman and volunteer extraordinaire working for organizations and charitable causes. It is individuals like Gordon that make towns real communities. Recently Gordon and Audrey celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary. Sincere congratulations on this milestone achievement.