282 V O L . 7 5 P A R T 2 M A R C H 2 0 1 7 THE ADVOCATE and it jams up your joints. In the meantime, Mac and Bonnie saw the arrival of their son Bill and daughters Megan and Jane. Bonnie and Mac parented in a fashion that has created three adults of whom we would all be proud. Their house on Royal Avenue became a popular grandstand viewpoint for the annual May Day Parade through New Westminster, and many of us have accepted Mac’s hospitality and dropped by to watch the passing floats and enjoy the refreshments. Another book could be filled by Mac’s love of fishing. Over the years he fished on Vancouver Island at Port McNeil and at the Queen Charlotte Lodge on Haida Gwaii. Jim Butterworth and Jake Frizzell frequently went with him, and he and David Brine saw that the McQuarrie Hunter Labour Day partnership meeting was spent fishing off the coast of Vancouver Island and then up to Haida Gwaii. The never-forgotten experience for most of us as novices was to spend a day in the boat, as Mac gladly took us under his wing, teaching us how to prepare bait, set a line and catch a fish. It was suggested he may have been involved in adding weights to a catch that might win the daily prize. The Tyler and Hansen families started going up to Loon Lake in 1986— the family in June, “the guys” in July—and this continued for 30 years. “The guys” made sure there was one last fishing trip in the fall of 2016 … In the early 2000s Mac noticed some lumps on his neck, which Bonnie correctly diagnosed as being secondary to another lesion, likely in the throat. But test after test failed to find the primary location. Bonnie continued to assert there had to be another primary lesion and she insisted, when the doctors started what was going to be some complex surgery for removal of cancerous nodes, that they have one more look down his throat. She was right; they found the primary lesion. Bonnie gave Mac another nine years of life. He underwent radiation and chemotherapy and survived, though at tremendous cost to his large frame. He rebounded until the second round of less treatable cancer started to beset him in 2016. He enjoyed reading widely, working on puzzles and playing cards, but he was at his best in a room full of people where his deep rumbling voice would be accompanied by huge laughter. He was the life of any gathering. On Christmas and other occasions the self-taught piano player would lead the group in song. He contributed to his city with time on the Police Commission, the Advisory Planning Commission, and the Royal Columbian Hospital Foundation. He knew New Westminster and its occupants well, and he contributed his common sense to the public good.
March Pages 2017
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