582 THE ADVOCATE
VOL. 78 PART 4 JULY 2020
spent some quality time in Whitehorse, where he became friends with the
likes of Allan Bate, John Steeves, Sr. and Harry Boyle, then the editor and
owner of the Whitehorse Star. The stories of those years and their exploits
are many and must be told over drinks, perhaps many.
His passing brought an end to the final chapter of a remarkable life highlighted
by many accomplishments and stamped with the eccentricity and
unique style that brought Allan such joy and formed a part of his reputation
as well as defining his career and its success.
Allan was born, according to him, on the wrong side of the tracks somewhere
near Winnipeg in 1931. While he rarely talked of his early years, his
early employment is somewhat clearer. After working in a number of logging
camps in northern Ontario, he left that field of endeavour to join the
R.C.A.F. (I have been unable to confirm the rumours that his enlistment
was arranged by court order.) His time in the military met with mixed success.
While he was confined to barracks for much of the time, he was able
to complete his high school education through a grade 12 equivalency program.
This was a big step, but post-secondary education held little interest
This characteristic was not because of inability or a lack of interest in
education or knowledge. Allan had a keen mind and an intellectual capacity
that constantly surprised, but he was also blessed with a restless focus and
a level of impatience that pushed him to pursue what interested him without
restraints that hampered that interest.
These varied interests caused him to pursue many things and, at times,
to end one pursuit or career and begin another. His interest in turning his
hobby ranch into something more productive caused him to do his best to
create a facsimile of Saskatchewan on the Blackwater Road west of Prince
George and turn it into a substantial dairy farm operation. Later on, after
finishing his term as Treasurer of the Law Society, Allan left his practice as
counsel and devoted himself to labour arbitration and mediation.
On leaving the Air Force he joined yet another profession and became a
member of the Merchant Marine. This experience would serve him well
later in life. Allan later attended the University of Alberta while working as
a reporter for the Edmonton Journal. He appeared to have been quite successful
as a reporter, but the significant aspect is perhaps the early demonstration
of his restless mind.
Allan graduated from UBC Law in 1961 and while attending law school
worked as the night editor for the Vancouver Sun. He articled to Victor
Dryer, who later became the Honourable Mr. Justice Victor Dryer. Upon
completion of his articles, Allan left the bright lights of Vancouver for the