Doreen (Huck) Thompson, 1944-2006:
Doreen’s grandparents, William Edward Huck and Mabel Wells Huck, arrived on Cortes Island in 1915. Widowed in WWI, Mabel and her four children left Cortes for Vancouver in 1923. Her son Harry, Doreen’s father, returned to Cortes in the 1930s. He married Edith Launchbury in 1937 and they had two children, Doreen (b.1944) and Ed (b.1945, d.1993). Doreen and Ed were raised in Whaletown and attended school there and at Manson’s.
Doreen graduated from Vic High in Victoria before marrying Bob Thompson in 1962. From 1961 to 1963, Doreen lived in Teakerne Arm in a floathouse Bob had built on the shore of the Whaletown Lagoon and then moved to the shores of Heriot Bay on Quadra Island. Her children were born in 1964 (Janny) and 1965 (Debby). In 1970 the family and the house moved to Cortes Island where both daughters attended school to Grade 10.
Doreen spent a few years living in Alberta and Victoria in the early 1980s and then returned to Cortes Island. Doreen developed a deep knowledge of the history of the island and she devoted considerable time to preserving, gathering and sharing her own and others knowledge of the island through her volunteer work at the Cortes Island Museum and Archives.
Doreen was one of the founders of the Cortes Island Museum. She curated four exhibits at the Museum, including “Windows on Whaletown” in 1999, “Von Donop Inlet”, the commercial fishing portion of “Celebrating Wild Salmon”, and “Memories of Manson’s Landing”. She researched and created albums which combine photographs, reminiscences and clippings to document the history of various island areas, such as Green Valley and Whaletown. The Doreen Thompson Exhibit Gallery at the Museum commemorates her contributions.
Doreen was making a fourth cross-Canada road trip from Cortes to Newfoundland when she was killed in a car accident near Fort McLeod, Alberta on August 1, 2006.