A remembrance of Peter Jennings.
It is with deepest regret that I must announce the sudden passing of Peter H Jennings. Peter was born at The Warren, Stafford, England in July of 1923 and left us gently in the early morning hours of June 16th 2016. Peter immigrated to Canada as a young man and worked for many years as a researcher for Noranda Mines. In those years he lived in Montreal, and those he met there through his interest in hiking would shape the rest of his life.
Peter wanted to retire to BC and with the help of a man who would remain his friend for life, Gerald King, he chose a beautiful rural piece of property that bordered the Perry River, east of Malakwa, and settled in to a completely different lifestyle there some forty odd years ago. With the help of visiting family and friends he built himself a sturdy house set in a pretty clearing where the only sound heard is the soft whooshing of the river nearby and the singing of the birds.
Peter had a keen interest in the welfare of animals and played a large role as both a volunteer and a funder for many years with the Shuswap SPCA, an organization he was passionate about. Many, many rescue animals lived out the rest of their lives happily and well cared for at “Peter’s Place”.
Peter was also a talented pianist and taught music to many Malakwa area children. He wrote several beautiful operettas, and two of them, The Last Spike, and The Champion were performed by what was then The Eagle Valley Music and Drama Company, to rave reviews. His love of classical music helped him to cope with his decreasing vision and mobility in his last years, and he spent many hours listening to his favourites.
Peter and his friends built trails all over his land for hiking and a number of years ago he began to think about leaving the land as a park for all to enjoy. Working with Rhona Martin, the CSRD Area E Director, that dream became a reality and the park soon to be dedicated as “North Fork Wild” was born. The Shuswap Trail Alliance crews and administration, and the many groups that have used the trails since then gave Peter many new friendships during these last years.
Peter was predeceased by his sisters Catherine and Hazel, and leaves behind his nephew Graham Henderson, and niece Anne Paget as well as other nieces and nephews, all in England. Though alone here in Canada, Peter retained strong connections with his family and friends in England, and was visited and called regularly by many.
It was a great honour to have known Peter, and the gifts he gave this area will be enjoyed by many generations to come. There will be a celebration of Peter’s life to follow the dedication of North Fork Wild this fall, and we would love to gather together the memories, stories and photos from those whose life he touched. Please call the Eagle Valley Community Support Society in Sicamous at 250-836-3440 or email firstname.lastname@example.org to let us know that you have something to share.
Rest in peace my dear friend, though I knew you well for only a few years recently, your beautiful mind, spirit, and the thoughtful way you lived your life touched me deeply.