Each year the Barriere Investors Group Walk for Alzheimer’s is held in honour of someone in our community. This year the Barriere Walk honouree is Joyce Harrington.
Harrington’s early life sounds a bit like the line in the Johnny Cash song: “I’ve been everywhere.”
Born in 1942 in Waltham, Massachusetts, she also lived in New Hampshire, Vermont, Massachusetts and New Jersey before moving back to Boston, then back to Vermont, and then on to Colorado, Seattle and Saudi Arabia, before settling in Vancouver in about 1970.
In 1990, she realized her dream of operating a ski lodge when she and her husband Bill purchased Helmcken Falls Lodge at the entrance to Wells Gray Provincial Park near Clearwater.
Joyce moved up to operate the lodge and became very involved in the community, where she was known for being extremely active outdoors as well as being helpful, tenacious and caring. She participated in the Chamber of Commerce and Yellowhead Community Services, as well as the local cross-country ski club. Under her stewardship the resort grew from a summer destination to a popular ski lodge, as cross-country skiing became a big attraction in the park.
Joyce was diagnosed with mild cognitive impairment about five years ago, but she continues to be active in the community, creating crafts to sell at local fairs.
She has enjoyed taking part in Alzheimer Society of B.C. support programs since her diagnosis.
“I go to the meetings once a month in Kamloops, and whenever possible some of the family comes,” she says.
Her daughter Karin Quinn adds that the family has attended society information seminars as well.
“It’s a wonderful place to go and be with other people with the same or similar conditions,” says Joyce. “We share coping skills. We talk about what we can do, what we can’t do, and give each other ideas of how to be able to cope anyway.
“It’s just a tremendous support. Sometimes somebody will come up with an idea that nobody else had thought of before. It makes it easier to realize that there are ways of living with Alzheimer’s.”
Join Barriere and area residents in honouring Joyce Harrington – along with all individuals and caregivers affected by dementia – at the 2017 Investors Group Walk for Alzheimer’s.
Please join in the walk, or sponsor someone who is – and make memories matter.
Date: Sunday, May 7. Registration is at 10 a.m., walk starts at 11 a.m. – 1 p.m.
This year’s event will be held in a new venue. It will take place at the North Thompson Fall Fair Grounds, Fall Fair Hall, 677 Barriere Lakes Road, Barriere.
For information call Liz Gilbertson 250-672-9337 or Margaret Houben at 250-672-9330 or email her at:firstname.lastname@example.org