Clearwater resident Mabel Arbour celebrated her 99th birthday on Wednesday, Nov. 20.
She was originally from McBride, where her parents, Pearl and Richard Woods, built the first house in the community.
Her father was a carpenter and after her parents split up, her mother raised sheep on her farm near McBride. Mabel grew up there as an only child.
Children today are too spoiled, she says, and recalls getting an orange as a Christmas present one year.
She stayed in McBride for several years, then lived in Prince George, Monte Lake, Vernon and Kamloops.
She now lives in Clearwater with her daughter, Pearl McRae. Her son, Ted Arbour, lives in Campbell River.
This past summer the family took Mabel back to McBride to help celebrate that community’s 100th anniversary. One of the houses Richard Woods built is still standing and being well cared for, Pearl McRae reported.
“My grandmother was one tough lady and she raised one too,” McRae said. “It wasn’t an easy life. You did what you had to do to get food on the table.”