He spent almost every day of his life in the Columbia Valley, and he wouldn’t have it any other way.
Jack Brock, born in Harrogate in 1933, comes from a true valley family. His mother was born here, and his father moved to the area from Ontario in 1909 before buying a farm in Harrogate in 1928.
Brock had four siblings who started out their schooling in Harrogate.
“In Harrogate, I had to start school at five years old to keep the school open. They needed seven students, so I was the seventh student,” said Brock.
“I was failed by my teacher in Harrogate… My dad didn’t agree, he thought I had done better than that. So we moved to Golden.”
Brock started out at the “little school.” It took him three days before the teacher decided to pass him onto the next grade. He would sometimes run into former classmates around town, and they would ask him why he wasn’t in school anymore. He would say ‘oh, I’m going to the big school now.’
“But I have to say, I was in town before that. In 1939 the King and Queen came through Golden,” said Brock.
“I was just a little boy, and I couldn’t wait for the day. It was very exciting for us. So we came into town to see the train, and it just went zipping on through Golden. The Queen never even showed her face.
“That was a big thing for me at that time. I hadn’t seen a passenger train with all the coaches. Back in those days Harrogate was a long ways off.”
Brock finished up school in Golden, after a few years at the high school in Parson, and started working with his father back in Harrogate.
“We cut ties for the CPR. So I loaded a lot of ties I tell ya,” he said. After a while, he and his father bought a truck, and was able to make a special delivery for a business in Golden.
“I hauled a baking oven all the way from Marysville to Golden for the bakery. I asked Joe (Dusevic, owner of the bakery) the other day if that bake oven was still there, and he said ‘ya.’”
Brock feels very fortunate to have lived his life in this community. He has many great stories, and even more great friends. He has very fond memories of sitting up at A&W with his friend Sid Feuz, chatting about life.
“I can’t remember names, but I recognize faces. And people are always stopping me on the street to say ‘hey Jack.’ It’s a wonderful feeling that I have so many friends around that know me. I really appreciate Golden,” he said. “I love this valley, that’s one thing I do love.”