Arnold Joseph Henry Benty, known as Arnie to most of Golden, came to Golden in 1970 out of a desire to live in the mountains with his wife Ellen.
Benty was born in Love, Saskatchewan on Valentines Day.
He met his wife through his sister after a miscommunication about who he was looking to invite over to their house.
“I went to a show with my brother one night. We started talking to these three girls and when I got home my sister said she knew them even though we did not know their names. So I told her to invite them over one night and when they walked in my sister had invited three different girls. That is how I met Ellen and about three years later we were married,” he said.
Benty and his wife both loved the outdoors and had a connection that made moving to Golden easier.
“We knew six families here and I wanted to go hunting while my wife wanted to take up skiing. We wanted to go to the mountains, buy some land, build a log house and get a horse. So we did,” he said. “When we first came here in 1966 it was the first time I ever paid 50 cents for a gallon of gasoline. We went to Radium because it was the in thing to do on Boxing Day. On the way home I realized I should have gassed up because in Golden it was 50 cents. I could not believe it.”
Benty had little trouble getting settled in a job when he came to town.
“I worked in the bush for a month or so before I got a job in the mill in the boiler room. I was there for 26 years.”
Benty explained that Donald was still a fairly big place when he started working out there.
“There were 300 or 400 people in town and up to 1,000 at its peak. It was fun working there. I enjoyed my job. If everything was going well in the boiler room we had it easy. If it wasn’t you needed help.”
Working in the boiler room was eventful for Benty during his time in Donald.
“The boiler was run on wood so you could not shut it down because something goes wrong. We had to repair things when it was running. You have to be careful,” he said.
Benty said he remembered a time where he and his boss had to get into the boiler when it was working and replace a piece.
“We soaked our clothes in water and wore wet masks over our faces. The watchmen stood by with the water hose and we stood on a plank to get the boiler fixed to keep the mill running.”
As for Golden, Benty said things really haven’ changed much in the town since he moved here.
“There aren’t a lot more people living here than when we moved here but a lot of buildings have been built as second homes. Family structure has changed with not as many kids in the family.”
One thing he enjoys doing since retiring is taking walks and drinking coffee with friends.
“I get up and walk at about 5:30 in the morning to whatever restaurants are open to have coffee. One morning I went to Tim Hortons, Husky, Legend’s Diner, the bakery in town and then Jita’s for coffee. It is fun to pop out for gossip in one place that you do not hear at another,” Benty said laughing.
Over the years Benty and Ellen have raised five children in Golden. At one time six members of the family worked for Evens.
“Two were at the mill and two were doing clean up while I was there and my wife was planting trees for the company,” he said. “We got six annual reports one year and that was the most for one family.”