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Dear family and friends of the John Oliver Historical Society:

The 5th Annual John Oliver Historical Society Reunion Social was held on Monday, October 24th, at the Oakridge (St Giles) United Church. It was a lovely autumn day. Approximately 80 persons attended with about 10 of those former JO students in their 90s. The theme of the social was the "Year of the Veteran." See the list below of those who died in World War 2. There be some errors and omissions. The list was compiled from the scrapbook kept by the JO library club during the war and also a list from one of the JO yearbooks. Because some of the persons listed as missing might have shown up alive later in a prisoner-of-war camp, etc, some of those listed below might have lived after the war. Please let us know if you recognize any errors.

We paid a special tribute to Lt Frank Perrett of the Seaforth Highlanders of Canada who enlisted with the Seaforths when Canada declared war in September, 1939 and served with the Seaforths from the time that they landed in Sicily on July 10, 1943 until they participated in the Liberation of The Netherlands. Unfortunately, Lt Perrett, who had earlier been the intelligence officer for the Seaforths and later the commanding officer of the scout and sniper platoon, was hit by a shell while in a carrier and out on a patrol on April 25, 1945. He died 3 days later on April 28. The Seaforths had finished fighting their last battle about one week earlier and would liberate Amsterdam on May 8, 1945. Dennis Meade of the Seaforth Highlanders and a friend of Frank Perrett shared some memories of Frank. One of the memories that he shared was the time when Frank, a trumpet player, entered a Canada-wide talent contest on CBC Radio in the spring of 1940. Frank and Dennis, both being too young to go overseas, were stationed in Calgary with the "diaper squad". Dennis remembers himself and some other soldiers gathered around a radio listening to Frank play the "Sugar Blues". Dennis's wife attended the JO commercial program in the latter 1930s and early 1940s.

Frank Perrat clipping

Ernie Perrault (JO '39), who was not able to attend the reunion, recalled that Frank wrote both the words and lyrics of the Jayo Song in 1937 and introduced the song ("Come on Jayo, we're rooting for you; we're for the good old red and the blue; you'll be in our hearts forever; we're always loyal and true; we are the team with spirit and pep, and we will cheer you as we go; we'll put you on the top, you bet; three cheers for old Jayo! Rah! Rah! Rah!). Ernie remembered Frank as a happy-go-lucky friendly person who had moved to Vancouver from the Prairies.

Most of those ex-JO students who died in World War 2 served in the RCAF and RAF. A significant number also died while serving with the Seaforth Highlanders of Vancouver.

The original tune of the school song was changed to that of the "Notre Dame Victory Roar" about 1947. Ken Warner, President, JO Historical Society and President, JO Student Council, 1941-42, and his wife Freda Sleigh Warner sang the original tune. Selma (Sam) Erickson McLachlan (JO '54) and Marilyn Peterson Kinghorn (JO '57) led the singing of the later version to the backup of music of the "Notre Dame Victory Roar" which I found on a karaoke disc of Irish songs.

Jean Kirk Craig, age 92, won the $338 fifty-fifty draw. She is pictured in one of the photos with Barbara Howard (Sr Matric '40). Barbara came to JO from Brittania in 1939 to complete Sr Matric. She was a two-time Sr Girls' Aggregate Winner at the V & D Inter-High Track Meet. Barbara was the first black woman to represent Canada internationally (100 and 200 metres) in the 1938 British Empire & Commonwealth Games.

Bill Griffiths (JO '50; see attached photo), our webmaster (www.jayohistory.com) and Jerry Vernon (JO '52; see JO Reunion Social B photo; Jerry is the first person on the left) set up a display along with myself on the war years.

Kay Berry (age 91; see attached photo) and two other members (average age 90) of the Richmond writers group also attended the get-together. Kay was the person who signed up a lot of the John Oliver students to the forces in the early 1940s. Kay, who grew up on Wales Rd near 45th and Victoria, wrote many articles for the South Van and South City News in the 1960s and 1070s.

Marjory Hubbard Goodburn (JO '29) was the earliest grad to attend. She is the mother of Linda (JO '58) and Susan (JO '62).

Unfortunately, Mary Campbell, whose 95th birthday we were to celebrate at the reunion was not able to attend at the last moment because her roommate died that morning. Edith had been connected to the Campbell family for more than 40 years. A memorial service is being held on November 14 (3 pm) at Mary's niece's home. Please contact Mary (604-261-6061) if you would like the address.

For the red and blue,

Ken

Gerry Vernon on left.

B.Howard & J.Craig

Webmaster Bill&Bonnie Griffiths

Mrs. Meade, Dennis & school scrap book of wartime clippings

Kay Berry

Ken and Freda Warner

Lorna (Hardy) Robb

retired Judge Wally Craig amidst a bevy of beauties!

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