REPORTING · 15th December 2011
It was not a sombre event, which brought the people of Kitimat to the Catholic Church on Tuesday, December 13th, but a well put together send off for a hard worker and a kind man from the community of Kitimat.
Family, friends, co-workers and well wishers came out to say their final farewell to School Board Chair, Barry Pankhurst who passed away in Vancouver last week. Barry Pankhurst served his community and region for 17 years as a trustee and as the Chairman, for the Coast Mountain School District.
His family painted a picture of Barry as being a kind family man who dedicated his life to the school system in Kitimat. He maintained quality education for students who have special needs as well as an alternative high school. There are many people who are better off for the work he did.
The respect earned by Pankhurst was echoed by who attended; people not just from Kitimat but from Terrace as well. Several City Councillors from Terrace were in attendance, as was the Mayor of Terrace, Dave Pernarowski, and MLA Robin Austin. Also present were members of the Advisory Recreation Commission, on which Barry served, as were teachers and fellow Trustees.
A few days before the funeral the School District announced the School Board Chair, Barry Pankhurst, was being granted one of the greatest honours in the Districts history. This honour being the closure of several schools in the community for the afternoon of his funeral so teachers and students could attend.