REPORTING · 30th January 2014
Walter Thorne launched his new book, Kitimat Chronicle’s Volume 2 at the Kitimat Museum and Archives on Friday, January 24th with a slide show of photos from the book. Thorne worked on the book with Dirk Mendel, a former Kitimat resident who lives in Smithers.
“There are 19 [stories] and that’s the same as the first book, numbered 20-38. It sounds the same but it’s actually a little longer. Gisela Mendal’s story is a long story. There’s more pictures too. This time around, we have a forward and there is a little more sophistication involved than the first one,” said Thorne.
The largest story in the book is in three parts on Gisela Mendel, from Europe to Kitimat to Smithers. “It’s kind of one of the highlights in a way,” said Thorne.
The book also includes the story of espionage and spies in Kemano given by Walter Schmidt who was employed by the RCMP as a spy to infiltrate the communists in Kemano who were planning to blow up the Kemano Powerhouse with dynamite.
There are plans for Chronicle’s Three. Thorne says he is driven by an interest in Kitimat’s past. He has a passion for history and expressed local heritage tends to be neglected. “The story needs to be told,” said Thorne.