Thomas John (Jack) Hodgson

Cariboo pioneer Thomas John (Jack) Hodgson died February 23, 2006.

Jack was born December 24, 1916 at 150 Mile House above what he liked to call a “beer parlour.”

The house he was born in belonged to a local doctor at the time and was later incorporated into what is today the 150 Mile Roadhouse.

At the time Jack was born Williams Lake didn’t yet exist. Jack moved to the area now known as South Lakeside with his family when he was quite young. And apparently when the Hodgsons moved into the budding town there were enough kids to start a school.

While growing up Jack was involved in the Boy Scouts and attained the highest level, King Scout. He also won a plaque in a swimming race across Williams Lake which must have been quite a feat seeing as he swam side stroke.

For many years Jack helped his father and two brothers, Wilf and Patrick (Cookie), run T.J. Hodgson and Sons Trucking, which transported mail, goods and people throughout the Chilcotin. At one time it was the longest mail route in the British Empire.

In 1939 Jack went off to the Second World War serving in the Tank Corps. On his return in 1945 he rejoined the family business and married Pat Murphy in 1952.

In 1953 Jack and Pat moved to North Vancouver to raise their family, “Winks,” John and Sue. Jack worked as a heavy duty mechanic on construction sites, one of which was the building of the Upper Levels Highway. Eventually he moved on to the waterfront; first at Vancouver Wharves and then to Neptune Terminals, where he stayed until retirement at 62.

In addition to Pat, Winks, John, and Sue, Jack is survived by his sons-in-law Alex and Doug; John’s fiancé Yoshinko; grandchildren Natalie, Sean and John; sisters Phyllis and Betty Jean; many nieces and nephews and cousins. He was predeceased by brothers, Wilf and Cookie and sister, Marjorie.

A memorial service was held Saturday, March 4 at 2 p.m. at the Royal Canadian Legion in North Vancouver.

Jack liked nothing better than to tell stories of the old days in the Cariboo-Chilcotin and his family and friends will miss hearing them.

In lieu of flowers the family would like donations in his memory to go to the Museum of the Cariboo-Chilcotin in Williams Lake.