Labrador West Pi­o­neers: Peter and Josephine Rogers

The Aurora (Labrador City) - - Front Page -

Over the many years that have passed since the be­gin­ning of our com­mu­nity of Labrador West, we have had many sto­ries of the paths taken by folks who have ul­ti­mately ended up on the list of folks among us who qual­ify as true pi­o­neers.

Pi­o­neers, that through the years that they have been here, mea­sured by their ac­tions, and what they have given to our com­mu­nity, they with­out any doubt are Labrador West pi­o­neers. Peter and Josephine Rogers are cer­tainly on the list.

Peter and Josephine were mar­ried on the is­land of New­found­land in 1969. Peter was from Dover in Bon­av­ista Bay. Al­though he was work­ing hard to pro­vide for his young fam­ily, the op­por­tu­nity for a more se­cure job and bet­ter money came to him through Manpower in Gan­der and he was on his way to Labrador.

He ac­cepted a job with the Iron Ore Com­pany of Canada (IOC) as a labourer. Josephine fol­lowed shortly af­ter with their Peter and Josephine Rogers

two sons in tow, ages three and six. They be­gan their new life to­gether in their new com­mu­nity, full of hope that it would last and Labrador West would — with some hard work and com­mit­ment to their new com­mu­nity — pro­vide them with a good and suc­cess­ful life.

It seems as though it worked out pretty good. Peter fin­ished a 30-year ca­reer at IOC be­gin­ning as a labourer and fin­ish­ing as a plan­ner for the com­pany in 2005.

They raised their boys, who are now adults and do­ing well for them­selves as well. One of the boys is still in Labrador City and their other boy is in Fred­er­ic­ton, New Brunswick. They also have one grand­son in Labrador City who they have ev­ery right to be very proud of.

The early years saw them busy rais­ing their fam­ily in a new min­ing com­mu­nity that, as is of­ten the case in the north, was iso­lated in terms of travel and ac­cess to many of the things that the out­side folks of­ten take for granted.

They em­braced their com­mu­nity and it too em­braced them. Life was good and they fit in just fine, quickly be­com­ing an im­por­tant part of the growth of their lives and their com­mu­nity.

They and their fam­ily were quickly en­gaged in hockey, softball, soc­cer and darts and were in­volved in the Beavers and Scouts as well. Josephine has been an ac­tive sup­porter of the Hospi­tal Aux­il­iary and the swim­ming pro­grams at the Rec Cen­ter. Peter has been an ac­tive mem­ber of the Cana­dian Rangers for 30 years in Labrador, no small gift to give to your com­mu­nity and all of Labrador.

Peter and Josephine are cabin and woods peo­ple. It’s their wheel­house. They have their cabin on Esker Road and an­other re­mote cabin in Esker. As the sea­sons come and go, they are al­ways at their cabin shar­ing the out­doors to­gether and the bounty that the woods and wa­ter pro­vides.

Fish­ing in the sum­mer and hunt­ing in the fall and win­ter is a reg­u­lar pas­time for them and their cabin friends. The cari­bou days of yes­ter­year are cer­tainly a part of the many sto­ries shared at the cabin. The ptarmi­gan, rab­bits and grouse all make some great sto­ries and great bounty in the roaster for them and those who are lucky enough to share with them.

Josephine out-fished Peter this past sum­mer with an eight­pound oua­naniche. Bet­ter luck next sea­son Peter. Don’t worry about a re­peat, sounds like Josephine can usu­ally need some­one handy with the net.

Both Peter and Josephine are quick to say that their lives have been great over all of the years. It has been a great and safe place to raise a fam­ily, a great com­mu­nity spirit to be part of and share with fam­ily and friends, who could ask for any­thing more.

The last ques­tion is as al­ways, any re­grets in liv­ing their lives in Labrador West, same an­swer as al­ways, not one.

GARY SHAW – SPE­CIAL TO THE AURORA

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