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Tribute to Helen Fathers subject of special council meeting

Late White Rock councillor remembered in book of condolences presented to her daughter

Late White Rock Councillor Helen Fathers was remembered in a special meeting of council at city hall Monday night.

Mayor Megan Knight presented a book of condolences, specially prepared by city staff, to Fathers’ daughter Ellie, as Fathers’ husband Rob and mother Margaret looked on.

Fathers passed away on Feb. 8 after a lengthy battle with pancreatitis and associated complications. The spirited, no-nonsense independent, also long-time manager of the White Rock Farmers’ Market, had fought to muster the energy to continue participating in city council meetings, by video, until only a matter of weeks before her passing.

“Following Helen’s passing, the city received a great number of messages of condolences from the people who wanted to share what Helen meant to them and the positive impact she had on so many,” Knight said. “We have collected these messages in a book, along with photographs for the family.”

A slide show presentation in honour of Fathers, prepared by staff, was also played.

“I know I speak for the entire community when I say that Helen is missed, and that we are appreciative of the legacy she left in White Rock,” Knight told Ellie, Rob and Margaret.

“Helen served for four terms as a … councillor, beginning in 2008,” she added. “Many of us sitting here this evening sat on council with Helen over the years.

“She was passionate and dedicated in serving her community. If you want to feel her spirit, pay a visit to the (Farmers’ Market). (It) represents a piece of her community legacy.”

Knight noted that, in 2016, Fathers had been named market manager of the year and the White Rock market named top farmers’ market in B.C., by the B.C. Association of Farmers’ Markets.

“We have a remarkable market… and that is partly due to Helen’s years of clear vision and hard work,” Knight said.

“Helen loved that market, and she truly loved our city.”

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