A half-century of community involvement was acknowledged recently when Norm Husband was named Creston Valley’s 2011-2012 citizen of the year.
“Our citizen of the year is truly a gentleman, and I am sure he has touched many lives from the Creston Valley to Europe, where he served our country in World War II,” said Creston Valley Rotary Club president George Green on the opening night of the Creston Valley Blossom Festival. “Ladies and gentlemen, I am truly honoured to have the privilege to you the Creston Valley citizen of the year, Mr. Norm Husband.
Husband was born in 1924 in Pleasant Home, Ore., to Canadian parents. The family, with seven children, moved to Alice Siding in 1930 and Norm attended Adam Robertson Elementary School.
After completing the tenth grade at age 17, Husband joined the Royal Canadian Air Force. While he wanted to be an air gunner, his height prevented him from that position, which requires long hours in cramped spaces. Instead, he became a cook, following in his father’s footsteps.
He was first posted in Vancouver, but was soon transferred to Dauphin, Man. Later, he served overseas in England, Belgium, Holland and Germany.
In England, he met Rose, who became his first wife after they returned to Canada. After holding cooking jobs that often took him away from Creston, Husband worked in sales positions before starting Husband Plumbing. Rose died of cancer after 30 years of marriage.
In 1980, Husband married Kay, and together they have been popular and hard-working Creston citizens.
Green cited some of Husband’s many volunteer activities. He served on the Creston Valley Hospital board from 1970-1977, and the rec centre board from 1970-1999. He was on the Endicott centre and Swan Valley Lodge boards and served as president of the Creston branch of the Royal Canadian Legion. Husband was a Creston town councillor from 1991-1998.
Husband became Creston’s 42nd citizen of the year during Blossom Festival. The award was first started by the Kiwanis Club, which made the selection for more than 30 years. The award is now co-ordinated by the Creston Valley Rotary Club, which solicits nominations of citizens from the public each year.
The citizen of the year is selected by an anonymous panel of judges, which includes former winners and citizens of the community. Nominations for unsuccessful candidates are held over for consideration in the following year.
Husband received flowers from Morris Flowers, a Town of Creston parking pass, a gift basket from Pharmasave, and dinners for two from ABC Family Restaurant, Broaster House, Renee’s Main Street Diner, Kootenay Thai Restaurant, A Break in Time Caffé, and Creston Country Family Restaurant. He was also presented with two tickets to the upcoming Creston Valley Rotary’s Club’s annual wine art fundraiser.