RHODA DELUCA

What makes Fernie special to me?

The minute we rolled into town 25 years ago, I looked around, took a deep breath and said, “Wow!  This is absolutely breathtaking!”.  I grew up in the Yukon and Northern BC so moving to Fernie was an easy transition due to the mountains, lakes and rivers.  I love the mountains!  The trail systems that have been built here and the fishing have served my husband, our son and myself very well.  To find something to do in Fernie is easy when you love the outdoors.

Living in a community this size everyone knows everyone so news can travel fast.  I have seen it many times when someone needs help, the community steps up and truly takes care of their own.  I was diagnosed with breast cancer in October 2015.  With surgery, chemo and radiation in 2016, the people of Fernie/Hosmer lifted me and my family up and carried us through some pretty rough times with words of encouragement, love, a meal train and help.  We managed to beat cancer!


What makes me proud to be a Canadian?

I am proud to be a Canadian because we have a beautiful country rich in diversity, culture, beautiful landscapes, fresh air and clean water. Canadians are people who give the world peace, love and a sense of calm. From coast to coast to coast our people would do anything for anyone inside of Canada and out. We are a friendly bunch who enjoy good music, laughter, hockey, beer and Timmies coffee! Ha ha ha!


What is your Fernie story?

My Fernie Story started 25 years ago when my husband Shawn and I came here for a visit and we never left. With plenty of work and a beautiful town who would want to leave?? Shawn made my transition easy as he himself grew up in Fernie. With Shawn knowing most folks in town it was a great jumping off point for me to meet more people. I then worked at a couple high profile jobs in town and was able to meet most of our population through those venues. When our son was 5 I became a stay at home mom and my husband went to work in Northern Alberta. I asked him a few times should we move closer to his job? Shawn’s answer was always, no. He was good here. As was I. When I was diagnosed with Cancer our community stepped up and helped us get through the year. Pulling into town after two months away in Kelowna for radiation i looked at Shawn and said “Its a good thing we never left this valley. I couldn’t have done this year without my family, friends and community’s support. Shawn and our son agreed.

One of our previous Mayors said it best, “Fernie, It’s the people!”.  I stay steadfast to that comment to this day.