Remembering Faith Jacobsen
Faith was one of those people that you saw everywhere, but particularly at the Sooke Legion. She was also very involved as secretary of the Sooke Region Historical Society, served for a time as coordinator of Meals on Wheels, was keeper of the CONTACT loan cupboard, volunteered for Sooke Community Association, cooked and washed dishes for both OAPO #88 and OAPO #109. She is the figure at right in this 1979 photo.
Faith was also a longtime Girl Guide leader and served as District Commissioner in Sooke, where she is remembered by the name “Faith’s Gate” at the entrance to the Brownie Camp on Sooke River Road. Aside from the titles of her volunteer responsibilities, she was also renowned for the energy with which she attacked storage cupboards that needed tidying, and was known as a marvel when anything needed elbow grease.
In this photo on the museum grounds, Faith had just presented a corsage and boutonniere and certificate to visitors from Ottawa, Peter and Minda Wershof, centre. It was June 1979 and the Wershofs were the 10,000th visitors to the Sooke Region Museum which had opened two years earlier. While the museum was open only in the summer months at that stage, by 1982 we were able to serve the public throughout the year.
Also in the photo are photographer Sheila Whincup, left, who covered the event for the Sooke Mirror, and behind her, Don Stewart, a teacher at Edward Milne Secondary School. Sheila, still a local resident today, has the distinction of having produced or directed three historical documentary films for the museum, “Long Before My Time,” “The Fishtraps of Sooke,” and “The All Sooke Day Story.”
Sooke’s population had grown enormously 30 years later when the museum celebrated the one millionth visitor in June of 2009. At that time, it was Sooke’s Mayor Janet Evans and Regional Director Mike Hicks, along with Ray Vowles and Liz Johnson that honoured the special visitors who had arrived from Washington State and found they had walked into the centre of a celebration.
Faith Jacobsen had grown up with her grandparents at the Waide dairy farm, which later became Broomhill Golf Course, and is now John Phillips Memorial Park. Moving to Burnaby, she later came back to Sooke with her fisherman husband Nils, and rolled up her sleeves. While illness had taken Faith long before the one millionth visitor, we know she would have been thrilled.
Sooke Region Museum