August 23, 1922 – August 18, 2006
On August 18 2006, Dr. Joseph Leo Pol de Montigny passed away peacefully at his home in Chilliwack. Born in Pontiex, Saskatchewan on August 23, 1922. Pol was the eldest of 7 children. Living throught the depression was fraught with difficulties and in the spring of 1938 Pol quit school during grade 9 and went to work as a carpenter with his father. War broke out in 1939 and Pol answered the call of duty and enlisted in the Royal Canadian Air Force. In 1941 he graduated as an airframe mechanic and was then posted to Mossbank Saskatchewan to inspect and repair airplanes. During this post he decided to re-muster and was accepted, trained and graduated as a Navigator Bombadeer.
After the war (1945), Pol made the decision to further his education. This meant that he needed to complete grades 9-12 which he did in just 16 months. To support himself while in school, Pol worked during the summers with or for his father doing construction in Swift Currant. Val Marie and Hays Saskatchewan and Vauxhall Alberta. Pol graduated from the University of Ottawa in 1951 with a Bachelor of Science, Magna Cum Laude, first in his class. He received the Rector’s Medal and the B’Nai’Brith Gold Medal for pre-med. He went on to medical school at the University of Ottawa and graduated in 1955, third in his class, and won the prize for Internal Medicine. On June 25, 1955, 2 days before he graduated from medical school, Pol married his sweetheart, Pierrette Joanisse from Hull, Quebec.
Pol spent 2 years each in Ottawa and Vancouver, specializing in Internal Medicine and 2 years in Fort Nelson, practicing frontier medicine. He and Pierette settled in Chilliwack with their 4 young children in 1963. As well as his general practice, Pol was a Prison Camp Doctor and held many medical staff posts including President of the medical,, Pharmacy, Radiology and Physiotherapy Committees for 6 years, President of the Chilliwack Lab for 10 years, Secretary of the Medical Staff for 1 year, and twice Chief of Staff during challenging times when they built a new hospital, drew up new by-laws and departmentalized. After 25 years of service, Pol retired from medicine in 1988. Pol greatly enjoyed his career, the many wonderful people he worked with and served, his involvement with the community and the many friendships that were developed along the way.
Pol is survived by his wife Pierette of over 51 years; sons Pierre and Charles of Chilliwack, daughter Louise and husband Raoul Wiart of Victoria, daughter Suzanne and husband John Yu of Burnaby; eight grandchildren Marc, Kyle, Jaspar, Oliver, Joseph, Jacqueline, Phillipe, and Andre; and his brothers and siters Lillian and husband Art Ring of Chilliwack, Denis of Chilliwack, George and his wife Beverly of Chilliwack, Georgette Evans of Cache Creek, and Yolande and husband John Chambers of Chilliwack. Pol was predeceased by his parents Napolean and Leopoldine and sister Claire of Chilliwack.
Prayers will be held Tuesday, August 22, 2006, 7:00P.M. at St. Mary’s Church (8909 Mary St., Chilliwack, BC). A funeral mass will be held on Wednesday, August 23, 2006, 10:00 A.M. at St. Mary’s Church, with Celebrant Father Justin Huang. Entombment to follow at Chilliwack Cemetary, 10010 Hillcrest Drive. Family and friends are invited to celebrate Pal’s life at St. Mary’s Church Hall following.
Special thanks to Drs. J. Campbell and E.A. Quinn and the nurses and home staff of the Chilliwack Palliative Care Unit who insured that his last few days were very comfortable. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Chilliwack Palliative Care Program care of Chilliwack, 45360 Hodgins Ave, Chilliwack, BC V2P 1P5 Phone: 604-795-4660. Arrangements in care of McLean’s Funeral Home.