Pioneer Cowgirl Passes Away
Myrtle Dorko, a long time resident of Columbia Valley, was born in Bristol, Connecticut on May 7, 1906 and passed peacefully to her rest in Chilliwack, B.C. on July 23, 2005. In her formative years, Myrtle was raised in Brooks, Alberta by her foster father O.T. Goff. Throughout the 1920’s she won many awards at the Calgary Stampede. In the early 1930’s along with her husband Alva Stewart, they moved to a homestead in Driftpile, Alberta where their 7 children were born and raised. They retired to Silver Creek, B.C. in the mid 1950’s where Alva later passed away. Following his death Myrtle worked as a nurse and through this she met her second husband, Ed Dorko. Together with Ed’s brother Mike they ran the Cherry Creek Ranch in Columbia Valley until retirement in the early 1970’s.
While a resident in Columbia Valley she served the community as a nurse to both humans and animals, was an electioneer for many years and was instrumental in planning the building of the Columbia Valley Community Hall. Most of the wood used to build the hall was donated from the Dorko farm. Their home was a gathering and focal point for the entire community. Myrtle started and participated in the carpet bowling at the hall until last year when her health was failing. Myrtle was predeceased by her husband Alva Stewart (1956), second husband Ed Dorko (1994), son Orin Timothy Stewart (2002) and brother-in-law Mike Dorko (1971), sister Alice Lodge and brother Llewellyn Prothero.
She will be loved and remember by her children; Margaret Stewart, Jon, MaryLee Stewart, Paula Weir, Alva, Glen and daughter-in-law Mary Stewart, 27 grandchildren, 55 great grandchildren and 5 great great grandchildren as well as many friends. Myrtle will be sadly missed and was loved by all.
Funeral services will be held at the Chapel of Henderson’s Funeral Home on Friday, July 29, 2005 at 1:00 pm with Pastor Jim Wyman officiating. Internment to follow at Carmen Cemetery. A tea will be served at the Columbia Valley Community Hall. Donations may be made to the Canadian Cancer Society.