Throughout her life, Margaret (Dickson) Caldwell was active in the community of Summerland.
Caldwell, who died on May 2 at the age of 95, was born in Summerland and said she learned from her parents the importance of sharing with others.
At 19, she joined the Royal Canadian Air Force Women’s Division and served for 42 months during the Second World War.
She trained at Manning Depot in Toronto and was sent to #1 Y Depot, Halifax, where she and others awaited a convoy to escort a small ship to Newfoundland. A year later, she was sent to Western Air Command in Vancouver and Prince Rupert. Her longest posting was at Boundary Bay, until V.E. Day and V.J. Day.
She was discharged in January, 1946.
When she returned to Summerland after the war, she married Sandy Caldwell.
In 1957, she started working at Summerland Secondary School, and in 1969, the graduating class at the school dedicated the school yearbook to her.
In 1970, when she became a widow, she moved to Williams Lake with her partner Archie Bickner.
There, she worked at the Indian Friendship Centre on the Drug and Alcohol Program. At that time, the Alkali Lake Indian Band achieved a sobriety rate of close to 100 per cent.
When she returned to Summerland, Caldwell continued her work as a community volunteer.
She has worked with the Summerland Food Bank and at Lakeside Presbyterian Church, as well as with the Heritage Committee, the Summerland Art Club and the Summerland Legion.
She was part of the original building committee for the Legion Village.
She also worked with Civil Liberties in Penticton and was a delegate to the Canadian Human Rights Commission.
But throughout her life, she thought of herself as working quietly, not in prominent roles.
“I’m not a leader,” she said in 2006, when she received Summerland’s Good Citizen of the Year Award. “I’m a team player, a facilitator. I don’t like to be in the limelight.”
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