Ian Weir is a stage and radio playwright, screenwriter, and novelist. Born in North Carolina, he was raised in Kamloops, and worked as a newspaper reporter before completing a BA in English at the University of B.C. and an MA in Medieval Literature at King’s College, London. Weir wrote plays for Western Canada Theatre Company in Kamloops that connect with the history of the city including Flyin’ Phil and The Mclean Boys (see entry on Phil Gaglardi and Donald Mclean) and the Award-wining The Idler in 1987.
Over the past fifteen years Ian has written extensively for television with more than 100 episodes for nearly two dozen series in Canada and the U.S., including Beachcombers, ReBoot, Flashpoint and Arctic Air. Awards include two Geminis, four Leos and a Writers’ Guild of Canada Screenwriting Award.
Ian lives in Langley, B.C. with his wife Jude and their daughter Amy (from Weir’s website and Small Cities interview).
Kanao Inouye (born 1916, died 1947). At his family’s urging, Inouye left Kamloops to attend Vancouver Technical College and in 1938 traveled to Japan to further his education. However, it was not the kind of education his family would not have hoped for. Inouye was conscripted into the Imperial Japanese Army in 1942 and, due to his flawless English, became an interpreter. As a sergeant, he was posted at a Hong Kong prison that housed Canadian soldiers. It was there that Inouye gained notoriety as the Kamloops Kid; a reputation for brutality against his fellow countrymen. Prisoners feared his unusual cruelty. He randomly beat them, claiming it was in retaliation for abuse in Kamloops.
After the war, the Kamloops Kid was charged with war crimes and sentenced to death. His dying words were the unrepentant military cheer “banzai.” (Canada’s History magazine)
Dylan Armstrong (born January 15, 1981, Kamloops) is a Canadian shot putter. Armstrong is the reigning Commonwealth Games and Pan American Games champion and has also won a world championship silver medal in the shotput event. In addition, he holds the Canadian national record, the Commonwealth games record, and the Pan American Games record for shotput. His first true world success came at the 2011 World Championships in Athletics when he won the silver at the outdoor event for shotput. As one of Canada’s leading medal favorites and only medal favorite in athletics, Armstrong had set a season’s best heading into the 2012 Summer Olympics. Armstrong currently lives in Kamloops and trains there at the nearby National Throws Centre (Wikipedia).
Jean Baptiste Lolo (born 1798, date of death unknown), also known as St. Paul or Chief St. Paul, or Chief Lolo, was an employee and interpreter with the Hudson’s Bay Company in pre-Confederation British Columbia, Canada. First serving in the region at Fort Fraser in the New Caledonia fur district, he acquired the nickname there of St. Paul because of his affection for that saint. He was the right-hand man of John Tod and followed him to Fort Kamloops, where Tod was Chief Trader from 1841 to 1843, and remained in that region for the rest of his life. He acquired such great respect among the local Secwepemc people as to become regarded as a chief (Wikipedia).
James was an aerospace designer and engineer (b 23 May 1915, Kamloops; d 8 Mar 1981, Houston, TX). He was educated at the University of Toronto and the Imperial College of Science and Technology in London England. James help engineer the ill-fated R.C.A.F. Avro Arrow. He and about 2,000 other engineers worked eight years to get the CF-105 supersonic Arrow interceptor into production as the world’s fastest jet fighter. Prime Minister John Diefenbaker scrapped the entire operation in 1959. Scrapping of the Arrow threw thousands out of work and Canada lost 100 key engineers to the U.S. and Britain. James and 23 other engineers promptly went to the U.S. and went to work with N.A.S.A. where he worked on the Mercury capsule in which astronaut John Glenn orbited the earth three times in 1962. Despite being the most advanced plane in the world, James had no regrets about the Arrow
Jann has been the director of the Kamloops Art Gallery since 1987. During her tenure at the KAG Jann has been president of the Western Canada Art Association, the Canadian Art Museum Directors Organization, and the Canadian Museums Association.
She has been on the boards for the Kamloops Centennial Committee, Kamloops Chamber of Commerce, Kamloops Hospice Association, Multi-Cultural Society, the City’s Economic Development Commission, and most recently, on the committee for an arts school in Kamloops. From 1996 to 2000, she worked as a provincial appointee on the board of directors for the Royal British Columbia Museum, and from 1995 to 2001 she was appointed to the board of the British Columbia Lottery Corporation, holding positions of both chair of the Compensation Committee, and Vice President.
In 1993, Jann received the Governor General’s Canada 125 Award; in 1995 the YM/YWCA’s Woman of Distinction Award in the cultural field; and, in 2003, the Queen’s Jubilee Medal.
Jim was born and died in Kamloops (1917 – 1989), the son of one of Kamloops first Lawyers. After serving Overseas in WWII he settled in the Okanagan with his wife Hazel. In 1952 Jim moved back to Kamloops and worked as City Clerk. He assisted in the amalgamation of Kamloops, North Kamloops and Valleyview. Jim held board or Executive Positions with the School District 24, Kamloops United Church, Sea Cadets, Civil Defense, Cancer Society, Kamloops Museum, and Royal Inland Hospital. Through his tutelage, some of his children and grandchildren continue to contribute to this growing city.
In April 1989 Jim was made a Freeman of the City of Kamloops, a few months before he passed away of ALS. Jim was a quiet gentleman who never sought recognition for his work in the community and is remembered as “a real prince of a man.” (from Bobbi Clark)
Paul was born in Saskatchewan and raised in Kamloops. After graduating from the University of British Columbia, he obtained his M.A. and Ph.D. from the University of Chicago as a Woodrow Wilson National Fellow. He then spent a year in the United States Congress as the first Canadian to hold a Congressional Fellowship. Paul has taught at the University of British Columbia since 1966, specializing in local government, British Columbia government and politics, and the politics of aboriginal peoples. He has been adviser to First Nations and municipalities in Alberta, the Yukon, and British Columbia, to the British Columbia, Yukon, and federal governments, to the British Columbia Claims Task Force, the British Columbia Treaty Commission, the Council for Yukon First Nations, and to aboriginal land councils in Australia. Paul is author of Aboriginal Peoples and Politics: The Indian Land Question in British Columbia (UBC Press, 1990).