Many people may remember the start of Tumbler Ridge, the initial clearing of the forest to the last house built. When talking with Dianna Gies, I could picture the start of a community. She moved here with her parents, and seen the town go through its ups and downs, and smiled as she said that the town feels like it starting to move forward again. Kevin and Dianna originally met in Dawson Creek, and have been married for 22 years. They have two kids, Daniel, 14 and Kelsey, 16. Kevin?s brother Chris moved here a couple of years ago.
Originally, Tumbler Ridge Sand and Gravel was called Kaydee Contracting and was solely owned by Kevin. This was the business to call for all your road construction needs. In December of 2002, Kevin finally got the go ahead to begin using one gravel pit, and then the second in the fall of 2005. His brother Chris came aboard and ?Tumbler Ridge Sand & Gravel? was born. Now the duo stays busy, and watches as their business prospers. They feel that sticking it out through the tough times was worth it, now that they can once again see the town beginning to grow.
When I spoke with Dianna she told me about a time when the town was full of younger bright-eyed families. ?Back when the mines were open, the community was even more active? she mentioned. She would love to see softball tournaments come back into town, and more services offered. ?Watching the new construction of both residential and commercial lots will be a tremendous delight, since there has been very little built since the mid eighties.?
Not only has Kevin seen the town go through its hard times, he has also been fighting his own battle. Kevin was diagnosed with a genetic disease that altered both his two lungs. He had to hold onto an oxygen bottle to breath. After staying strong for years, Kevin had the opportunity to receive a double lung transplant. In March of 2005, he walked in to the surgery room. When it came time to walk out, Kevin could breath on his own again.
When asked ?What makes you smile?? Dianna replied that life in general does and watching people make the best out of what they have. Kevin and Dianna have traveled to Mexico and Jamaica, and she recommended Jamaica as the better of the two. She told me, ?Don?t get me wrong they were both great, Jamaica was just more laid back.? The future for these two pioneers is to be part of the community, and keep living life to the fullest.