Carl Rahn literally married the girl next door.
Carl, who came to Armstrong in 1934 from Coronation, Alta., moved in beside Margareta, who arrived from Enderby in 1930.
“We were neighbours and his sister was my best friend,” smiled Margareta, as she and Carl strolled around Hassen Arena in Armstrong Friday morning, reminiscing and meeting up with old friends as Homecoming 100 continued.
The pair married in Vernon in 1946 but lived in Armstrong.
Five kids, three houses, school and mail route driving (Carl), and nursing jobs (Margareta) later, and the Rahns continue to call Armstrong home.
The couple were looking forward to chatting with old friends who returned home for the special weekend, part of Armstrong’s 100th birthday celebrations.
“We had breakfast with some friends, it was very nice,” said Carl, who will be honoured by the city in the near future with a street named after him in the new Harding Road subdivision being developed.
For a guy who spent his career driving, Rahn said the biggest change he’s noticed in Armstrong is the disappearance of the trains.
“There used to be daily trains going through town, both CP Rail and CN Rail which had a passenger train,” recalled Rahn. “Now, there are hardly any trains.”
Joining the Rahns for Homecoming is their oldest child, Carol (aka Caroline) Guilbault, who did, indeed, come home eight years ago after being away 42 years.
“I was on Salt Spring Island and in Cranbrook where I worked as a cashier/supervisor with Zellers,” said Guilbault, whose four younger siblings Walt (Nakusp), Edward (100 Mile House), Anna (Quesnel) and Bill (Fort McMurray, Alta.) are unable to attend the weekend’s festivities.
“I transferred home eight years ago.”
A proud member of Armstrong High School’s Class of 1966, Guilbault is looking forward to catching up with her classmates, who have a mini-reunion planned during Homecoming.
“I’ve already seen friends I haven’t seen in years,” she said. “These meet-and-greets are great.”
Rollie and Marge Bremner have made the trip back to Armstrong from their home in Sherwood Park, Alta. for Homecoming.
The Bremners lived in Armstrong from 1982-1999.
“We wanted to see some old friends and we’ve already seen a few people we know,” said Rollie, who was a realtor with Downtown Realty while Marge worked for veterinarian Denton Moffat.
Bremner had owned a cattle ranch in Fort St. John before deciding to move to the Okanagan. He and Marge have five kids, the youngest graduating from Pleasant Valley Secondary.
“We had a great time in Armstrong, a very friendly community with great people,” said Bremner. “In 1999, I was ready to retire and the grandchildren and great grandchildren were all in Edmonton so we wanted to be closer to them.
“Now we see them every day.”
Homecoming 100 wraps up today with a pancake breakfast from 8 a.m. to 10:30 a.m. at the Hassen Arena.
There’s a cemetery open house tour with the Armstrong Heritage Society slated for 9:30 a.m. at the Armstrong Spallumcheen Cemetery.
People can also check out the antique clothing and fabric show, plus an art show by Colleen Dyson, at the Armstrong Spallumcheen Museum and Art Gallery from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.