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An Island Legacy
Dan Culver was a man who followed his dreams, whether sailing, river rafting, climbing Mt. Everest or protecting grizzly bear habitat in the Khutzemateen Valley. His love of B.C.’s wilderness was evident in all he did and he had stipulated in his will that the bulk of his estate be used to purchase "an ecologically sensitive property to be preserved for the public good".
When K2, the world’s second highest mountain, tragically claimed his life in 1993, Dan had carried to its summit the flag for the protection of the Tatshenshini River, now a World Heritage protected area in northern British Columbia.
The owners of Jedediah Island, Mary and Al Palmer, had fought to save their beautiful 290 hectare island residence from being sold to developers. On hearing about this, Dan’s family contacted the Palmers and, visiting the island the next day, immediately knew that Jedediah fully met Dan’s specifications. With $1.1 million from Dan’s estate as catalyst, a large fundraising campaign was launched. The publicity generated by CBC programs, newspaper articles and local groups, such as Friends of Jedediah and the Dan Culver Follow Your Dream Foundation, prompted continent-wide donations. The Nature Trust of British Columbia provided a central collection and receipting facility. This widespread public response crystallized the Palmers’ negotiations for Provincial Government support and financing, thus turning Jedediah Island in a Class A Provincial Park.
Dan’s passion for protecting the outdoors and empowering young people to follow their dreams was a large part of his life. Along with the legacy of this precious island in Georgia Strait that is forever protected for the people of British Columbia, The Dan Culver Follow Your Dream Foundation now runs youth leadership camps each summer on Jedediah Island. Through the preservation of this special place and its use for not only the general public, but also for youth leadership training, we are comforted that Dan’s spirit lives on.
Hugh Culver, Brother