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Oliver continues to remember a beloved educator

Hockey players at an Oliver fundraiser take a much needed break between periods. Money was raised during the game for a memorial bench for Oliver Elementary School Principal Barton Tumlinson, who passed away suddenly in January.
March 23, 2015 - 2:27 PM

PENTICTON - It’s been two months to the day since Oliver lost one of the town’s - and School District 53’s - most respected educators, but residents aren’t about to forget the man anytime soon.

The community and school district were shocked to hear of the sudden death of David Barton Tumlinson on January 23, 2015.

Tumlinson served school district 53 as Vice-Principal at Similkameen Elementary Secondary School in Keremeos from 2009 until August 1, 2013, when he took on the principal’s position at Oliver Elementary.

A press release issued by District 53 following Tumlinson's death described him as a “kind, visible and gentle leader who was loved and respected by students, parents and staff."

On Friday, March 20, Oliver resident Jeff Crowley assembled a group of hockey players at Oliver’s community arena to stage a fundraiser for a bench in memory of Tumlinson.

“It came together quickly, within two weeks,” said Crowley, adding organization of the event relied on social media and local radio and involved “a lot of logistics.”

Crowley said fund raising towards a memorial bench for Tumlinson had begun with bake sales and bottle drives. He hoped to bring a number of fundraising ideas together under one roof in the hope of raising a larger amount of money than any one single event. Proceeds from a duck throw and concession sales helped boost the total raised during the game to $2,000.

“When you organize something like this, you hope it goes well, and I’m happy with the way it went. I have tons of people I’d like to thank, including the community in general. A lot of people got together to make this work,” Crowley said.

The Town of Oliver donated the ice time from the event. Many of those who attended were students, who decorated the arena with posters of one of Tumlinson’s favourite expressions. Posters lined the ice at the rink corners with student’s art and the phrase “Be the change you want to see in the world.”

To contact the reporter for this story, email Steve Arstad at or call 250-488-3065. To contact the editor, email or call 250-718-2724.

News from © InfoTel News Ltd, 2015
InfoTel News Ltd

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