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Brown, Rex Pendril
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Rex Pendril “Pen” Brown was born in Vancouver in 1923 to Emma Bentall Brown and Philip Pigott Brown, both from Essex. Brown attended UBC at age 16. At age 19, Brown was called to serve the army in WWII, but received conscientious objector status. Brown objected the war on philosophical grounds, having read pacifist writings by Bernard Shaw and others. His mother, a member of the Society of Friends and the Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom, supported his conscientious objection.
Brown served his time in alternative service work camps at Kootenay National Park and Blubber Bay. He also served 30 days in Oakalla prison for refusing to complete work during his service. After the work camps, Brown worked as a bank teller in Vancouver. He was released from service in 1946. He married Elizabeth Dorothy Kovalcik in 1957, and the couple had two children, Rex and Marian. Brown was the lighthouse keeper at Pine Island, off the coast of British Columbia, from 1957 until a major storm damaged the station in 1967. The family then moved to Victoria, where Brown worked for the Coast Guard until retiring in 1989. He passed away on April 11 2018.
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Authority record created by Kristina McGuirk, September 2017.
Authority record updated by Claire Williams, June 2018.
Graham, D. (1986). Lights of the Inside Passage: A history of British Columbia's lighthouses and their keepers. Madeira Park, BC: Harbour Publishing.
Rex Pendril Brown Obituary. Published in The Times Colonist from Apr. 13 to Apr. 14, 2018.