Flags will fly at half mast at Port Coquitlam city hall in honour of a popular youth advocate and councilor who recently passed away.
Arlene Crowe will be missed as a passionate advocate for youth and seniors, said the city’s mayor who befriended Crowe while he was a young man volunteering on a city committee.
“She was a very special person and I will miss her very much,” said Brad West, who has offered his condolences to the family that has chosen to keep Crowe’s passing and details of any services private at this time.
Crowe served two terms on city council between 2001 and 2007, and wasn’t afraid to speak out.
Although she wasn’t the first female councillor — that honour goes to Jane Kilmer who served for 34 years beginning in 1928 — Crowe was an active councillor at a time when there were no other women on Port Coquitlam city council.
West remembers her an advocate for sports as her family was very involved in ringette.
Later he came to know her through his volunteer committee post and West said Crowe was always “generous with her time” and support, even signing his nomination papers when he first ran for council.
“She was always very encouraging to me,” said West, who noted that at the time he was 23 and had doubts about whether he qualified for public office because of his youth.
“And she said ‘never you mind about any of that, you are just as qualified as anybody else,’” West recalled.
Although she moved to Cultus Lake, Crowe continued to take an interest in Port Coquitlam affairs, and wrote a letter to the Tri-City News supporting a municipal tax exemption for the Royal Canadian Legion in 2014.
West said he kept in touch with Crowe over the years, often via email, noting her long-time affection and commitment to the city.
“Quite often she would send me an email or we’d chat on the phone and she was still very much connected to Port Coquitlam and to care very deeply about this community.”
Flags will fly at half-mast for the next few days as a gesture of respect for Crowe.