David and Janette Whittle Family

Uncredited pg 802 More Big Hill Country 2009

David Arnold Whittle was born December 5, 1930 in Calgary, Alberta, first son of Frank and Kay Whittle. A brother Ray in 1932 and a sister Joan followed him in 1944. Dave attended elementary school in the old brick school on Main Street where Holy Spirit School is today. The school was next door to the Whittle home with lots of playground to use as well as an outdoor skating rink. Sport was always a large part of Dave’s life whether it was hockey, fastball, curling, or golf. 

Curling began in 1946 with early coaches William Beynon, Bob Hogarth, and Sid Reed. He played fastball, from 1947-1956 in the Bow Valley League. He played hockey for the Cochrane Senior Team, Mount Royal College, and the University of Alberta/Calgary Education Team. 

Dave finished grade 12 at Mount Royal College in 1948. He attended the University of Alberta/Calgary from 1949 to 1952 to earn a degree in Industrial Arts Education. 

Dave worked for his father’s business on weekends and during the summer months. After Sunday baseball games the players often went to Mr. Hart’s Drugstore for refreshments. This is where he met his future wife who was scooping ice cream and making great milkshakes. 

Whittle Implements 1960

Janette Elma Fenton, daughter of Elmer and Isobel Fenton from the Bottrel district, was born in November 1934. She had four brother’s Buster, Jim, John, and Allan, and two sisters Donna and Marlene. Janette attended a one-room school, Mount Hope, riding horseback for two and a half miles. Some winters, during the 1940s, the snowdrifts were so high that riding through was impossible. Roads were never plowed then so you waited for a thaw. 

Coming from a large family meant lots of time playing outdoors. An appreciation for nature developed at this time that has remained. 

Janette worked at Mr. Hart’s Drug Store, from 1951-1952. The Drug Store was on Cochrane’s main street where the highway went through to Banff. One Sunday, 2200 ice cream cones were sold at ten cents a scoop. Fellow clerks while there were Loretta Lee, Dorothy Perkins and Trixie Cassidy, who later worked for Cliff Irwin Drugs in Calgary.

Andison Block Plaque

Janette and Dave were married in October 1954 at Scarboro United Church in Calgary. They lived the first year in the upstairs suite at Bob Armstead’s (Dolly and Allister Moore) home. In 1955 they bought a two bedroom (Shell Oil) home from Dick Wetherell, which was only two years old. Its value then was $8800.00 and a twenty-year mortgage. A monthly payment of $65.00 was often a struggle. 

Dave’s centennial project for 1967 was to build a new living room in this home in order to create another bedroom. Most of this he did himself in his spare time and evenings. He also built a garage, tent trailer, and household furniture. They lived at this location, 112 1st Street East for forty-three years before moving to Cochrane Heights in 1998. 

Dave worked from 1953-1956 for Shell Oil at Jumping Pound Gas Plant in maintenance and operations. 

In 1956 when their father Frank passed away, Dave and brother Ray bought the family business from their mother and continued selling International farm machinery, trucks, fertilizer, insurance, coal, and delivered fuel to the rural community for the next twenty-two years. Coal was ordered from Drumheller and it came by forty-ton boxcar. It had to be unloaded in two days otherwise demurrage was charged. 

Once a year in the 1960’s Whittle Implements held an Appreciation Day. Town and rural customers were invited to a free pancake meal served by the dealer and his staff, Bob Grievson, Bob Thomas, Allan Hall, Carl Westerson. B.A Oil had changed to Gulf Oil when the business moved to larger premises at 365 Railway Street. The property was bought from Lambert Brothers. Whittle’s old property formed part of Cochrane Valley Shopping Centre. The machinery business closed in 1978 and all the rest was sold then. 

In 1979 Dave bought an upholstery business from Ken McNaughton  and worked out of the Railway Street building until retirement in 1998. 

Dave and Janette have two children Debra Ann, born October 1955 and Kevin David born December 1958. They attended school in Cochrane and presently live here in Cochrane. 

Debbie worked eleven years as a receptionist at the Cochrane Health Clinic. She presently works at the Foothills Medical Centre in Calgary. She married Mike Admussen in 1977 and they separated in 1988. They have two children Steven Lee and Angela May. Steven was born 1983 and graduated from University of Calgary in 2007 with his Bachelor of Commerce. Angela was born 1986 and graduated from Bow Valley High School in 2006. She is employed at Revolution Sport Supply in Calgary. 

Kevin graduated from Cochrane High School in 1977. He worked for Esso from 1981 to 2004. He is presently working for Wenstrom Equipment in Langdon, Alberta. He has been a member of Rocky Mountain Big Wheels and has altered many vehicles mechanically as a hobby. 

Dave and Janette celebrated their 50th Wedding Anniversary, on October 4, 2004. In their retirement, they like to spend time in the country, at a two-room cabin that they remodeled in the 1980s. They hike, bird watch, and do photography. 

Janette has always enjoyed arts and crafts and painting. She has been a Cochrane Art Club member since 1970 and recently joined the Foothills Art Club as well. She continues to enjoy working in watercolor and pastel and has been honored with the Heritage Award several times. 

Dave is a long-time member of the Cochrane Golf Club and plays several times a week through the season. He remains passionate about the game. Several times he has been Senior Golf Champion. 

In 2000, the Whittles and their descendants celebrated being in the area 100 years.

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