Canadian Flag 1957-65, followed by Maple Leaf flag
How the Canadian flag looked back then.

The Canadians of BY High

Brigham Young High School set in Canadian scene

As long as BY High and BYU existed together [1903 to 1968], 17- and 18-year-old students from Canada walked the hallways of BYH, taking whatever secondary classes they needed for full admission to the University. Some Canadian students even came to attend high school a year or two early so they could fulfill all BYU admission requirements without delay. It is estimated that since 1903 an average of five students each year -- perhaps as many as 350 -- came from Canada and took classes at BYH. We present the story of one such student as a tribute to all of our Canadian alumni:


My name is Bob Hague, and I was raised in the small community of Picture Butte, Alberta, Canada. I completed grade 12 there (but did not matriculate under the Alberta education system then in vogue).

My high school principal, Mr. Harold Wiltse, wisely counseled me to apply for a program at Brigham Young University where I could finish high school and also receive college credit at the same time, thus simultaneously obtaining a high school diploma and completing a freshman year at BYU.

So it was that in September 1948 I was in Provo, fully involved in that program. I recall that there were a number of other Canadian students doing the same thing, including Duane Butler, Watson Ririe, Ardeth Greene and Lois Stone.

My social interaction with the BY High students was quite limited because I lived in the old army barracks on the Upper Campus, and had most of my classes up there as well. Due to a physical disability, I found the rush between classes from Upper to Lower Campus quite challenging, so I bought a bicycle and braved the campus police by scooting up and down the path rapidly, most of the time without mishap.

The program between BYU and BY High School was a great blessing to me -- and likely many others -- because it made the difference in my decision to seek a higher level of education than I probably would have pursued otherwise.

At BYHS I enrolled in two classes, Health and United States History. At the same time I took a fairly heavy load at BYU. My college credits were withheld until I was awarded my BYHS diploma, which I received on May 26, 1949.

Brigham Young High School Diploma
Robert A. Hague, BYHS Class of 1949
Robert A. Hague, BYHS Class of 1949

Now, more than 55 years later, I do not remember my BYHS teachers. However, my life was strongly influenced by taking a class from a BYU professor, Dr. Ariel Ballif, who was the father of one of my classmates, Jae Ballif. Inspired by Dr. Ballif, I made a decision to accept a mission call at the end of my freshman year, and continue my education later.

I served my mission in England, and upon returning I married Delores, my high school sweetheart from Picture Butte. I then entered the University of Washington in Seattle as a sophomore -- thanks again to the joint education program in Provo. I graduated in 1954, and entered a career with Seattle First National Bank (now Bank of America) that continued for 35 years.

My wife and I have seven living children, six of whom are graduates of BYU.

Canada Dry advertisement - watercolor Canadian 1949 coin
What do the rest of us know about Canada?

At this writing, in the summer of 2005, my wife and I are living in Yakima, Washington. We enjoy relatively good health, and stay in touch with our friends and family, including 30 grandchildren. We have served two additional missions, in Singapore and Mongolia.

--Robert A. Hague, Class of 1949



O Canada graphic
Anthem

O Canada! Our home and native land!
True patriot love in all thy sons command.
With glowing hearts we see thee rise,
The True North, strong and free!

From far and wide,
O Canada, we stand on guard for thee.
God keep our land glorious and free!

O Canada, we stand on guard for thee.
O Canada, we stand on guard for thee.

Moon over Ramparts, Jasper Natl Park, Alberta. The Royal Canadian Mounted Police


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