Our cook, Scotty McQueen, baked bread at night when it was cooler. Alongside
the range, high up, was a small window for ventilation. McQueen was bent
down at the oven when some dirt fell in from the open window. Thinking
it was Hal Zinn teasing him, without looking up he swung his left arm in
a backhand swipe and connected with something furry - followed by a growl.
Scotty let out a scream which brought Hal in from next door to find a badly
shaken and almost incoherent cook. The smell of fresh baked bread must
have attracted the bear.
was a 55 gal. drum of Hymelt grease just inside the log garage. This drum
had a large lid held down by screws. Hal Zinn had been filling grease guns
and intended to refill them the next day so he left the lid off. The next
day there were claw marks across the grease where a paw full had been scooped
out. If that bear ate the grease he would have been one well lubricated
summer of 1949 saw a lot of construction. Cpl. Andy Preece of NWT&Y
Engineers was the construction foreman for a new station building, married
quarters, engine room, three warehouses and an ice house. At the same time,
WO II Howie Crowell and Signalman Ken Stewart came in to build the 100
ft LF antenna masts. In preparation for the construction we had dozed out
an 800 ft. circle for the 600 ft LF antenna site. Shortly after their arrival
Crowell, Stewart and Preece went down to the cleared area to do an initial
survey for the mast bases and anchors. There was a crashing sound back
in the trees. Ken Stewart picked up a chunk of gravel and threw it toward
the sounds. The sounds stopped and a bear walked out to the edge of the
clearing, looked toward them and growled. The sounds had been the bear
smashing stumps to find grubs. Andy Preece, who must have been about 50
years old at the time, was off at a dead run and didn't stop until he was
back at the station. When the other two got back, Andy was still white.
They never got him back to the mast site again.