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Lethbridge Herald, The (Newspaper) - March 23, 1974, Lethbridge, Alberta People of the South Saturday, March 23, 1974 THE LETHtRIDQE HERALD S By Chris Stewart Bill Lewko's (rail) road to success THE VOICE OF ONE Dr. Frank S. Morlev "It was work or starve when I landed in Lethbridge back in April, according to 83-year-old Bill Lewko. "There was no welfare, no relief and no hand- outs and we knew it. And what's more, we knew we couldn't afford to go back home. That's why we worked like slaves to make sure we kept our jobs. To be out of work was unthinkable." "We pounded so long and so hard with our picks and shovels laying new railway beds that we couldn't relax when we hit the mattresses at night our arms seemed to be bent into a hammering position. Our backs were bent from carrying ties and our hands hardened from shoveling." "But this was our new land Canada the place we had longed for in the Ukraine. It was the land of opportunity where hard work paid off and we weren't afraid of work, that's one thing we were sure of. Here a man could build his dreams and gather a nest-egg, if he was lucky. That was all that mattered." These are the recollections of this proud Canadian whose father mortgaged his Galicia farm for the price of his fare to Canada on the promise that his young, adventurous son would repay it within two months. How, he didn't know, but he was certain he would. And he did out of his meagre 25 per day wages as a section man with the CPR out of Lethbridge. He wouldn't let his father down he just couldn't. He pared his housekeeping costs down to a mere monthly, not a cent more allowing himself a half loaf of bread per day, one egg between two men (scrambled with milk, flour and commeal and spread hot on the bread) and bowls of homemade soup made from salt pork stock He baked his own bread in an improvised outdoor oven heated with sawed-up railway ties, set his dough before leaving for work in the morning; punched it down at noon and baked it for an hour in his portable oven, and mmm, was it good! for 11 relatives, each of whom found steady work upon arrival and promptly repaid his benefactor. With the November lay-off Lewko went off to the Michel mine, but after two days of shack-bunking with fellow miners he decided to quit. "I could he said, "that everything I earned during the day was going to go for booze at night and that was no way to get ahead, so I headed back to Lethbridge, got work with the extra gang laying tracks and lived in a bunk house." He was laid off again after Christmas when high drifts interferred with track-laying but two days later was hired as a section hand at Coutts and later transferred to Milk River. By this time he was making the handsome wage of per day. the demands. He still gets phone calls, "Please, Bill, come and unplug my sink." But Bill Lewko finds he just has to offer a polite "no." "After all, I'm 83 now and it's about time I he laughs. He and his wife (who emigrated to Myrnam with her parents at age six) have never returned to their homeland. "Neither of us have had any desire interjected Mrs. Lewko. "Canada is our home and all our friends are here." But their attractive home at 819 9th Avenue South is filled with touches of the Ukraine. Beautiful, variegated cross- stitched cushions, worked by Mrs. Lewko's traditional to the Ukraine, dot the living room; Mrs. Lewko's hand crocheted bedspreads adorn the beds and her crochet work graces the buffet and tables the painstaking work of a dedicated craftsman. Potted African violets edge the window sills and an assortment of choice, bushy houseplants adorn the tables. Centering the mantle is Bill Lewko's miniature furniture, moulded from tin cans and upholstered in blue velvet. You feel at ease immediately in this Ukrainian Canadian home, highlighted by precious crafts. The Lewkos have six grandchildren and two great grandchildren Their sons Pete and Tom have followed in their father's footsteps both work for the CPR. What has Bill seen during his 63 years in Lethbridge7 "I've seen the great prairies empty and barren come alive with people and produce. I've seen Lethbridge become the trading centre for this whole southern region, and it's only begun to develop. You just wait and see. The future of this city is tremendous and rests with those with the vision to plan it properly Poverty spawns a dreadful brood Bill was raised in the village of Wolczkowce, in the Ukraine At age 16 he had gone to Romania to dredge a river for penny wages and had to live in lice-infested quar- ters with 12 other men. He wanted something better but with the family farm barely providing a livelihood for the younger family members. Bill knew he must head for the new world preferably Canada, if he was to realize his dreams. When he sailed from Trieste. Italy, he knew his goal was within reach. After 19 days at sea he docked at New York, headed north to Montreal, spent to register at the unemployment office and was promised a road construction job at Sudbury. But reports of fatalities from rock slides moved him to forfeit his registration, and spend on a train ticket to. Lethbridge and his last dollar for seven loaves of bread to eat en route. He was reduced to mere crumbs by the time he reached Taber. When a friendly chap boarding the train offered him an apple the first fruit since he had left Italy he almost went wild with delight When he reached Lethbridge he had only twenty-five cents in his pocket but possessed all the confidence in the world. His pal Joe Dolenuik, 21. who had written encouraging him to come, assuring him there would be work here, was there to meet him. He hurried Bill off to buy a pair of overalls, and just as Joe had promised. Bill started work the very next morning as a station hand, out of Coaldale. building new roadbeds for the CPR at cents an hour high wages in those days. Bill started to save with his first pay His goal was to pay back his trusting father the WO he had spent on Bill's fare. He managed to save 160 in two months and borrowed the remaining With his obligation met he saved feverishly to purchase Ukraine farmland with a view to someday returning to his homeland a dream that never materialized due to the outbreak of the First World War. In two brief years he had sent home to his father for iand investment But instead of returning to the Ukraine Bill sent his brother Nick's fare to come out to join him and subsequently fares Mr. Lewko realized he had to improve his spoken and written English if he was ever to be appointed section foreman. He enrolled in English classes in North Lethbridge, at monthly, taught by Sophia Musket. As the class dwindled in size the fees increased By the conclusion of the course only Bill and another immigrant remained. But Bill was glad he stuck it out. In the fall of 1915, four years after landing practically penniless he was appointed foreman of a section gang. "They were rebuilding the tracks from the overhead bridge to the stock yards and were putting the subway in on 13th he recalls. "They were hauling dirt from the other side of the coulee and needed lots of men We had Russians, Czechs, Ukrainians and Swedes working with us, but we all got along fine and soon adjusted to each other's ways." He served as section foreman at Chin, between the years 1915-1922 By 1918 he was toying with the idea of going into the cattle business and went north to Myrnam, 30 miles north of Vermilion to talk over the proposal with Ukrainian friends. they told him, "you've got a good, steady job. You'd have to hire men to care for your cattle, plus buying feed and paying for corrals. There's a lot more to it than just buying land. Leave it alone." And Bill, who had gone north wearing light summer apparel in hot July weather, only to be chilled in a killing frost, was glad to head south again as well as to accept his friend's advice, but not before he had met Mary Myshymuk (also from Wolczkowce, in the Ukraine) whom he proposed to by mail the following winter. They were married the next summer and set up housekeeping in the section house at Chin. He was named section foreman at Dunmore, six miles east of Medicine Hat in 1922. the year he purchased his first second-hand Chevrolet. But the Lewkos and their sons, Pete and Thomas, disliked the piles of coal heaped against their section house completely blocking their view of the prairies. They wanted to move and in 1926 Bill Lewko was named section foreman in Coaldale. He held this position until his identical appointment in Lethbridge in 1938. He retired in 1956 at age 65. He recalls working the snow plow in sub-zero weather 36 hours at a stretch when he napped briefly by stretching out on a bench each time the train made a quick depot stop. He recalls drifts higher than the eight-foot arm tacked onto the top of telephone poles and whole herds of sheep covered by drifts for days, with Bill assisting Ken and Ron Bullock in digging them out. BUI Lewko Photo by Walter Kerber Book reviews One of the absurdities of society "Kind and Usual Punishment: The Prison Business" by Jessica Mitford (Alfred A. Knopf, 18.95, 349 pages, distributed by Random House of Canada Reaching pension age didn't spell retirement for this hard- working Ukrainian. He did upholstering for Enerson Motors and made book-racks for school busses without any formal training in either field. "I just watched how others did it and did the same." be explained. He has mastered several trades this way, including phmbing, painting and decorating just by doing it after watching how it's done. He started his own Fix-it business. He never advertised, of coarse, because he never needed to. One just told the other until he found he couldn't possibly keep up with "The objectives of prison, as traditionally set forth by penologists, are threefold: protection of the public by locking up the lawbreaker, deterrence, and rehabilitation. (A fourth one, punishment, has virtually been dropped from the lexicon of the modern prison men, although this is the only objective that prison actually This could be taken as a kind of summary of Jessica Mitford's latest look at one of the absurdities of society. Some cruelty still exists in American prisons but Jessica Mitford is mostly concerned to expose the more subtle forms of torture vented on prisoners: the indeterminate sentence, which "grants Corrections the power to play God with the lives of parole, which is "infected from the outset with the arbitrariness and unpredictability that is characteristic of penal institutions and other treatment, which is "a humiliating game, the rules of which the convict must learn hi order to placate his keepers and manipulate the parole board." It mostly adds up to punishment as ineffectual as the harsher forms such as paddling, lashing and defacement. Although many correctional personnel would likely concede that much of the criticism levied by Jessica Mitford is valid, they are apt to be antagonized by the book as a whole. It will only increase the frustration widely experienced among corrections officers. Actually frustration is not the peculiar preserve of prison people it is widely diffused throughout society. The answer to what to do about crime and those who commit it eludes us. Jessica Mitford suggests that we can start by Books in brief "The Crime of the Century Other Misdemeanors" by John Godey (Longman Canada Limited, 191 pages, John Godey has written an interesting account of what it was like to grow up in the 1920s in the upper reaches of Manhatten. The trouble is that almost everything is related to discipline. As the author puts it. his boyhood was measured, "in terms of spankings received, averted, or cunningly deflected to an innocent brother." After a time the litany of punishments gets monotonous. Most of the escapades described are common to normal, healthy children. Snowball fights, running away from home, playing cards, getting dirty, arguments and minor injuries, all of these were punishable offences in the Godey household. However, the author survived and holds no grudge against his parents for the barrage of lickings received. A very humorous book by a gifted storyteller. TERRY MORRIS disabusing our minds of the notion that prison protects us. Only a miniscule fraction of lawbreakers are apprehended and put in prison the President's Commission on Causes and Prevention of Violence in the United States estimated that only 1% per cent of perpetrators are imprisoned. Then we can rid ourselves of the illusion that the presence of prison acts as a deterrent to crime. An experiment in Massachusetts with closed prisons indicates that imprisonment and the threat of imprisonment have no measurable effect on the rate of crime. Finally, it seems we should give up the idea that rehabilitation can take place in prisons. In prison administration circles, according to the author, there is wide acceptance of the view that between 75 per cent and 90 per cent of the prison population could be freed immediately without danger to the community or increase in the rate of crime. A start at emptying the prisons could be made by redefining a whole range of offences as noncnminaJ. prostitution, gambling, vagrancy, adult- consenting sexual acts, all drug use Only in the second chapter, where Jessica Mitford writes about her experience of spending a day and a night in a Washington. D.C. prison, does the book have the liveliness expected of the author Most of the book reads like the research project it is That might keep away the general reader which is unfortunate because he is the very one who most needs to read this sort of thing. DOUG WALKER The results of poverty are mostly sad. Poor people don't join clubs, live apart from their neighbors, attend concerts less than the well to do, and seldom go to the theatre or things like that. The poor suffer from illness, crime, loneliness, problem families, and schizophrenia. It is more difficult for them both to seek and to obtain justice in the courts. Malnutrition has a malign effect on the brain, as well as the eyes, the bones, and bodily organs. Poverty takes away the drive and brings on a mental and physical lassitude and an unfitness for achievement in education or labor. Some resear- chers claim that the poor are responsible for as much as 80 per cent of the crime. Certainly the poor get worse treatment. They lack the money for bail for one thing. The Canadian Civil Liberties Association cites the case of a charge of possession of narcotics being withdrawn on August 2 against a man who had been arrested for this offence on March 23, so that he had spent 131 days in jail before the prosecution decided it lacked sufficient evidence to go to trial! The Canadian Medical Association states that in Canada and the United States 20 per cent of the population are poor.' "There are 40 million poor in the U.S. and 3Vz million in Canada and this 20 per cent of the population suffers something like 75 to 80 per cent of the major illnesses. "Nevertheless it is hard for anyone who came through the Depression of the thirties to think that the present generation knows anything about poverty. It was pitiful to see thousands going without medical treatment because they could not afford it A farmer brought in a load of wheat and exchanged it for a pair of spectacles foi his daughter. The government paid a grant to a certain school, but it was used to pay the janitor and the teacher went almost entirely unpaid for two years. Teachers and nurses got a pittance anyway A storekeeper in southern Saskatchewar was slowly going broke giving credit, "but what can you do when you know there are hungry kids at Tens of thousands existed on a meal a day or less. 1 visited homes in Montreal East where water came down the walls in the fall, froze in the winter, and ice lined the walls until spring, the floors were mud, children's feet were bare and a few rags covered their nakedness. Depression hit the prairies worst. The effects of poverty were not all bad. A McGilr professor, appointed head of a large government agency during the war, said, "I have two sons and I'm an Easterner, but I tell you those boys from the west have something. They are smarter and more resourceful than our boys." Another head of a large government department said, "I have instructed our people to credit the boys from the west with a year extra of training and experience. They're that much better." History teaches that poor countries breed strong people. There is a vast difference between being poor and living in poverty. It is a fascinating fact that families were closer and happier, while the affluent society has bred all manner of indecencies and drugs. Reading the Report of the Senate's Committee, "Poverty in one wonders whether there is no danger of goirig to an extreme in government aid and breeding a race of leaners and moral weaklings. The Ontario Federation of Citizens weeps because some families are too poor to buy Easter eggs, some children have to wear hand-me-downs, and they don't have vacations together or trips. The Saskatchewan Government, according to a news report, is going to subsidize families earning as much as to annually, No one wants to see this country fail in every possible effort to rescue "the submerged prevent them growing up with feelings of hopelessness, anger, hostility, and fear, but let us realize that the causes are multiple. Much is due to feeble some to alcoholism, some to promiscuity, and some to mental illness. Merely to give more money is a poor answer to the problem of poverty. The problem is not merely income- deficiency, but is a total life problem. The University of Lethbridge APERTURE Sanlokh Singh Ananl Velikovsky and Hindu Mythology Or. Santokh Singh Anant joined the U of L faculty in 1966. He is a psychology professor, and his areas of specialization are personality, social and clinical psychology. He received his early university education at Punjab University in India and received his PhD from the University of Michigan in 1963. Dr. Anant has had two books published as well as 65 papers in professional journals. A basic hypothesis advanced in Worlds in Collision (Velikovsky, 1950) is that the Venus "collided" with Earth around 1500 B.C. producing catastrophic upheavals on this planet. A postulated consequence of the collision is that the rotational speed of Earth on its axis slowed down resulting in an abnormally long day (in the Eastern hemisphere) and longer night (in the Western Velikovsky cites several mythologies from different parts of the world which give reference to a very long day or night. There is a story in Hindu mythology which tends to confirm Velikovsky's idea of the universality of this myth. As the times of various events in ancient Indian history cannot be definitely ascertained, the dates when this event occurred could have been between the coming of the Aryans to India (around 1500 B.C.) and the birth of the Buddha (about 560 However, the probability of its occurrence close to 1500 B.C. is strong. The story in Hindu mythology, which contains a reference to the "sun standing still" for a long period of time (resulting in an abnormally long day) is the "Story of Savitri and Satyavan" and is taken from the mythological epic. Mahabharata (see Pratap Chandra Roy. The Mahabharata, Calcutta. India: Dotta This story is very popular in India and is told often as an illustration of the powers of a truthful and faithful wife. The following version is the popular version of the story, as this writer has heard it several times. Savitri was the only child of Ashwapati. the powerful ruler of Madra in Northwestern India. She grew into a beautiful maiden, endowed with high intelligence, wit and purity. When she was of a marriageable age. her father was searching for a suitable match for her. One summer morning, Savitri went to the hermitage where some youths were playing. One of them, Satyavan, was tall, graceful and handsome. Savitri looked at his noble sunbrowned face and suddenly slackened her pace. It was love at first sight Satyavan also belonged to a distinguished royal family. Savitri told her mother of her feelings. The matter was conveyed to the king by the mother. A few days later, Narad Mori, son of Brahma, visited the king. Jost then Savitri entered the cowl. Narad Muri was struck by her charm and asked the king about the girl. When Narad heard that she was promised to Satyavan, he strongly opposed the marriage and predicted that Satyavan was destined to die at sunset on a certain day. Savitri was asked to change her decision hot she refused, stating that the heart once given could not be taken back If her marriage with Satyavan was not approved, she was prepared to remain unmarried all her life. Ultimately the king gave his approval for the marriage and it took place among great rejoicing. Then the married couple proceeded, to a forest where hermits lived. Savitri liked her new life in a humble cottage and discharged her' household duties with simplicity and grace. Ever mindful of the prediction of Narad Muri, Savitri prayed to God more fervently for a long life for Satyavan. When the final day came, Savitri was prepared to see who would be the victor destiny or love. The day was almost over. Nothing untoward happened. In the late afternoon, Satyavan was going out to gather frujt in the forest Savitri followed her husband with his permission. Suddenly, Satyavan developed a frightful headache and laid down, with his head on Savitri's lap. He felt the approach of death and bade farewell to his beloved. Savitri saw a very strange and dark-stained face. The strange figure told her that he was Yama, the angel of Death. He tied up Satyavan's soul and moved towards his abode, the "other world." Savitri followed him meekly. Yama advised her to go back and attend to her duties. Savitri replied "I must go wherever my husband goes! O Gracious God; let me follow you." Savitri talked using many philosophical arguments which pleased- Yama Yama was prepared to grant her any boon other than the life of Satyavan. "My father-in-law has lost his sight and kingdom: Kindly grant him his sight and place him on the throne again." asked Savitri. "It shall be said Yama and advised her to go back. Savitri followed again, speaking philosophically to Yama. At the same time, she prayed to the God of Sun (Surya Devta) not to go down, as at sunset her husband would have died finally. As Yama was pleased again so he granted Savitri another boon. Savitri asked. "My father has no male-- child, kindly grant him one." "It shall be done, he shall be blest with many sons." said Yama. At this Savitri expressed her gratitude and said "I have won each of my heart's wishes through your kindness. Please permit me to keep your company. I feel reluctant to. part with you. for the path seems shorter when you are near. Company of a god is always good." Yama said, "You are endowed with every grace and virtue, your lovely face." reflects your soul clearly. May yon have peace of mind! I would like to give you one more favor before I go. Ask something for yourself and iive happily on the earth." She: boldly said. "Grant me brave and wise sons." Yama replied. "So it shall without realizing what he had done. Now Savitri- prayed to him, "0 Lord, let my Satyavan live again so that wise and brave children can be born to us Yama had no choice now but to release the soul of Satyavan. after which be vanished hi a flame. It is said that as long as' Savitri followed Yama, the sun stood still and did not set. Savitri took the soul of Satyavan and ran back swiftly where Satvavan's body lay. Then she placed the soul upon his heart At once Satyavan woke up with a sudden start. Satyavan gazed with a surprised look as one awakening from sleep ;