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Families

Arie and Tiny Bor
October 11, 1953 – Veendam

In 1952, Dutch citizens Arie and Christina (Tiny) Bor were living in Indonesia. Arie, a mining engineer, was employed in the oil business by Shell Oil Company. They had two young daughters, Karin, aged 6 and Ada, aged 4 years. At this time, Indonesians were rebelling against colonialism and seeking independence. Life in Indonesia was in turmoil. Arie and Tiny wanted to escape the political tensions to live and work in a safer environment. They returned to Holland and chose to emigrate to Canada. Arie states that opportunities in the oil business were abundant in Canada as the Alberta oil fields were just being developed. The Dutch also were grateful to the Canadians for their role in the liberation of Holland at the end of the Second World War.

A former colleague of Arie’s had been living and working in Calgary, Alberta for a year. He agreed to sponsor Arie. In June 1953, Arie sailed for Montreal leaving Tiny and the two girls in Holland. Within ten days of arriving in Calgary, Arie had three job offers. He was functionally fluent in English as he had studied English at school for six years and practiced it while doing business in Singapore and Hong Kong. The job that Arie accepted was based in Edmonton, Alberta. Once he was settled there and had rented a house, he sent for his wife and daughters. Tiny and the girls sailed from Rotterdam aboard the last trans-Atlantic sailing of the S.S. Veendam. During the crossing, Tiny was often seasick. In the evenings, Tiny and the girls attended some of the shipboard activities such as horse races. They arrived at Pier 21 in Halifax on October 11, 1953. A fellow passenger, Ms. van Gelder, amused and supervised Karin and Ada while Tiny dealt with Immigration officials and luggage. Following the immigration process, they boarded a train for a 3-4 day journey to Edmonton.

Arie and Tiny Bor have lived in a variety of towns and cities in Canada including Edmonton, Calgary, Wetaskiwin, and Redwater, Alberta, as well as Estevan and Weyburn, Saskatchewan. The frequent moves were related to Arie’s employment in the oil industry. After leaving the oil business, Arie and Tiny managed a motel and trailer park in Fernie, B.C. Later, Arie ran a machine shop in Oliver, B.C. Following retirement, the Bors moved to Vernon where they lived for 25 years. They currently reside in Calgary. Since immigrating to Canada, the Bors made only one trip back to their native Holland in 1960.