Communities on Vancouver Island continue to mourn the death of long-time Comox Valley resident and activist Ruth Masters.

The World War Two veteran passed away on Tuesday, November 7th.

Comox Valley Chamber of Commerce CEO Dianne Hawkins says Ruth’s legacy will live forever. “Ruth brought a lot of strength and determination. She had a great vision for the Valley. Her gifting to the Valley with the park was a huge gesture of generosity and one that all of us will benefit from for years to come.”

In 2004, Masters gifted 18 acres of her property beside the Puntledge River to the Regional District, helping create the Masters Greenway and Wildlife Corridor.

Masters was also a two-time recipient of the Chamber’s Citizen of the Year award, in 1984 and 2004.

Comox Mayor Paul Ives says Ruth was a long-time champion of protecting the environment.

“When we were looking at building a roller hockey rink, there were some suggestions that it could be built across from the Rec Centre but it was an area called ‘The Little Woods’ and there was a lot of concern about cutting down those trees. Ruth was among the many people there to express concerns around that. Eventually we found another spot for it, which worked out much better.”

Courtenay Mayor Larry Jangula says Masters also made a strong impact on the treatment of veterans.

“If you look back to the beginning of her impacts, I would say, was during World War Two. She was a very distinguished World War Two veteran and very active with veteran’s affairs issues for years.”

Ruth Masters was 97 years old.