Rudi Hoenson

Rudi Hoenson was born in the Netherlands and moved to Indonesia with his parents. He was taken prisoner there during World War II, and remained a prisoner-of-war for three-and-a-half years. He survived the Nagasaki atomic bomb.

Following the war, Rudi returned to his native Holland and began to think about what he wanted to do with his life. One day, he saw the movie. Rose Marie. There is one scene in the film where a Canadian Mountie paddles a canoe through the Rockies. Rudi decided he wanted to live near those mountains, so he came to Canada with just a few dollars in his pocket. He made his way to Calgary, got in on the beginning of the oil boom, and married the love of his life, Sylvia.

After retiring, the Hoensons moved to Victoria and spent many happy years travelling, golfing, and gardening. Sadly, Sylvia passed away. Rudi then turned his efforts to philanthropy, donating significant sums to many charities including Broadmead Care, the Government House Foundation, the BC Cancer Foundation, Victoria Hospice, the BC Children’s Hospital Foundation and many others. A member of the ‘greatest generation’, Rudi was an exceptionally kind man with a terrific sense of humour.