BWCA Janice Matichuk - Cache Bay Ranger UPDATE Boundary Waters Quetico Forum
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      Janice Matichuk - Cache Bay Ranger UPDATE     



06/20/2020 03:35PM  
Many of you know Janice, the Cache Bay Ranger since 1985, has been diagnosed with Glioblastoma. If you are friends with her on FB you probably read the longer version.

Sometime last September, she had her pointer finger ripped off when it tangled with something on a float plane at Cache Bay. It got reattached and she has struggled with therapies to get it working again.

Then this other issue pops up - headaches, dizziness, memory issues and she gets diagnosed.

She lives in Atikokan and has to get to Thunder Bay for this new issue. Her daughter lives nearby and has really been her rock and is very organized, according to Janice. I hope she goes to all her doctoring appointments, although Janice will certainly speak her mind if necessary. Her son, Leif, lives with her for now so is also a big help.

So, should the border open this summer, you will not see Janice at the ranger station. This will be the first summer she has missed since 1985!!!

She is quite a social person so this will be difficult for her. Plus, the border being closed means her friends can't go visit her in Atikokan. : (

Please add Janice to whatever kind of prayer list you have. If you are so inclined to send her a piece of mail, perhaps recalling any interactions with her (she has a great memory for people who stop at the ranger station), I'm sure she would love it. Maybe even "friend" her on FB.

Janice Matichuk
PO Box 21
Atikokan Ontario Canada
P0T 1C0

Remember to add extra postage for the Canadians! ;)

Thanks a lot! Janice has been my good friend for more than 20 years so i am one who can't get up to see her. I'm thinking of writing to Trudeau to ask permission. Think that would work? LOL.
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06/20/2020 06:58PM  
I remember meeting her with my Spring tripping group. We were the first group entering Quetico at Cache Bay in May 2009. She was very friendly, posed for pictures with us and pointed out that we were the first paddlers thru her station on the 100th anniversity of the establishment of the park.
06/20/2020 08:24PM  
This is sad news. Thanks for the update.
06/20/2020 10:38PM  

I am so sorry to hear about Janice’s diagnosis. Some Old Timer years ago that went thru Cache Bay told me that if you want to get on the good side of Janice ... bring along some good chocolate with you when you visit her.

Well that Old Timer was spot on. I have always made it a point to bring her some chocolate when I passed thru Cache Bay. Janice would always smile from ear to ear when you laid some chocolate bars on her desk.

Mocha ... thanks for posting her address ... I will be sending her some chocolate to her home that may put a smile on her face at this most difficult time.
distinguished member(887)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
06/21/2020 10:36AM  
07/18/2020 04:55PM  
There is an interview on whip with Janice. She is trying to keep good spirits knowing the eventual end is nearing.

It’s a good interview if you have time to listen.
member (41)member
07/18/2020 06:43PM  
How do I access the interview?
07/18/2020 06:59PM  
07/18/2020 10:03PM  
Pinetree: " WTIP

Janice of Quetico "

Thank you, Pinetree
member (41)member
07/18/2020 10:09PM  
Thank you
11 years tripping
She is an amazing lady.
Sometimes we got a late start on our journey just because we had to visit a bit.
One year coming out of the bush, she surprised my wife with mint julep tea on ice for her August birthday.

Cache Bay Ranger station will never be the same without her:(
07/19/2020 09:05AM  
Thanks Pinetree for sharing the link. Jan is an amazing person.
07/26/2020 07:48AM  
Good interview. It was great to hear her voice again.
07/26/2020 08:48AM  
Got a message from my paddle partner up north, Janice has lost vision in one eye and was given 14 to 20 months for her life. So sad.
07/26/2020 12:00PM  
Breaks my heart. Can't begin to imagine what she is dealing with.

07/26/2020 04:59PM  
Ohh wow... I can’t imagine. Prayers for Janice.
07/26/2020 08:14PM  
So sorry to hear about Janice’s condition.

My neighbor just succumbed to glioblastoma about a month ago after only finding out his diagnosis 5 weeks earlier. He was as fit as a 73 year old could be ... walked 5 miles a day ... ate all the right foods ... was the best dad and grandad too.

I didn’t even know what glioblastoma was when I was told about my buds physical issues. Hard to believe another person I admired (Janice) was diagnosed with this same brain tumor growth.

Prayers out to Janice and her family.

God Bless
distinguished member(887)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
08/05/2020 12:35PM  
Janice passed away in her sleep last night surrounded by family.
08/05/2020 12:49PM  
Wow, that was quick. I didn't realize how bad that disease could be. So sorry for her and her family, as well as Quetico Park.
08/05/2020 04:56PM  
I never entered Q at Cache Bay so I never met Janice. Sure heard lots of great stories about her, though. She will leave a big hole with the Quetico staff, to be sure. My sympathies to her friends and family.
member (41)member
08/05/2020 07:00PM  
Godspeed Janice
You have always been a remarkable, tough as nails Quetico Ranger. Your knowledge of the bush and expertise kept so many of us wilderness travelers safe. I am pretty sure you were welcomed by so many who have gone before you.

Quite a miracle you survived the car in the water when you were one year old because you were wearing rubber pants and floated

We know there is a sweet little grand baby soul waiting to see you again.

Thank you
Carolyn (Moonbeam's wife)
08/06/2020 09:35AM  
Great lady, great ranger. Her presence in the park will be missed.

Strange that both she and Shan Walshe (the two people who probably spent the most time in the park) died of brain cancer.
08/06/2020 04:57PM  
Very sorry to hear this. What a nice lady.
distinguished member (227)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
08/06/2020 09:48PM  

Cache Bay Ranger Station will never be the same.
08/06/2020 11:04PM  
Another Wilderness lover who gave all for the wilderness and the people she assisted over the years. She was a legend many will not forget.

I hope her family knows how many people in the canoe world appreciated her and all she did. Thank you Janice.
08/09/2020 09:51PM  
MichiganMan: " Cache Bay Ranger Station will never be the same. "

So true! I was out on Lac LaCroix this past week when she walked on. I thought for one that she had a lot of time left. She leaves a hole in our paddling universe that is not likely to be filled any time soon. God speed Janice! Your spirit lives on out there on the water.
08/11/2020 02:26PM  
I've known Janice and her family for over 25 years and I'm so brokenhearted to learn of her passing. It's going to be very difficult the next time I paddle up to her island knowing that she won't be there to physically greet me.

But last year her son Leif worked at the Cache Bay ranger station with her. Hopefully Leif will become the full time Cache Bay ranger and continue her legacy.
08/16/2020 12:33PM  
Here is a program about Janice after her death on NPR. Interviews with her and others.....
NPR program about Janice

08/16/2020 10:46PM  
08/17/2020 06:52AM  
Jackfish: " Janice's obituary "

Thanks for the link, Jackfish.
08/17/2020 07:53AM  
Jackfish... thanks for posting the link for Janice's obituary.

An amazing lady, for sure.

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01/08/2021 02:46PM  
I don't know if folks here know.......but there is a book that was written about her.

Her island

Mine came today.

I suspect it may be a little tough to read...


01/17/2021 07:09PM  
I will read it at some point.
My oldest son and I remember her fondly, and her untimely loss is a tragedy.
01/18/2021 08:06AM  
I found it to be a tough read...

I thought it was informative but also feel it fell short. I am sure there are volumes of stories of hers out there but not in print.

01/18/2021 07:55PM  
Just downloaded it, as a kindle unlimited member it is free—part of your subscription.
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