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OBITUARY – Peter DeLancey (1944-2005)

On Tuesday, June 14, 2005, Canada's mineral exploration community lost one of its special members whose free spirit...


On Tuesday, June 14, 2005, Canada’s mineral exploration community lost one of its special members whose free spirit, enthusiasm and boundless energy so well characterized the word "prospector".

PETER DELANCEY was born in the Maritimes and graduated from the University of Manitoba in 1965 with a B.Sc. Honours followed by an MSc. in 1967. Soon thereafter he departed for Chile to work for Anaconda Copper at Chuquicamata. In 1969 he joined Texas Gulf Sulphur, a company in which he worked for 17 years. It was at Texas Gulf, which eventually became Kidd Creek Mines, that DeLancy developed his expertise and passion for volcanogenic massive sulphide (VMS) deposits. Texas Gulf had just found the Kidd Creek deposit, a deposit so rich and so large that it inspired a Canada-wide search for VMS deposits. Peter was swept up in the rush and participated in exploration throughout North America.

After Kidd Creek Mines and a brief spell at Imperial Metals, DeLancey was asked to lead Atna Resources, a dormant company founded by Bill Coulter in the 1980s, and bring it back to life. In 1995 Atna and joint venture partner Westmin discovered the Wolverine copper-lead-silver-gold deposit in the Yukon. Although he could manage a public company, do the road shows and talk to the brokers, his real love was to be in the field. In 2000 he handed over the reins at Atna to Dave Watkins and headed back to the bush. He traveled North and South America looking for the next big find.

DeLancey loved the outdoors and Vancouver was the perfect place for the exploration geologist and avid sportsman to put down roots. Always an "early to bed, early to rise" person, he liked to get up at sunrise and ride a bike, or play some tennis, or go for a swim. The door to his house in Kitsilano was always open and a long list of fellow geologists trailed through: Art Freeze, Rick Bailes, Linda Thorstad, Larry Lebel and Arne Birkeland, to name but a few.

DeLancey is survived by his wife Louise, daughters Heather and Jill and son Evan. In his passing the community has lost a great father, a good friend and a wise colleague. He will be missed.


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