Dr. Anne Weigerinck received her Doctorâs degree in medicine from, the University of Manitoba in 1921, however, she remained inactive in her profession, for a number of years following her graduation. Prior to World War II she and her husband and three children lived on a farm near St Paul, Alberta.
After the declaration of war in 1939 many doctors joined the armed forces and rural hospitals found it difficult to replace them. Such as the case in Elk Point when Dr. A.G.. Ross enlisted. Without his services Dr. F.G. Miller would have been left alone to care for the sick in a large growing area. It was imperative to and a replacement for Dr: A.G. Ross as soon as possible. Previous to tbis, Dr. Weigerinck had decided to brush up on her profession and return to the medical field. It wasn't long after that Dr. F.G. Miller enticed her to come to Elk Point to practice medicine at his clinic as well as assume duties in the Elk Point Municipal Hospital. This was late in 1939 and the following year the Weigerinck family moved to Elk Point. They established their residence in a home previously owned by Rev. Lorentzen. It was located on the lot where Irene Miller makes her home.
Dr. Weigerinck was often referred to as "Our Lady Doctor" by many of our village residents. In no time after her arrival she proved herself to be a very dedicated doctor, one who had no trouble fitting into our community. With only two doctors to serve a large area, she soon found herself spending many long hours at both the hospital as well as at Dr. Miller's Clinic.
Somehow she still found time to devote many hours to community affairs within our village. She was active in the Red Cross Society and was instrumental in forming Elk Point's first library which was located in a. small building built on the lot where the Elk Point Insurance and Realty now stands. She was also, active in our local scouting movement. Dr. Weigerinck was well thought of by Dr. F.G. Miller as well as by the nurses and staff of the Municipal Hospital. She soon gained the respect of her many patients and friends within the community.
Dr. Weigerinck was very sports minded. She took an active part in the formation of Elk Point's first curling rink which was located where our town library stands. Being an ardent curler, she skipped her own ladies rink for many years both in league play and in local and out of town bonspiels. For many years she stayed with much the same rink, which included Doris Andrishak, Barbara Millholland and Mary Soldan. Dr. Weigerinck also enjoyed watching hockey games in our outdoor skating rink. Often she was seen standing along the boards cheering the Elk Point team on to victory. She was a hardy individual who didn't let cold weather keep her away from the games.
Dr. Weigerinck also enjoyed outdoor life. She was an exceptionally good swimmer who spent much of her spare time swimming in the frigid waters of Cold Lake where she owned a cabin. She was always one of the first swimmers to take an early dip in this lake, sometimes a month, or six weeks before anyone else had any thoughts about swimming.
When Dr. A.G. Ross returned to Elk Point in 1947 after spending a number of years in the armed forces as well as practising medicine in the Vegreville hospital, it brought some relief to both Dr. F.G. Miller and Dr. Weigerinck who were often overâworked because of the shortage of doctors.
During the latter part of the 1940's the Weigerinck family moved to the spaceous residence formerly used by the Dr. A.G. Ross family. It was located along highway 41. Later Dr. Weigerinck built a new home next to the Catholic Church. This home is now owned by Bill and Barbara Milholland.
Dr. Weigerinck's husband passed away. in. 1944 and during the following years her family of three started leaving our âdistrict. Paula. the oldest became a teacher, Jack joined the Royal Canadian Mounted Police and Doris enrolled in College. Presentlythey areâall living in the Courtenay district of Vancouver Island. Dr. Anne Weigerinck passed away in 1968, after actively serving our community for 29 years. She was greatly admired and respected by all for her many years of faithful service as well as for her untiring community work. I am sure the many older residents of Elk Point and district will always remember Dr. Anne Weigerinck â our lady doctor.