THE ADVOCATE 739
VOL. 79 PART 5 SEPTEMBER 2021
The Honourable Paul Ronald Lawrence
Paul was born in North Vancouver on October 27,
1944. His parents were Roy and Harriet Lawrence.
Paul enjoyed the outdoors from an early age and
throughout his life pursued adventure on the water
and in the bush.
After graduating from UBC in 1969, Paul put his
brilliant mind and law degree to work at the Vancouver
law firms of Maczko & Poyner; Paradis, Lawrence & Sanderson; and
Doust & Smith.
Following his appointment to the bench in 1984, Paul realized a dream
when he moved, with his new bride Mary Ann, to preside over the Provincial
Court in Terrace and live in their beloved log home beside the Skeena
River in Usk. They embraced this new life outside the city together and
formed a strong and unique bond that sustained them in their many joint
and individual activities.
Thus a new chapter began in the life of this remarkable man, as the move
opened up new opportunities and allowed new friendships and passions to
emerge. Paul fished the rivers of the Skeena Valley and the waters of Prince
Rupert and Kitimat, hunted the vast wilderness north of Terrace, mentored
young outdoor enthusiasts, hiked the mountain trails around Terrace
including Sleeping Beauty, explored the Spatsizi Plateau on horseback and
went “south” to fly fish, hunt and holiday in the Cariboo (Chilcote)—all the
while becoming a highly respected judge and community member.
Judge Lawrence’s circuit court adventures stretched from Burns Lake to
the Queen Charlotte Islands and from Terrace to Dease Lake. On the northern
circuit, he became well known and respected in communities such as
Dease Lake and Telegraph Creek, with many tall tales to tell of eventful
excursions along the Stewart Cassiar Highway with his court circuit party.
On the bench, he was known for being thorough and fair, and his decisions
were well reasoned and at times witty.
His lifelong passion for fishing and hunting was legendary among the
members of the Kingfishers Rod & Gun Club and fisher and hunter friends
throughout the province. Paul’s skill was extraordinary. It is said he could
“read water” and tie the best flies imaginable, while simultaneously telling
stories and enjoying a wee dram, or two.
One of his friends, E.L. Iverson, recounts their relationship: