Mary Majka was born in Poland but during the Second World War, she was arrested and sent to a labour camp in Austria. Following the war, she went to medical school in Innsbruck where she met her husband Mieczyslaw (Mike) Majka.
The couple immigrated to Canada in 1951 because they became Displaced Persons following the war and they did not want to go back to Poland. They originally settled in Ontario and later permanently settled in Mary’s Point, an acclaimed wetland and bird sanctuary at the head of the Bay of Fundy in Albert County, south of Moncton. Named after Marie Bidoque, a Mik’maq woman who lived there in the 1700s, it is often assumed that Mary’s Point is named after renowned environmentalist Mary Majka.
Mike worked as a doctor and Mary devoted her life to conservation and environmentalism, even hosting a children’s television program about nature.
Mary Majka was one of Canada’s great pioneering environmentalists. She was best known as a television host, a conservationist, and driving force behind the internationally acclaimed “Mary’s Point Western Hemispheric Shorebird Reserve on the Bay of Fundy.”
Along with her many credentials, Mary was licensed from 1980 to 2000 for the rehabilitation of injured or starving wildlife.
Among her many awards – the University of New Brunswick – D.Sc.; Milton F. Gregg Conservation Award; the Order of New Brunswick 2005; the Order of Canada 2007; and the Lieutenant-Governor’s Award for Excellence in Land Conservation in 2012.
Mary Maijka died in a Moncton Hospital after suffering a stroke in 2014.
Canadian Museum of Immigration at Pier 21
Author Deborah Carr
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