Belloy – The Belgian Opera Singer

Belloy Road, near Wanham, was named for a station on the Edmonton, Dunvegan and British Columbia Railway line.  The station was named for a Belgian opera singer, Octavie Belloy.

It was Maurice Polet, the brother-in-law of a Belgian painter, who named Belloy Station as well as Manir Station – just a little glamour from afar  in the northern Canadian wilderness.Octavie Belloy, also known as Tavie Belge, (1894 – 1965) made her debut as a soprano at the Royal Flemish Opera in 1911.  In 1918 she starred in the operetta “Fiddlers Three,” a career move which not only allowed her to escape WWI by taking her to Broadway but also resulted in romance.  On tour after the Broadway run, Tavie was on the New York subway when she bumped into a childhood friend.  Marechal E.P. Hendrich was all grown up and the Secretary of the Belgian War Mission. They married before Tavie’s 87 show tour was over.The couple returned to Belgium.  By 1926 Tavie was forced to retire from singing due to illness, but no doubt she continued to make appearances as a famous person.Octavia Belloy may never have known she was famous way up here in the Peace River Country.

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