I am saddened to share the news that Dr. Hyatt passed away peacefully with his family and closest friend by his side following a battle with a very aggressive cancer. Kim made significant contributions to DFO in significant and lasting ways, including his work on the Wild Salmon Policy, advice relating to salmon restoration and recovery under the Columbia River Treaty and climate change impacts to salmon populations. His passion for discovery and excitement for innovation resulted in a number of long-standing relationships with First Nations and external organizations—relationships that Kim built on trust, commitment, and honest communication. His scientific prowess, leadership, and good humor will be greatly missed by all who knew and worked with him.
His life and work(see video) was also honoured in the BC Legislature on June 2, by the Hon. Sheila Malcolmson, the BC MLA for Nanaimo. Here are her words: We mark B.C. Wild Salmon Day with sad news. Last week Dr. Kim Hyatt, a leading wild salmon scientist, passed away peacefully at home in Nanaimo, family at his side. Although on medical leave from the federal Department of Fisheries and Oceans, he remained committed and connected to the many research projects under his leadership, including a final web call on sockeye and climate change just two weeks before his death. Over the last four decades, Kim’s legacy work at the Pacific Biological Station included the federal wild salmon policy, the Nisga’a interim measures program and the upcoming work on the Columbia River treaty. His passion for discovery and innovation resulted in long-standing relationships with First Nations which Kim built on trust, commitment and honest communication. Kim’s last wishes were that his ashes and those of his wife Annis be committed to Pipers Lagoon in Nanaimo and to some of the watersheds he devoted decades to study — Great Central Lake, and Sproat, Kennedy and Osoyoos Lakes — a final, fitting symbol of his dedication to sustainable wild salmon populations.
Dr. Hyatt was CARS president between 2004 and 2008, serving as past president until 2010. It was his wish that people donate to the Larkin Award in memory of him. Cheques can be made out to CARS and sent to Erin Rechisky (1680 Estevan Rd., Nanaimo BC V9S 3Y6, Canada, RE: Larkin Award).
– Caleb, CARS President