Sunday, December 23, 2012

In print: The life of rancher Wes Alm

Author and rancher Wes Alm
T. Lucas photos

Toni Lucas

Wes Alm and Annette Rush came to Kootenai Brown Pioneer Village on December 21 to promote Alm's latest book 'A Thousand Wishes Granted'.   The book came out in August of 2012, and is an autobiography of his life growing up, living and ranching in Alberta.  "Wes has had a lot of good things happen in his life, and he figures it had to come to at least 999," said Rush.   One exception to his wishes being granted was the loss of his wife Dix due to complications with Multiple Sclerosis.    Near the end of the book Alm writes that  one of his regrets was, "Not having Dix at my side to enjoy this book, our life's journey, and the fruition of all we strived for,"  Alm expressed appreciation for Annette Rush who has been with him the last 12 years.

Annette Rush and Wes Alm
This is Alm's second self published work.  The first was 'The Kings of Sharples Creek' about the King brothers.

Alm wrote this book in longhand, and Rush transcribed the work into the computer.  The couple chose to forgo having it edited,to save on time.  "I wanted this book published while I was still alive," said Alm, who is 87 and a half years old.  "That half is very important," he said with a chuckle.

Born in Cabri Saskatchewan, Alm's family moved to Olds Alberta when Wes was two years old.  He helped with the family farm until he was 24 in Olds, but it was not where his heart was.  It was too flat, and he loved the idea of being a cowboy rancher, rather than a farmer.  "I liked horses,"  said Alm.

When he was 24, things changed for Alm.  His father bought a ranch west of Claresholm.  According to Alm, the rest of the siblings didn't care for the new ranch, except for him.  From then on Alm ranched the Bar 15, where he raised his four children with his wife Dix.  He also made furniture and restored buggies and wagons as a few of his many hobbies.

Alm decided to raise Simmental cattle, going repeatedly to Switzerland to chose cattle, and he sat on the Simmental Board for many years.  He also loved and raised heavy horses.  He would buy standard bred horses from the race tracks once their racing career was over and once he had about eight he would take them down to to the States and sell them to the Amish.

"I have to be busy.  I can't stay still," said Alm.

Currently the book can be purchased at Kootenia Brown Pioneer Village and Dyer Str8s in Pincher Creek as well as at various locations in Claresholm and Nanton.


  1. Anonymous28/12/12

    I am one of Mr. Alm's New Mexico friends. The book is a terrific read, and I certainly congratulate Wes and Annette on the job well done. As I finished reading the book yesterday, I had the feeling that we had been sitting across from each other having a good talk. It is his words, his thoughts, and his personality.

  2. Anonymous29/12/16

    We found Wes' book such enjoyable reading. When first meeting him, one would never know all that he has accomplished. A person has to get to know him, ask questions, and only then will he gradually reveal all the interesting and outstanding aspects of his life. I completely agree with the above posting: reading his book is like sitting and talking with him. A great job, Wes and Annette.


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