J. Allen Matheis started school in 1954 at theCornwall School in Fairy Hill, Sask. He was a German–speaking student with no supports, so life was tough. He started school in Southey, Sask. in 1959 and progressed to become an “A” student. He enrolled at the University of Alberta but ran out of money in his first year. He was fortunate to get a job with Imperial Oil Refinery in Regina. They paid for his Engineering courses as long as he successfully passed the exams. He completed several courses, among them Stationary Engineering, Refrigeration Engineering and Petrochemical Engineering. When the refinery closed in 1975, he didn’t take the transfers offered, but chose to work at a railroad rip yard, chemically cleaning railroad cars. Two years later, he took a job with Regina QuAppelle Health Region as a comptroller, and has been there ever since.
A deafblind son Michael was born in 1971. When Michael was three, Allan and the family worked with a group of parents to create an education program for special needs people. They have been involved with a number of similar groups over the years, and Allan chaired many of them. Micheal was given a chance to go to a Deafblind program in Saskatoon SK and that was how the Matheis family became involve with CDBA. He calls it “Michael‘s story“.