She survived ordeals in a primitive world few have inhabited — all for the love of her life. In Journey Through Fire and Ice: Shattered Dreams Above the Arctic Circle, readers can witness young Deanne Burch’s profound transformation from naïve city girl to confident, strong woman. Burch would later become an internationally renowned photographer, and in Journey Through Fire and Ice, she shares her remarkable story of following her husband to an Inuit village on a remote island, where they experienced both exhilarating triumph and unspeakable tragedy.
Journey Through Fire and Ice: Shattered Dreams Above the Arctic Circle
by Deanne Burch
Genre: Biographies & Memoirs
At the age of twenty-three, Deanne Burch accompanied her husband, Ernest “Tiger” Burch to the Inuit village of Kivalina, Alaska, a barrier island 23 miles above the Arctic Circle. Tiger was conducting a participant study of the natives, whereas Deanne was a city girl – ethnocentric, naïve, and completely unprepared for the journey she was about to embark on. In Kivalina, she lived on the edge of two worlds – the one she left behind and the one where she reluctantly participated in all aspects of the women’s lives. Skinning seals, cleaning and drying fish, cutting beluga and caribou to store became her way of life. Plumbing, running water and electricity were not available. Loneliness was a constant companion, although she tried to be accepted by the Inuit women who were suspicious of all white women. Gradually Deanne adapted to living in a culture she knew nothing about. The midnight sun was followed by relentless darkness and brutal weather. With this came a journey into the unknown. First was a fateful camping trip where they nearly lost their lives, followed six days later by a fire in their house, an event that left Tiger badly burned. During the three months Tiger spent in the hospital, his only wish was to return to Kivalina and finish what he had started. Despite horrific burns on his face and hands and seared lungs from which he never recuperated, Tiger and Deanne returned to the village to complete the study. Instead of believing in fairy tales and happy endings, Deanne became a woman of strength ready to face the next challenge. Over fifty years later she remembers the young girl who left on an unknown journey. A journey that will live in her heart forever.
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