Obituary - Allan G. Provost 1936 - 2010


Allan G. Provost 1936-2010
Sadly and unexpectedly, news came through this week that Allan (Al) Provost died suddenly in the early hours of Monday morning (June 21) in hospital in Denver, Colorado. He died of complications associated with leukemia, a condition that was diagnosed only two weeks earlier.
A larger than life personality, Provost was known throughout the national and international mining and civil tunneling industries.

Al celebrates 40 years in business with Harrison Western

Al was President of Harrison Western, the mining and civil construction company founded in Denver, Colorado in 1968. Under his leadership, the company was instrumental in introducing earth pressure balance technology to the United States, using a Japanese Hitachi Zosen TBM for the Anacostia River twin tunnel crossing for the Washington DC WMATA metro system in the mid-1980s. He expanded the company's reach internationally with purchase of the Lilley tunnelling construction company of the UK in the 1990s, and secured several international construction constructs including a subcontract to drive the Delivery Tunnel South section of the Phase 1A Lesotho Highlands Water Project scheme in Sourthern Africa in the late 1990s using a refurbished Robbins main beam gripper TBM.
Al was in his early 70s and was remembered by many at the NAT (North American Tunneling) conference in Portland, Oregon this week. As a Canadian national, he was a friend and associate of Richard Lovat from the very early days of Richard's founding of his own TBM manufacturing company, and was a mentor of Rick Lovat from a baby. Al will be known and remembered by many in all corners of the world.
A memorial service is arranged for Friday, June 25 at 11am, at the Bunker Auditorium in the Cecil H. and Ida Green Graduate and Professional Center on the Campus of the Colorado School of Mines in Golden, Colorado. In lieu of flowers, it is asked that contributions be made to the Colorado School of Mines Foundation. Visit the website for further details
Provost is remembered by his extended family including his wife Sue Watters Provost; children, Donald, David, Douglas, Christopher, Jennifer, and Kristine; brother, Murray and sister Linda; stepchildren Darrell, Rob, Ken, and Don; and 17 grandchildren.
TunnelTalk is working with senior managers and staff of Harrison Western on a more detailed obituary for a coming Alert. If anyone would like to contribute with personal messages, anecdotes or photos, please submit via e-mail to or via our Feedback page.