Marathon runners, the 4 Amigos, from left: Derek Brenchley, Derek Tripp, Derek Vinge and Derek Richmond.

2019 Comox Valley Year In Review: October

NDP takes both local seats; Everson has unusual coin minted

  • Dec. 30, 2019 1:30 p.m.

Denman cleanup

Association of Denman Island Marine Stewards collected between eight and nine tonnes of junk from the beach – a 30-per-cent increase over the amount from 2018 – during their latest cleanup. The main cleanup day attracted about 65 people, but work started in the days leading up to the event. In all, about 150 people took part in the effort on Denman.

Fatal fire

One person was confirmed dead following a residential fire. Tenants of the Hillview Apartments in Merville were evacuated when the building caught fire, as Courtenay and Oyster River firefighters attended the scene. Within the hour, Oyster River firefighters were called to a second fire in the area, while around the same time another fire broke out on Denman Island. No one was injured in these other fires.

New Seniors Village administration

The Island Health board of directors appointed a temporary administrator to manage and oversee the day-to-day operations of the Comox Valley Seniors Village. The problem had been non-compliance with the Community Care and Assisted Living Act, as the facility had experienced many infractions. This marked just the third time since 2007 that Island Health appointed an administrator at a long-term care facility.

Baking Show contestant

Comox’s Andrea Nauta stay on The Great Canadian Baking Show ended on the third episode of the season. She’d admitted breads were her weak spot, and breads happened to be the subject of the episode. She’d practised bread sculptures before leaving for the shoot in Ontario but did not bring along her own moulds, so she had to fashion one from scratch while there.

NDP wins both ridings

The NDP, with leader Jagmeet Singh at the helm, hung onto a number of ridings on the Island – including the North Island–Powell River riding, which they won back from the Tories in the 2015 election, and the Courtenay-Alberni riding. Rachel Blaney and Gord Johns, respectively, won back their seats in the House of Commons.

Comox, RCMP end investigation

The Town of Comox, as well as the RCMP, concluded their respective investigations into allegations of staff misconduct, with no further action planned. This was a response to allegations about the behaviour of unnamed members of the Town’s Public Works Department toward female school students.

Mysterious package arrives

Tina Van Akker’s 13-year-old daughter retrieved a mysterious package from their community mailbox in Comox from Quebec, as indicated by the return address on the package. Inside was a baggie with a white powdered substance along with a second baggie containing an orange flower charm. They sent it to police for testing.

Union Bay governance study

The Comox Valley Regional District agreed to take part in a process to look at governance in the community of Union Bay. The board that governs the Union Bay Improvement District has faced discord in recent years. The study will now look at whether to maintain the status quo or have the CVRD take over the services UBID administers.


Berwick award

Berwick Comox Valley won the 2019 ICAA NuStep Beacon Award, which recognizes and honours the Top 25 ‘Best in Wellness’ senior living communities in North America. Berwick Comox Valley was among those recognized as best-in-class for successfully fostering a wellness-centred environment to benefit all who live and work in their community.


Artist’s Mint coin

The first feather-shaped coin the Royal Canadian Mint ever minted had a special connection to the area, thanks to a Comox Valley artist. Kwakwaka’wakw/K’omoks artist Andy Everson previously designed coins for the mint, but never one in such a unique shape. The one-ounce pure silver coin had a mintage of 3,000 through the Royal Canadian Mint for $149, and had sold out by press time.


Locals off to ringette worlds

Two Comox Valley women would be participating in the World Ringette Championships in late 2019 in Burnaby. Arran Arthur was playing for the team from the Czech Republic, while Haley Hill served as an assistant coach for the Americans. Teams from Canada, Finland and Sweden were also competing in the junior and senior divisions. Canada is was the defending junior champion and Finland the senior champion.

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Tom Grant and Charlene Davis celebrate after cutting the ribbon on the first unit of the WeCanShelter project between Dawn to Dawn and Comox Rotary. Photo by Mike Chouinard

Green leader Elizabeth May arrives with her dog Xiomara at the Comox campaign office for North Island-Powell River candidate Mark de Bruijn. Photo by Mike Chouinard

Wip Climbing held a grand opening event in Courtenay. Scott Stanfield

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