Comox Valley Record Year In Review: APRIL

Valley man killed in Peru; St. Joseph’s shines on small screen

A Canadian man killed in Peru was identified by the Peruvian government as a Comox Valley resident. The Peruvian Interior Ministry identified the man as Sebastian Paul Woodroffe, of Cumberland.

The 41-year-old travelled to the country to study hallucinogenic medicine and was killed by a mob in a remote corner of the Amazon rainforest after people blamed him for the slaying of an elderly shaman.

READ: Comox Valley man killed in Peru

• A Comox resident is suing a member of the Comox Valley RCMP for an alleged assault, battery, false arrest and false imprisonment stemming from an incident in November 2017.

• Several tents have popped up on the grounds where the Palace Theatre once operated in downtown Courtenay. Piles of clothing, propane tanks, bicycle parts, a baby stroller and other items were strewn across the grounds, which are enclosed by a fence.

• The B.C. government confirmed that dead feral rabbits found in the Comox Valley died of rabbit hemorrhagic disease. The disease was first confirmed in Nanaimo in late February, where more than 300 feral rabbit carcasses were discovered at the Vancouver Island University campus.

• Forty-nine workers at a regional laundry in Cumberland celebrated a new relationship with Island Health. The Cumberland Regional Hospital Laundry Society dissolved as a society and joined the regional health authority.

Capt. Stefan Porteous with his NORAD-themed demonstration F-18. Photo by RCAF

• It was a homecoming for the 2018 CF-18 demonstration pilot Stefan Porteous, who hails from Comox and returned to the area to train for a few weeks in order to prepare for the air show season.

• Mike Holland, a community-minded lawyer and former politician, died in his sleep late in the night on Easter Monday, April 2. He was 64.

• North Island College Elder-in-Residence Dr. Evelyn Voyageur received the 2018 Indspire Award for outstanding career achievement, one of the highest honours within the Indigenous community.

• The Comox Valley branch of the Salvation Army continues to struggle with mess and pilfering of items dropped off after-hours at its thrift stores.

• St. Joseph’s General will soon be shining brightly on the small screen, as the Comox-based hospital building is serving as multiple locations in an upcoming eight-part miniseries set to air on CBC. Unspeakable is the story of the Canadian tainted blood scandal of the early-1980s.

ARTS

In arts, an NIC business student has been recognized as one of B.C.’s top Aboriginal business students. Jessie Gervais, a ballet performer, became a Ch’nook Scholar, the third ever NIC student to receive the honour.

Jessie Gervais recently became a Ch’nook Scholar, the third ever NIC student to receive the honour.

• Alan Burgess, a retired college instructor who has had a profound impact on hundreds of Comox Valley artists, was awarded the annual Nonny Milne Award for Outstanding Contribution to the Arts at the Comox Valley Art Gallery.

BUSINESS

In business, The Guerrilla Food Company in downtown Courtenay closed its frozen food outlet in order to focus on other business ventures, including a new pizzeria on Fifth Street.

• The King has been dethroned. The Comox Valley’s only Burger King franchise is closed permanently, according to a note posted on the fast-food restaurant’s door April 2.

• Area C residents ramped up their opposition to a proposed water bottling business in Merville. A new group has formed called the Merville Water Guardians.

SPORTS

In sports, more than 100 teams registered for Canada’s longest running and most inclusive multisport event — the Royal Le Page Comox Valley Snow to Surf Relay. Members of the Biblio Taco team rang the bell at the Comox Marina to win the race.

• Comox native Stephanie Dennis — a second-year medical student at Dalhousie University — was recognized as an Academic All Canadian by U Sports, the governing body of university sports in Canada.

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