Former Courtenay councillor dies in sleep

Mike Holland was a community-minded lawyer who ran in the 2011 federal election

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.

Holland had lived in the Comox Valley since kindergarten when his air force family moved to town, though he spent his intermediate school years in Halifax. He graduated from Vanier Secondary, studied at UBC and opened a law office in Comox in 1985. He later ventured into politics, at the local and federal level.

Holland’s wife Carol has been “deeply touched” by calls and comments she has received. Many people have stopped to chat and give her a hug.

“I didn’t realize, and he certainly didn’t realize, the connections that he had made in the community,” Carol said. “It’s really been so wonderful and heart-warming. He would have been so pleased. That’s the very sad part – that he doesn’t know the impact that he had.”

Holland served part of a term on Courtenay council in the 1990s, after which the local Liberal party asked him to run as a candidate. In the 2011 federal election, he placed a distant third in MP voting for Vancouver Island North behind Conservative incumbent John Duncan — who retained his seat — and then-NDP candidate Ronna-Rae Leonard.

Carol said her husband’s proudest achievement, likely, was helping to lead a fight to save Glacier View Lodge and its complex care beds.

“He initially volunteered his time to find a way to stop the government of the day from taking over their assets without compensation, and attempting to get rid of the volunteers,” she said. “He just simply felt it was wrong. Because he took that step, that process was stopped, and they backed off.”

“He saved Glacier View,” said Starr Winchester, who was mayor of Courtenay when Holland served on council for part of a term in the ’90s. “Health care was the top of his list. He always felt we were not getting our fair share of the dollars, and he fought hard for that.

“He was such a kind person with a heart as big as a house,” Winchester added. “He demonstrated absolute integrity in all his dealings with people.”

She notes his “wicked sense of humour” could always make her laugh.

Carol recalls her husband taking daughters Laura and Rosemary door-to-door when he campaigned for Courtenay council.

In January, the couple became grandparents when Laura and husband Ian gave birth to a boy.

Holland’s involvement in the community was extensive. Along with council, he was active with the crisis centre, Rotary, Kinsmen, Glacier View Lodge and numerous boards. He received the George Muir award for courage, a citizenship award from the Town of Comox, a volunteer-of-the-year award from Glacier View, and a Queen Elizabeth Diamond Jubilee medal.

 

Just Posted

B.C. students send books to displaced students of Hornby Island school fire

Maple Ridge elementary school teacher says students learned about acts of kindness

North Island Tour De Rock rider Benjamin Leah leads team to Port Hardy

“You don’t have issues and problems when you look at these kids and how much they’re going through.”

Denman Island awash with plastic debris

After 14 years of Community Beach Cleanups, the little Gulf Island of… Continue reading

Supports service tax helping homeless in Courtenay

Latest count indicates greater number of homeless seniors

Associate pastor made early connections in Courtenay

Central Evangelical Free Church opens at former Record office

Environment Canada confirms Ottawa area hit by two tornadoes Friday

At one point more than 200,000 hydro customers were blacked out

Whitecaps see playoff dreams fade after 2-1 loss to FC Dallas

Goal in 87th minute seals Vancouver’s fate

Trump drains oxygen from Trudeau foreign policy with PM, Freeland bound for UN

A lot has changed since the Liberals came to power in Canada in 2015

B.C. man fined $15,000, barred from trading securities for fraud

Larry Keith Davis used money from an investor to pay personal bills

Emergency crews investigate small sulphuric acid spill in Kootenays

IRM states a small volume of less than one cup and three dime-sized drips were leaked from carrier

Family, friends of B.C murder victim want killer sent back to max security facility

Group wants convicted murderer Walter Ramsay sent back to a maximum security facility

B.C. VIEWS: Looking under the hood of ICBC’s war on crashes

Is our accident rate really soaring, or is it inefficiency?

Most Read