Joan Lightfoot and fellow Zone 2 swimmer Gord Giesbrecht are pictured with medals they won at the 2018 55+ BC Games.

Sports run in the family of Comox swimmer

Riding the wave of her parents’ exploits at previous events, Joan Lightfoot is accumulating a serious medal collection from the 55+ B.C. Games.

Like her mother Ruth, Lightfoot competes in all strokes in swimming, though she specializes in the breaststroke. She and other swimmers from the Vancouver Island North zone will gather for their first practice next month to start preparing for the September event in Kelowna.

“This year I’m hoping to improve my time at the IM (individual medley),” said Lightfoot, 73, a Comox resident who started competing at the Games in 2011. She is part of the executive for Zone 2.

“My mother was in the first Seniors Games (Vernon, 1988), swimming, and she won a lot of medals and (set) records. She was really a good swimmer. And my dad (Bert Davies) was a cyclist. So they both went to the Seniors Games in different sports.

“It’s a family thing,” she added. “I do family history. I was looking at pictures of my mom and dad, and thinking how proud I was of them, and it was about the time that I retired. So I decided that was my goal, was to have my kids as proud of me as I was of them.”

Lightfoot will be part of a three-generation family team at the Shoreline Orthodontics Tri K Triathlon, May 26 in Courtenay. After swimming 30 lengths, she will haul herself out of the Sports Centre pool and hoof it to the Vanier track, where she will hand off to her 52-year-old son, Dennis, who will bike the course and tag her 18-year-old grandson, Douglas, who will run the last leg of the event.

The Tri K will be a good warmup for the 55+ Games, where Lightfoot expects some “stiff competition” in the 70- to 74-year age bracket.

“I’m at the top of my age group. (But) I’m there for a good time. I’m no Brian Staton,” she said, referring to the Black Creek resident who swam with the Simon Fraser University team in the 1960s, and who continues to compete for Zone 2 at the 55+ Games.

Numbers were down at the 2018 Games in Kimberley and Cranbrook, but about 4,000 people are expected this year in Kelowna.

“It’s like a family reunion every year,” Lightfoot said. “I stand on the podium with these other two girls, usually, in the breaststroke. We’re exactly the same age. One’s from the Okanagan, the other’s from the Kootenays, and we’ve become good friends.”

For information about the 55+ B.C. Games, visit 55plusbcgames.org

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Courtenay pharmacy donates some sanitizer despite high demand

Pure Integrative Pharmacy provides some to Glacier Village, Comox Valley Transition Society

Vancouver Island man sick with COVID-19 calls it a ‘horrible disease’

Tim Green says he has ‘extreme coughing fits every hour’ to clear his lungs

Successful removal of invasive plants in Comox park

The Friends of Mack Laing Nature Park (FMLNP) organized an ‘Invasive Pull… Continue reading

Craigdarroch residents find ways to help each other online and off

Neighbourhood of about 200 households lies between Royston and Union Bay

Comox Valley mayors say residents adhering to public health directives

The Comox Valley’s three mayors all say that while Public Safety Minister… Continue reading

‘We will get through this’: B.C. sees new COVID-19 death, but 57% have recovered

A total of 1,066 people have tested positive for the novel coronavirus

Comox Valley grocers going extra mile during coronavirus

We have had numerous requests to post a fluid article directing consumers… Continue reading

Couple celebrates 61st anniversary through Vancouver Island seniors’ home window

Frank and Rena Phillips marked occasion at Nanaimo Seniors Village this week while social distancing

A look at some of the B.C. inventors creating life-saving tools in fight against COVID-19

Groups across B.C. are working together to create what they hope will help people affected by the pandemic

Comox Valley Schools considers next stage in face of coronavirus

Though face-to-face instruction has been suspended during the COVID-19 pandemic, school districts… Continue reading

Association launches French-language games, online tools for families learning at home

Games, culture and vocabulary included in new virtual resources

‘There can be no ambiguity’: Travellers brought home to B.C. must self-isolate

Health Minister Adrian Dix said the mandatory isolation must be abided by

Belle from ‘Beauty and the Beast’ entertains home-bound kids in Cowichan Bay

Alora Killam, 16, played the part in musical two years ago

55+ BC Games cancelled amid COVID-19 concerns

Greater Victoria set to host 2021 event

Most Read