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

Just Posted

Stage 3 water restrictions in the Comox Valley beginning September 3

Restrictions in effect until Sept. 27 for BC Hydro scheduled maintenance

Fanny Bay Challenge asks visitors to support businesses during highway closure

Community rallies as part of Highway 19A closes for six weeks due to culvert project

Mountainaire Avian Rescue Society monthly update

More than 170 birds and mammals brought to Merville centre in July

Courtenay man acquitted of manslaughter

Court accepts accused Jonathan Billy’s argument of self-defence for 2017 incident

New police force in Surrey must avoid VPD, RCMP errors made in Pickton case: Oppal

Boots are scheduled to be on the ground by spring 2021

Business owner blasts council about cantilever option

At the Aug. 19 meeting, downtown business owner Michael Gilbert chastised Mayor… Continue reading

Striking Western Forest Products workers could lose benefits in September

Union, forest company at odds over Vancouver Island benefit payments as strike enters third month

Conan turns to the Property Brothers for tips on buying Greenland

Jonathan Scott suggests removing glaciers and mountains to bring in ‘more natural light’

Forests minister visits B.C. town hit by multiple mill shutdowns

A third of Mackenzie turns out for rally, not much to cheer about

B.C. sockeye returns drop as official calls 2019 ‘extremely challenging’

Federal government says officials are seeing the same thing off Alaska and Washington state

B.C. music teacher accused of sexual misconduct involving girls

Police believe other victims could be out there after the arrest of Lamar Victor Alviar

B.C. family stranded in Croatia desperate to come home

Funds being raised to bring back mom and two children

Most Read