The North Island’s only funeral home was shut down after owners failed to comply with the law

Year in review: August

Champ ponders return, North Island's only funeral home closes doors

  • Jan. 3, 2012 1:00 p.m.

Former Canadian heavyweight champ Ben Perlini’s said he hoped to step back into the ring in an attempt to win another championship.

At 46-years-old, Perlini said he felt he still had what it took to mix it up. But after a week of talking with concerned family and friends, Perlini said the gloves would stay on the peg.

• Citing a lack of opportunity for her and her children, Dawn Martynyk quit her job as one of four Port Alice councillors and moved to a southern part of the island.

• The pilot of a doomed helicopter that crashed in the interior killing all aboard had deep ties to the North Island. Randy Ken Lambert — who was most recently from Abbotsford, but  was born and raised in Port Hardy— was at the controls of a Vancouver Island Helicopters Ltd. chopper that inexplicably crashed in the Nelson Glacier area, near Meziadin Lake about 60-km northeast of Stewart.

RCMP investigators flew into the crash site by air and confirmed three men onboard perished in the crash.

• Native leaders behind two days of protest in Port McNeill — including one that blocked a ferry — warned bigger disruptions could be coming if their message does not get a government response.

It began Aug. 3 when approximately 60 demonstrators from Kwakiutl First Nations in Fort Rupert and others marched about 4-km from Hwy. 19 at the Port McNeill junction to the Western Forest Products log sort in Port McNeill.

Kwakiutl’s elected chief, Coreen Child, said she hoped the protests would draw attention to what she said is the province’s misinterpretation of the Douglas Treaty — an 1850s accord which the Kwakiutl and 13 other Vancouver Island First Nations signed that declared areas of land were surrendered “entirely and forever” in exchange for cash, clothing or blankets. The signatories and their descendants retained existing village sites and fields for their continued use, the “liberty to hunt over unoccupied lands” and the right to “carry on their fisheries.”

But Child said the Kwakiutl’s traditional territory exceeds the Douglas Treaty boundary lines.

Child said many First Nations have a form of agreement where they get a strategic plan from logging companies that state what the plans are within their traditional territories.

“When you look at the forestry and economic growth they have, we get zero recognition for it,” she said.

“Some First Nations are making $500,000 to $1 million on (logging deals).”

•  Port McNeill RCMP requested the public’s help in locating missing Sointula resident, 59-year-old So Huy Tran, who had not been heard from in approximately 10 weeks. Tran is a Salal harvester by trade and had been working in the North Vancouver Island area.

• The North Island’s only funeral home was shut down after owners failed to comply with the law, a Consumer Protection BC spokesperson told the Gazette.

Yates North Island Funeral Service in Port Hardy was not allowed to do business out of its 7170 Rupert St. facility since the beginning of the month when it’s licence was cancelled, said Tatiana Chabeaux-Smith, spokesperson for Consumer Protection BC.

• The community of Sointula and Malcolm Island guests fell hook, line and sinker for a revitalized Salmon Days, a festival that had been belly up for nearly 30 years.

 

The two-day festival included a parade, food and entertainment and dragon boats.

 

 

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