Free cruise marks an anniversary of love

Errington couple enjoy a free ride on the famed Uchuck III

• Errington residents Terry and Kirsten Elliott originally met on a tour of Kyuquot aboard the MV Uchuck III, a 136-foot working vessel that transports passengers and cargo to remote villages on the west coast of Vancouver Island.

This summer, 15 years later, the Elliotts returned to Kyuquot on a complimentary cruise to retrace their first days together and to celebrate their tenth wedding anniversary.

Terry Elliott’s first time aboard the Uchuck III was in 1997, returning from a wilderness kayak guiding tour on the west coast of Vancouver Island.

Kirsten was on a vacation tour of her own, visiting Canada from her home in Hamburg, Germany. She was exploring the remote areas and the two struck up a conversation.

When the boat docked in Gold River, the two said goodbye and went their separate ways. Two days later, as Kirsten was coming out of a restaurant in Qualicum Beach, she heard the horn of a truck in traffic and realized that the driver was trying to get her attention. It was Terry, who happened to recognize her, and the two went out for coffee.

Over the next five years, the two saw each other once a year, either in Germany or Canada. In 2002, Kirsten immigrated to Canada, and the couple were married at Englishman River Falls.

After spending most of their married life in Errington, they decided to take their first vacation aboard the Uchuck III as a married couple.

When they called Get West Adventure Cruises to make the arrangements, they were thrilled to learn that their tour aboard the Uchuck III would be complimentary.

“It was the most wonderful weekend we could have asked for,” said Terry.



• A team from 19 Wing Comox, as well as a Coast Guard crew raced to the rescue this week when they received a call for help from Orford Bay.

They were told a woman had been hurt in a fall while she was on a 30-foot tourist sightseeing boat in the area.

The chopper was the first to arrive on scene at the remote site, located near Bute Inlet.

“We knew the patient was hurt and in pain, and we wanted to get our search and rescue technicians on the ground as soon as possible,” said Captain Luc Coates, aircraft commander. “We looked for a place to land but couldn’t find a location big enough that didn’t have obstacles and debris that could interfere with the helicopter, so we decided to hoist our SAR Techs in.”

After communicating with some people on the ground by radio, obstacles were cleared and the helicopter was able to safely land a short distance away.  Meanwhile, the SAR Techs made their way to the boat and began preparing the patient for evacuation.

“We stabilized her, put her on a spine board and stretcher and carried her to a pickup truck for transport to the waiting helicopter,” said Sergeant Kaulin Damron.

Once on board the helicopter, the patient was flown direct to hospital in Campbell River, B.C.  Her condition is unknown.



• When former Regional District of Nanaimo director Dave Bartram opted not to run in the last election, he had other plans on the go — and they were pretty big plans.

Bartram and his wife, Joyce, returned recently from a whopping 112 days at sea on board their power boat, the Murrelet.

The couple cruised from their slip at Deep Bay up the coast to Alaska, touring many ports, bays and isolated communities along the way.

In a dispatch sent to his friends at the Deep Bay Yacht Club, Bartram said they toured around Princess Royal Island and explored every anchorage and river of substance with the hope of seeing a Kermode Bear — without success.

However, they were able to console themselves with lots of crabs, both Dungeness and King, as well as prawns galore. In addition,  Joyce caught a 12.4-pound salmon and Dave pulled in a 13.5-pound Coho.



• It has been a good sailing season, but it’s just about time to wrap it up.

To this end, the Deep Bay Yacht Club held their end of summer barbecue Thursday night at their floating clubhouse.


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