SHIPPING NEWS: Battle of the Atlantic service Sunday

Qualicum Beach Legion will mark one of the key battles of the Second World War

The Qualicum Beach Legion will be packed with ancient — and not so ancient — mariners on Sunday as veterans gather for the annual Battle of the Atlantic service.

The Battle of the Atlantic saw 25 Canadian ships take 1,243 sailors to a watery grave, along with 63 merchant navy ships and 1,629 lives. With the provisioning of fortress England at stake, winning this battle was crucial to the eventual triumph of the Allies.

The service, slated for 11 a.m., will feature John Dyson, the son of a man who served in the battle, sharing his family’s experience during those dark days.

Following the service, local dignitaries will lay wreaths at the cenotaph.

 

 

• The weekly Summer Wednesday Evening Fun Racing program left the dock at Schooner Cove Yacht Club on April 24.

Fleet captain Richard Hudson reports that six boats, ranging in size from 6.4 metres to 12 metres, started the race in light airs and smooth seas.

“The sailing conditions were excellent for this kind of event, which takes boats around an easy-to-sail course among the beautiful islands off Schooner Cove Marina,” he said. “

The summer Wednesday evening fun racing program is not aggressive racing. In fact, while it is usually difficult to tell who wins.

“That is not really the motivation for these races,” Hudson said. “The sailors in this program participate simply to be on the water for a nice evening sail with other boats — and to relax afterwards with the camaraderie of their fellow sailors.”

The participants range from cruising boats whose skippers and crew are not experienced in racing to more experienced racers. Several of the boats are cruising boats whose skippers crew on more dedicated racing boats.

“Although the wind became very light by the end of the race, making it challenging for some boats to reach the finish line, the sailors who participated had a great sail,” Hudson said.

Meanwhile, the club held the first of the single handed races, a series of three races in spring, summer and fall for boats sailed by one sailor alone.

“This is a test of boat handling for the skippers, who have no crew to blame if things get out of hand,” Hudson said.

The first race in the series ran Sunday April 28.

The course was a leeward-windward course, taking the boats from the start line outside Fairwinds’ Schooner Cove Marina around Amelia Island, round Ruth Island, back round Amelia Island and again around Ruth Island before finishing off Fairwinds’ Schooner Cove Marina.

Four boats entered the race, which was sailed in variable winds of 5-15 knots. Light airs are a benefit for single handed racing as the challenges of setting sails in stronger wind are avoided.

Brian Robinson took first place in Flight, followed by Andrew Rycroft in his new 28 foot boat Obliquity in second place and Bill Walters at the helm of Rambunctious  was third. The next two races in this series are in June and September.

 

 

• Time is running short to get ready for the 11th annual   Marine Swap Meet at Independent Marine Supply Store on Highway 4A in Coombs.

Vendors, representatives and customers alike from all over Vancouver Island will flock to Coombs on Saturday, May 11.

The event has become known as a great place to pass on old treasures or find new ones.

The event kicks off at 8 a.m. and runs to 3 p.m.

 

 

• The B.C. Ferry Queen of the North isn’t sitting all alone on the bottom of Grenville Channel in British Columbia’s Inside Passage. She has company.

That company comes in the form of the U.S. Army transport ship General M.G Zalinsky, which went to the bottom near the site of the more recent wreck in September of 1946.

That’s a bit of a problem, because the ship, built in 1919, was loaded down with bombs and oil when she ran into the rocks of Pitt Island.

 

Although her crew of 48 was rescued safely by a tugboat and a nearby passenger steamer, that load of unexploded wartime ordinance stayed on board and remains there to this day. In 2003, the ship began leaking oil into the waters of the channel.

 

 

Just Posted

Terry Mazzei next to a truck after it was struck by lightning, with him inside, on Wednesday afternoon, June 9. He walked away from the incident without injury and the truck sustained only mild damage; a blown front tire and newly broken gas gauge. (Wendy Mazzei photo)
Nanoose Bay man walks away unscathed after lightning strike

VIDEO: ‘We like to think that his dad was watching over him’

Douglas Holmes, current Alberni-Clayoquot Regional District chief administrative officer, is set to take on that position at the Regional District of Nanaimo come late August. (Submitted photo)
Regional District of Nanaimo’s next CAO keen to work on building partnerships

Douglas Holmes to take over top administrator role with RDN this summer

This young fledgling white raven was spotted in the Coombs area on May 16. (Mike Yip photo)
Expert says 2 sets of parents producing rare white ravens in mid-Island area

One of the iconic birds is currently recovering at wildlife centre after being rescued

Flowers planted along Highway 19 in downtown Parksville. (Submitted photo)
City of Parksville plants more than 15,000 annual bedding plants

Residents encouraged to take flower photos and post to social media

New COVID-19 cases on Vancouver Island by local health area for the week of May 30-June 5. (B.C. Centre for Disease Control image)
COVID-19 cases drop again almost everywhere on Vancouver Island

Nanaimo had four new cases last week, down from 22 the week before

At an outdoor drive-in convocation ceremony, Mount Royal University bestows an honorary Doctor of Laws on Blackfoot Elder and residential school survivor Clarence Wolfleg in Calgary on Tuesday, June 8, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff McIntosh
‘You didn’t get the best of me’: Residential school survivor gets honorary doctorate

Clarence Wolfleg receives honorary doctorate from Mount Royal University, the highest honour the school gives out

“They will never be forgotten, every child matters,” says Sioux Valley Chief Jennifer Bone in a video statement June 1. (Screen grab)
104 ‘potential graves’ detected at site of former residential school in Manitoba

Sioux Valley Dakota Nation working to identify, repatriate students buried near former Brandon residential school

The Queen Victoria statue at the B.C. legislature was splattered with what looks like red paint on Friday. (Nicole Crescenzi/News Staff)
Queen Victoria statue at B.C. legislature vandalized Friday

Statue splattered with red paint by old growth forest proponents

Police cars are seen parked outside Vancouver Police Department headquarters on Saturday, January 9, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
Vancouver police officer charged with assault during an arrest in 2019

The service has released no other details about the allegations

Denmark’s Christian Eriksen receives medical attention after collapsing during the Euro 2020 soccer championship group B match between Denmark and Finland at Parken stadium in Copenhagen, Saturday, June 12, 2021. (AP Photo/Martin Meissner, Pool)
Christian Eriksen in stable condition, Euro 2020 match resumes

Eriksen was given chest compressions after collapsing on the field during a European Championship

Members of the Department of Fisheries and Oceans’ Marine Mammal Response Program rescued an adult humpback what that was entangled in commercial fishing gear in the waters off of Entrance Island on Thursday, June 10. (Photo courtesy Marine Mammal Response Program)
Rescuers free humpback ‘anchored’ down by prawn traps off Vancouver Island

Department of Fisheries and Oceans responders spend hours untangling whale

As stories of the horrors of residential schools circulate after the Tk’emlups te Secwepemc First Nation announced it had located what are believed to be the remains of 215 children, Grand Chief Stewart Phillip of the Union of B.C. Indian Chiefs said he feels a connection with the former students. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
2 sides of the same coin: Ex-foster kids identify with residential school survivors

Grand Chief Stewart Phillip says the child welfare system takes Indigenous children from their families

Nathan Watts, a member of the Tseshaht First Nation near Port Alberni, shares his story of substance use, a perspective he said isn’t seen enough. (Photo courtesy of Nathan Watts)
Public shaming, hate perpetuates further substance use: UVic researcher

Longtime addict Nathan Watts offers a user’s perspective on substance use

Most Read