Governor General Julie Payette’s first official visit to B.C. this week includes a list of honours bestowed on people for their public service, acts of bravery and volunteer work. The ceremony takes place Wednesday at Government House in Victoria and will be live-streamed on the Governor General’s website starting at 2 p.m.
• Basketball coach Kathryn Shields is being promoted within the Order of Canada at the ceremony, after being appointed to the Order in 2016. She has coached the Canadian national women’s team and the women’s varsity team at the University of Victoria, pioneering women in coaching. Other recipients are below.
Medals of Bravery:
• A rescue from a crashed airplane at Crawford Bay on Kootenay Lake is commemorated by Medals of Bravery for Paul Hindson and Corole Van Ruymbeke of Crawford Bay, Juergen Baetzel of Gray Creek, Tobias MacDonald of Delta and Brant Hannah of Calgary. On Aug. 20, 2014, they pulled two people from the burning plane minutes before an explosion.
• Const. Craig Barker and Const. Paul Hykaway of the Victoria Police receive medals for their search of a burning house to ensure tenants had escaped, Jan. 3, 2014.
• Janson Chapman of Victoria receives a medal for rescuing his friend, who had fallen into the frigid water of Lower Myra Falls near Gold River on March 6, 2017. Finding her injured and clinging to a log, he lifted her out of the ice-rimmed water and carried her for 40 minutes to his car to drive to hospital.
• Oak Bay firefighter Gregory Swan was off duty and in Medford, Ore. when he rescued a man from a burning car that had crashed into a tree beside a busy highway on July 18, 2015.
Meritorious Service Decorations:
• Chief Charlene Belleau of the Esk’etemc First Nation near Williams Lake is honoured for her advocacy for improved health and social programs and campaign to end violence against women.
• Cherie Davidson of Victoria founded Island Heart to Heart, an education and support program for cardiac patients and their families.
• Merna Forster of Victoria is a historian and author who campaigned to include images of notable Canadian women on banknotes, resulting in rights activist Viola Desmond being chosen to appear on the $10 bill.
• Jim Michie of Pritchard B.C. was working for Fisheries and Oceans Canada in 1999 when he developed a restorative justice program to deal with conflicts related to fisheries and wildlife infractions, to reduce repeat offences and improve the department’s relationship with Indigenous communities.
• Brenda and Patrick Montani of Kelowna created Bicycles for Humanity, a volunteer organization that delivers bikes to Africa.
• Sooke artist Carey Newman created The Witness Blanket, a structure with residential school artifacts such as doors, shoes and children’s drawings woven into it. It was exhibited across Canada.
• Physican Ron Abrahams and midwife Sarah Payne of Vancouver created a new model of health care for substance-abusing women and their drug-exposed newborns.
Medal for Volunteers:
• Jess Hansen of Terrace has volunteered for 10 years with the NorthWest Therapeutic Riding Association, providing therapy for people with developmental, physical and psychological disabilities.
• Bernard LaFrance of Nanaimo volunteers at his church with building and grounds maintenance, transporting donated food to food banks and driving parishioners to and from church.
• Tom Lott of Sooke serves with the Royal Canadian Legion Branch 54, and is a volunteer for his church and as a volunteer driver for Cancer Drive.
• Margaret Monro of Salt Spring Island is a long-time volunteer with Salt Spring Senior Services Society who established a caregiver support group that looks after Alzheimer’s patients.
Police Order of Merit:
The Governor General is presenting awards to Deputy RCMP Commissioner Craig Callens of Surrey, Assistant RCMP Commissioner James Gresham of Surrey, Superintendent James Faulkner of Victoria, Deputy Chief Constable David Green of Saanich Police Department, Corporal Brian Kerr of Victoria (RCMP and Central Saanich Police), RCMP Superintendent Gary Leydier of Surrey, RCMP Superintendent Ward Lymburner of Surrey, Corporal Brian Kerr of Victoria (RCMP and Central Saanich Police) and Chief Constable Anthony Palmer of Vancouver Police.