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Vancouver Island residents share their best Christmas memories

What they’re talking about in downtown Courtenay
(Adobe stock photo)

As Christmas draws near, Comox Valley residents are getting ready for the festivities. The Record strolled down Courtenay’s 5th Street to hear people’s best Christmas memories.


Jayne Fogarty and Peter Smallwood

J: “When I was about 14 or 15, my mom decided after all the years of live Christmas trees, she wanted us to have a fake tree. She didn’t want the mess, or any of that. My dad and I were like “WHAT!” and we ended up going into our backyard which was a quarter acre in downtown Toronto. There was a blue spruce that he was going to be taking out in the spring anyway. We cut the blue spruce down, so it ended up being a good Christmas because we had this beautiful blue spruce as our Christmas tree.”

P: “In 1968 my parents moved from Scarborough to a little town in eastern Ontario and we moved on Christmas day, in the middle of the night. It’s something that really sticks out in my mind, that’s for sure.”

J: “My sister lived in that town for a brief time. And he and I dated, and then my sister moved from that town. And our parents didn’t want to drive us the two hours, I was in Toronto. (So we broke up). But it was our first kiss, our first hand-holding, all that stuff. And we realized we never let go. ”

P: “We found each other 46 years later again, and last year was our first Christmas together.”


Bonny Kane

“(My daughter) was born Dec. 21, 1980. She was a lovely child, and I got home in time for Christmas. We had a great big Christmas dinner. All the family was there, it was just a really nice family.

“She and her family live here with my grandchildren. And probably my great-grandchildren shortly. Mind you there’s only four of us. We’re down from a lot to four…. my husband passed away, my mother just passed away, so we’re dwindling. The kids gotta’ start having kids soon [breaks out in laughter].”


Natasha McLean

“As a kid, my dad got me one of those Nokia little pink flip-phones and put it under the tree and called it. So when I was like 13 or 14 I remember the phone did the ‘dadadadada’ [think Jurassic Park when the phone is chiming from the dinosaur dung].”

“One of my worst Christmas memories would be also, very young, I wanted this blue puffy vest from The Gap. And I opened it and I’m like, ‘Oh my gosh! Santa got me this!’ and then my younger brother who’s four years younger, was like ‘No, we got that for you at the mall with dad!’ So my younger brother ruined Santa for me.”

“One of my favourite Christmas memories would be this upcoming Christmas (too). It will be my son’s second Christmas. And we got the in-laws here (from Ontario) to celebrate.”