Renfrew-Collingwood Community News

News stories from the Renfrew-Collingwood community in East Vancouver


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November 2022 issue of RCC News is here

Check out the great events and activities happening in our neighbourhood in this latest issue of the Renfrew-Collingwood Community News and stay connected to your neighbours and community.

Renfrew-Collingwood Community News November 2022

View the new issue.

In this issue:

  • Legion Branch 179 update
  • Remembering dad on Remembrance Day
  • Seniors’ Morning at the Movies: Classic films based on books
  • A-SLAM releases new music video
  • Fall Environmental Stewardship series from Still Moon
  • Read On! Join English discussion groups in RC

Do you have a local story to tell or an event to share? We’d love to hear about it! Email rccnews-editorial@cnh.bc.ca.

The deadline for the December 2022 issue is November10.

We welcome story submissions from 300 to 400 words long. Accompanying photos must be high resolution in a jpg file at least 1 MB large and include a photo caption and the name of the photographer.

 

 


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Remembering dad on Remembrance Day

BY BRYDEN FERGUSSON

Ian Fergusson’s army photo. Photos courtesy of Bryden Fergusson
Ian Fergusson’s army photo. Photos courtesy of Bryden Fergusson

Remembrance Day often brought mixed feelings in our family. My father had all the trappings of a successful World War II veteran – Normandy veteran who landed on Juno Beach, medals, veteran’s pension, war memorabilia – along with the respect and gratitude from family, friends and the community. We were able to buy our home with the help of a mortgage from the Veterans Land Administration, a federal board created in the 1940s to assist veterans in buying homes.

Growing up, I was the envy of my friends – wow, a dad who fought in the war – displaying and playing with war memorabilia such as bullets and shell casings. When older, I travelled to Europe, visiting Normandy, war museums, cemeteries and areas where he would have fought and eventually be wounded.

My dad would often watch Remembrance Day ceremonies on TV, but he rarely attended ceremonies in person. My mom had to persuade him after many years to get his medals that were stored in Ottawa and apply for his veteran’s pension resulting from his war wounds.

He rarely, if ever, talked about his war experiences. At most, he would describe the funny experiences, like always getting lost even though he was part of a reconnaissance unit whose job was to locate the enemy and report back their location. He only joined the Legion in his later years, even though he enjoyed a good pub.

What people did not see was what we saw at home. Physical signs such as large burn scars, deafness in one ear, an eye that wept, shrapnel embedded and never removed. Emotional scars were less visible: nightmares, excessive drinking and fear of large crowds and loud noises.

Remembrance Day means different things to different people. I often attend Remembrance Day ceremonies and have brought my children so they can better understand the sacrifice that veterans like my father experienced.

My father was part of a large silent group that found the memories too painful to attend ceremonies or participate in the benefits and gratitude of being a veteran.

D-Day letter sent to troops before their departure for Normandy in 1944.
D-Day letter sent to troops before their departure for Normandy in 1944.

Bryden Fergusson is a longtime resident of Renfrew-Collingwood.

Copyright 2022 Renfrew-Collingwood Community News


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Windermere fitness park is now open for the Renfrew-Collingwood community

Come try it for yourself

BY JULIE CHENG

Local residents test their strength, climbing and balance skills on the new stations at the Windermere Community Fitness Park located at Lillooet and East 27th Avenue. Photos courtesy of Julie Cheng
Local residents test their strength, climbing and balance skills on the new stations at the Windermere Community Fitness Park located at Lillooet and East 27th Avenue. Photos courtesy of Julie Cheng

When Brad White retired in 2021 as the Windermere physical and health education department head, his dream was to leave a legacy of fitness and health for the community. It was the middle of the COVID-19 pandemic, and opportunities for indoor exercise were limited.

“I believe that creating an outdoor fitness park at the edge of the school campus that is easily accessible to everyone will be a valuable community asset,” he wrote in the March 2021 issue of the Renfrew-Collingwood Community News.

“Everyone in the community, from students who are missing their school clubs and sports, to seniors who are having to forego their usual group exercise sessions, will be able to visit a dedicated outdoor fitness facility.”

Now Brad White’s dream has come true. With the support of the Windermere Parent Advisory Council and donations from local residents and businesses to funders from all levels of government, the Windermere Community Fitness Park was opened in August 2022. It’s located at Lillooet and East 27th Avenue on the grounds of Windermere high school.

Local residents are invited to enjoy the exercise apparatus of the Windermere Community Fitness Park outside of school hours.
Local residents are invited to enjoy the exercise apparatus of the Windermere Community Fitness Park outside of school hours.

The fitness park is designed to fit 30 students during class hours. Outside of school hours, all residents are invited to make use of it in the fresh outdoors. Best of all, it’s free.

Fundraising continues for additional amenities including signage, seating, landscaping and a table tennis court.

To donate or to find more information, visit https://windermerefitnesspark.com/.

Windermere fitness park
The Windermere Community Fitness Park opened in August 2022.