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Flashback: Two lottery wins, rushed robber leaves bank card behind, amalgamation update

A look back at the history of the Cowichan Lake area

Welcome to Lake Flashback. Reporter Sarah Simpson has been combing through old newspapers with the assistance of the Kaatza Station Museum and Archives so we can jog your memory, give you that nostalgic feeling, or just a chuckle, as we take a look at what was making headlines this week around Cowichan Lake in years gone by.

This week around the Cowichan Lake area…

10 years ago

“All I want for Christmas is a new playground” was a very public letter to Santa that was featured on the front page of the Dec. 4, 2013 Lake Cowichan Gazette.

“‘Thank you Lake Cowichan, we’re nearly there!’ That heartfelt message from the Palsson Elementary School community echoed throughout the community last week. The little town with the great big heart has gone and done it again. On Thursday, Nov. 28, Aviva Canada announced that Palsson’s bid to win the $50,000 grant to build a new playground had made it into the semi-finals. Palsson was just one of the more than 1,000 grant-hopeful projects submitted to Aviva from across Canada. The school project is now one of just 30 left in the running for the $50,000 grant competition.”

“‘We’re just ecstatic and so grateful to the town for coming out and supporting us,’ said Palsson PAC chair and project spear-head, Karen Hoskins. ‘Everyone has been just amazing, but for the final round we need your help more than ever!’”

In other cool news of the day, “Lake Cowichan woman can travel anywhere after winning Dream Lottery” was a Page 2 headline.

“Anne Wise won a $5,000 gift card for a travel agency in BC Children’s Hospital’s Dream Lottery. Although Wise is happy with her win, she says the draw is well worth entering due to the good cause the inevitable funds go towards, and she believes everyone’s a winner in this case.

“‘All the money raised goes towards BC Children’s Hospital; even though some people don’t win, you’re always a winner,’ she said.”

25 years ago

For all those gamblers out there, historical records seem to be telling us this is the week to win the lottery in these parts.

Just Like Anne Wise did a decade ago, a Lake Cowichan resident won the lottery this time 25 years ago as well, according to the Lake News of Dec. 9, 1998.

“Who would be lucky enough to win a lottery, and just before the holidays? Richard Nimmo of Lake Cowichan now has that claim to fame after winning $10,002 on Club Keno. Nimmo, 58-years-old and who works in the logging industry played Keno at the Riverside Inn while having supper.

“‘I was watching the numbers come up with my friends,’ he said. ‘I was in shock when I found out I had matched seven numbers. It was a good night.’

“He had picked seven numbers on a $2 wager. Nimmo called his family immediately to tell them of his winnings. He is now planning a holiday.”

In other money news… but in a slightly different style, OK very different style, was a small story titled “Robber leaves bank card”.

“The RCMP got their man very quickly — but it came with help from the suspect himself after a man robbed Cowichan Motors and in such a rush, left his bank with the clerk.

Terry Bergstrom, manager of Cowichan Motors Esso station in Lake Cowichan said a man approached the counter wanting money from his debit card.

“After the clerk processed the card and it came up as non-sufficient funds, the man put his hand in his pocket, as though he had a weapon. He then told the clerk to open the till. The man then grabbed a small amount of cash from the till and fled.”

Needless to say the suspect was charged.

40 years ago

“Amalgamation formally nixed” was the top headline of the Lake News of Dec. 7, 1983.

“The Lake Cowichan School Board has re-affirmed its opposition to the idea of amalgamation and is basing its continued stand on a reading of the feelings of the community at large.

“In a statement issued in late November, the school board said, ‘based on the information received, the board and community are generally not in favour of amalgamation and the maintenance and improvement of the quality of education is a prime concern.’”

In other news of the day, “A total of $3,400 from the profits of Lake Days in 1983 was handed out to various organizations at the annual Lake Days disbursement meeting held Nov. 30.

“The Lake Days committee decided to hold over $1,000 from the total profits of $4,400 for the 1984 committee so that it could meet early commitments if the need should arise. The Lake Cowichan community hall board and the Lake Cowichan Volunteer Fire Department received the lion’s share of the money handed out. Each received $1,150.”



Sarah Simpson

About the Author: Sarah Simpson

I started my time with Black Press Media as an intern, before joining the Citizen in the summer of 2004.
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