The Stephen Mooney family on Youbou Road escaped injury after Crown Zellerbach pickup truck driven by Douglas Phye of Lake Cowichan swerved to miss oncoming vehicle and struck parked car. Two vehicles slid down bank and into Mooney home. Family was inside celebrating birthday when accident occurred. Mishap is second of the kind in several days. Last week Firebird driven by Duncan resident Robert Gollinger struck vehicle owned by Youbou resident Kenneth Ross and pushed car into Ross house. Damage in both two accidents totalled about $15,000. Both Gollinger and Phye have been charged with driving without due care and attention.

Lake Flashback: Seniors home wanted, Co-op going great guns, school accreditation problem

Welcome to Lake Flashback. Reporter Lexi Bainas 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:

According to the Lake Cowichan Gazette of Jan. 14, 2009, the effort to establish a seniors’ supportive housing complex in Lake Cowichan would begin that week with a meeting to establish a non-profit society.

Don Beldessi, who first proposed the idea at a town public hearing last October, wants to get the community talking about it and committing to forming a society.

“I think people in the community are interested in this,” said Beldessi. “Our goal…is to form a non-profit housing society that will get the ball rolling. There’s been a lot of talk about it. Now it’s time for action.”

Input the town received two years ago, in its effort to purchase the J.H. Boyd property from School District 79, indicated that many residents favour some form of seniors’ housing being built in Lake Cowichan.

Beldessi has been in touch with the B.C.-Yukon Legion Housing Society, which assists in getting supportive housing established in communities and helps line up various subsidies, with building designs and even getting government support. He recently visited Legion Manor in Saanich, a housing project supported by the Legion Housing Society, and went on a tour. He is impressed, to say the least.

“It’s gorgeous,” Beldessi said of the 68-suite facility. “It provides two meals a day, laundry service, an activity room, an exercise room and a nice well lit dining room, plus a couple of treatment rooms. It’s a very well run place.”

Beldessi said he’d like to see a facility with 68 to 70 suites, but added that it will in the end be up to the society to decide the size of the facility and where it should be built.

“I think it’s very doable,” said Beldessi.

He said the old J.H. Boyd property is certainly one possible location for such a facility, but noted it doesn’t have to be.

The Lake Cowichan Ratepayers’ Association is behind the idea.

“We’re all for it,” said Rod Peters, president of the ratepayers. “It’s a really good idea. We have to move on it.”

25 years ago:

“Lake Cowichan Co-op members hear good news at annual general meeting” was a big story in the Jan. 19, 1994 issue of The Lake News.

Sales for 1993 amounted to $3,194,588, up $354,468 from 1992: a 12.5 per cent increase, members of the Lake Cowichan Co-operative Society heard the previous week.

“In the last 10 years, we have had a greater volume of sales than in the previous 30 years,” Herb Branting, manager, told members in his annual report. Ten year sales amounted to $50,709,800.

He reported the grocery sales had increased 1.6 per cent over 1992. Meat and produce sales were up as well. Due to a decrease in sales, the hardware department will be closed.

“One of the largest revenues comes from the sale of Tempo Gas to Independent Gas Lake Cowichan,” said Branting, and he encouraged members to purchase gas there.

The outside store front [on the building on South Shore Road] will be renovated and the planter removed this year, he said.

The board of directors report was given by Lorraine Oliver, president of the Society. She announced there will be a two per cent allocation to all members based on each member’s purchases this year. Eighty-one new members joined during the year; total membership stands at 939.

40 years ago:

Sure enough, as predicted last week, there was plenty of angst in the Jan. 17, 1979 edition of The Lake News about the Lake Cowichan Secondary School accreditation situation.

“Board writes ‘prescription’ for LCSS” was the headline.

Faced with the province possibly withdrawing accreditation from the Lake’s only high school, school board chairman Buck Hollingdrake said trustees will review the 59-page report prepared by a provincial evaluation team in “a positive manner” but that “the board is demanding that areas that need improvement be addressed immediately”.

These steps included writing a school philosophy and also ditching a new modular timetable. The evaluation experts found teachers were spending considerably less time in the classroom than was required.

Relations between LCSS and Stanley Gordon School, which evaluators considered poor, must also be improved “as soon as possible”.

Hollingdrake told a group of concerned parents who attended last week’s board meeting that “students have been getting a half-time education”. He said teachers at the school are good individuals but are “collectively at a standstill”.

Other trustees asked for a special meeting to further discuss the report and its implications. New trustee Jean Brown said she was “overwhelmed” by the report.



lexi.bainas@cowichanvalleycitizen.com

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