The body of a 65-year-old local woman was recovered from a vehicle submerged in the ocean near the 7700-block of West Coast Road on May 30.
The woman is believed to be Louise Lemire-Elmore, who was a resident on the large, waterfront property.
Police, ambulance, Sooke Royal Canadian Marine Search and Rescue, and search and rescue (SAR) technicians from 442 Squadron responded around 11:30 a.m., after a local resident alerted Lemire-Elmore’s husband that her car was in the water.
SAR divers recovered the remains from the submerged vehicle around 12:50 p.m. after a preliminary search of the area did not locate her.
Tire marks indicated the vehicle was driven off the driveway near her house, over the rocky embankment and beach and into the ocean.
The submerged car, which was facing perpendicular to the driveway, was seen a short distance from the shoreline.
According to Staff Sgt. Steve Wright, it is currently unknown what circumstances preceded the accident, but foul play is not suspected. Wright would not confirm the identity of the body at the time, but said the woman was in good health.
She was last seen at 1 p.m. on May 29, and it is currently unknown when the tragic accident occurred within the 24 hour window.
Lemire-Elmore’s husband was at another residence at the time of the incident, and was unable to reach her by phone yesterday night. She was expected to appear at an engagement in Victoria yesterday night, but it is currently unconfirmed whether she appeared.
A man, reported to be her husband Bruce Lemire-Elmore, was seen sitting on a bench visibly upset on the embankment as the scene unfolded.
The B.C. Coroners Service was called to investigate the time of the accident.
Louise Lemire-Elmore will be honoured in song this week.
The Victoria Philharmonic Choir and Music Director Peter Butterfield will be dedicating the Saturday, June 9 performance of J.S. Bach’s Mass In B Minor with orchestra to Lemire-Elmore, a founding member of the choir.
“The tragic accident … was a profound shock to the members of the Victoria Philharmonic Choir,” said Joan Athey. “Louise was a founding member, founding donor, a board member and a mainstay in the alto section.”
A graduate of St. Ann’s Academy in 1963, Lemire-Elmore majored in Music and English at the University of Toronto and taught for a number of years in Toronto elementary schools, specializing in children’s choirs.
After returning to Victoria with her family in 1981, she served as church organist and continued to enjoy singing in larger choirs.
The police investigation into Lemire-Elmore’s death is ongoing.
“Louise’s life has always been one of nurturing, educating, and making the world more beautiful, whether she was singing, running a fundraiser or creating wonderful food for hungry choristers after a concert,” said choir member Sherry LePage. “The Victoria Philharmonic Choir was very dear to Louise’s heart, and she has many friends among the singers who will miss her and her rich alto voice terribly.”
The concert in her memory is at 8 p.m. at the First Metropolitan United Church, 932 Balmoral Rd. Visit www.vpchoir.ca. for more information. Tickets are available at Munro’s, Ivy’s and Tanner bookstores and Long and McQuade.
“Choristers are expressing a deep desire to honour Louise’s commitment to excellence by singing this beautiful Mass to the very best of our ability,” said LePage.