Letters: Above and beyond

Shirley fire chief lauded for dedication and commitment

I am writing this letter to express my gratitude to Chief Donovan Ray of the Shirley Volunteer Fire Department (SVFD).  As wife of the captain, who has been on the SVFD for close to 10 years and Otter Point Volunteer Fire Department preceding that, I have seen the fire department go through some big changes over the last little while.

There was a time not long ago when there seemed to be nobody willing to fulfill the duties as chief, and hence there was some worry over the future existence of the SVFD.  Thankfully, competent Rob VanVeen stepped up to the task, but with over 20 years of volunteer service to the fire department, I believe he was hoping he could pass the torch on to someone young and keen.

I breathed an audible sigh of relief when Donovan joined the fire department.  It was immediately clear that Donovan was willing, determined, committed and qualified to lead the SVFD ahead.  His integrity in being physically, mentally and emotionally on call, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, has soared above and beyond what is required.

I know from my husband that fire practises are intense and demanding… as are the calls that our volunteers are responding to.

When someone has stepped up to the plate for the safety of Shirley and its visitors, devoted unimaginable time to preparing, organizing and running weekly practises, handling administrative duties, organizing extra-training and made himself available 24/7 while still working full time and being a devoted partner, I believe they deserve heaps of support from the community.

I am a mother of two young children. We live an hour’s drive from the closest hospital and 20 minutes drive from the nearest ambulance. If there is an emergency, and time is of the essence, our survival is dependent upon the health and integrity of our SVFD.

In my time in Shirley, I have never felt as confident in the SVFD and its Chief Donovan, as I do today.  The level of devotion our chief has shown is truly inspiring and makes me feel confident as a mother that if an emergency were to arise, we would have some of the best responding to us, long before anyone else could get to our rural home.  As a proud Shirley resident and mother, I would like to say thank-you to Chief Donovan and I truly hope he will remain Shirley’s chief for many years to come.

Shirley resident and mother.

Amanda Swinimer-Burley

Shirley

Just Posted

Food service workers at Victoria airport demonstrate for second time in four months

Negotiations continue to drag on with employer Compass Group Canada, VAA refuses to engage

Saanich councillor leads CRD as board chair

Colin Plant vows to seek partial leave from teaching to commit to board

Passenger passes out on a bus in Sooke

Man was revived and was alert and coherent

Active investigation into reported sexual assault at CFB Esquimalt

An Oct. 5 allegation is being investigated by Canadian Forces National Investigation Service

Sooke school district board chair, vice chair acclaimed

Ravi Parmar will serve a second term as chair

People flocking to Vancouver Island city to see hundreds of sea lions

Each year the combination of Steller and California sea lions take over Cowichan Bay

Vancouver Island remembers

Important stories shared as Islanders salute those who made the greatest sacrifice

Supreme Court hears case on migrant detainees’ rights to challenge incarceration

Currently, migrants who do not hold Canadian citizenship can only challenge detention through an immigration tribunal or a judicial review.

Canada Post issues new offer to employees as eBay calls on Ottawa to end strikes

Ebay is calling on the federal government to legislate an end to the Canada Post contract dispute, warning that quick action is needed to ensure retailers don’t lose out on critical Black Friday and Cyber Monday sales.

No G20 member has climate plan strong enough to meet Paris targets: report

Canada’s push to be a world leader in the fight against climate change may be hampered by its distinction for producing the most greenhouse gas emissions per person among the world’s 20 largest economies.

Federal and provincial government spend more dough on ecological ‘Timbits’

Ottawa and Victoria spend $14.65 million completing conservation area in southeastern B.C.

Talent show: B.C. girl, 8, memorizes entire periodic table

Grade 4 student Maya Lakhanpal heads to B.C. talent show finals with unique talent

B.C. teacher suspended 5 days for touching colleague’s buttocks

Lancer Kevin Price of Chilliwack has handed the retroactive suspension for 2017 incidents

Commercial trucks banned from left lane of Coquihalla

B.C.’s Ministry of Transportation has introduced a new program that hopes to prevent accidents and closures on the Coquihalla Highway.

Most Read