Central Saanich remembers former fire chief Forrest Owens at the Saanich Fairgrounds

Hundreds of firefighters, families and friends gathered on Sunday to remember Forest Owens, the pillar of the Saanich Peninsula.

Owens, who served as an assistant fire chief in Central Saanich during a career that spanned 35 years, died unexpectedly from complications of cancer on July 21 at the age of 64. His death resounded throughout Central his Saanich and the region.

We continue to mourn the loss of a dedicated public servant. He is a lifelong learner and, through his passion for firefighting, is deeply involved in the well-being and safety of his family, friends and his longtime hometown of Central Saanich. Volunteering that saw Owens fulfill a variety of roles in a wide range of organizations, from sports to local historical societies.

An unofficial count of more than 800 people filled the RCMP barn at the Saanich Fairgrounds during Sunday’s memorial service, Esquimalt Fire Chief Steve Selvich said when he introduced himself as a friend of Owens. , perhaps spoke for most of them in his eulogy.

“He was a kind and gentle person who loved and cared for everyone he met,” Selvic said. “He was loved by many and will live forever in our hearts and minds.”

According to the official obituary, Owens is survived by his wife of 27 years, Anita Owens, four children, four grandchildren, first wife Gail, mother Sharon, stepmother Donna, brothers Andy and Elliot, and Bequeathed by many friends and family.

Sunday’s memorial service began with a procession of uniformed firefighters, police and other emergency workers representing multiple departments marching from nearby Sterley’s Secondary School to the fairgrounds. Also participating were his two vehicles from the central Saanich Fire Department, including one of his with Owens’ helmet on.

Led by color guards and accompanied by a pipe band of musicians from Greater Victoria and Greater Vancouver, men and women in dark uniforms eventually flutter from the ladders of two fire trucks standing at the entrance to the firehouse. We passed under the Canadian flag. fairgrounds.

Hundreds of people standing on either side of the road leading to the RCMP barn quietly greeted the group approaching the building. stood silently under the scorching sun for nearly three minutes.He was followed by members of the Owens family, most of the uniformed marchers, and members of the public.

If the mood outside the hall was solemn with ceremonies and command management events, the actual memorial inside the hall contained many lighthearted moments. The speaker shared what Owens called Home Story, which revolves around his salmon fishing exploits and easy-going personality. .

They included the story of Owens starting a conflagration on his property in order to remove himself a full shed left behind by the previous owner.

“So instead of properly disposing of it, Forrest decided to set it on fire,” Servik said. “Everything was going smoothly until things in the shed started exploding and it turned into a raging hell,” Serbic said. Owens called the fire department for help, but asked his colleagues to keep quiet. I asked you to keep it. Not surprisingly, his colleague was taking pictures. According to Serbick, it shows that Owens “has this little garden house and has this little garden house and stands in the middle of this fire and this little water comes out and makes no difference at all.” .

But speakers and speakers also revealed that Owens made a difference in their lives.

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Central Saanich remembers former fire chief Forrest Owens at the Saanich Fairgrounds

Source link Central Saanich remembers former fire chief Forrest Owens at the Saanich Fairgrounds

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