Members of the Fleet Diving Unit Pacific and their furry friend run laps around the track at Belmont secondary on Sunday during the fifth annual Turkey Run.

Turkey time for families on the West Shore

Colwood-based fleet diving unit’s annual Turkey Run takes different form, raises $20,000 for food hampers

Despite a drastic cut in resources this year, Fleet Diving Unit Pacific’s annual Turkey Run still managed to raise over $20,000 for the West Shore Christmas Hamper Fund.

The result means every family that receives a hamper this holiday season will also have a turkey on the table as part of their holiday feast.

The accomplishment is all the more impressive considering the unit, part of Canadian Forces Base Esquimalt, had a month to regroup after their regular main event, a 35-kilometre run through Langford and Colwood, was cancelled.

Fundraising plans hit a roadblock this year when West Shore RCMP was forced to pull their traffic support for the run due to budget restrictions, having allocated extra resources to security after separate targeted attacks saw two military members killed in Ottawa and Quebec in October.

Instead, the fleet diving unit held a barbecue at Millstream Village on Saturday in partnership with Everything Wine, with volunteers cycling on stationary bikes and others canvassing the crowd for donations. And on Sunday, nearly 70 people took to the track at Belmont secondary to do a relay style run, with participants switching off as they tired.

“We didn’t have that beginning-to-finish goal, so we had a group of people running all day,” said Walter Dubeau, one of the founders of the Turkey Run and a training officer for the diving unit.

“I’m very proud of the girls and guys at the fleet diving unit here. If I didn’t have all these people, this event wouldn’t happen.”

The community has been extremely supportive of the event since its inception five years ago, he added.

“We put it out there and everybody stepped up and got it going. We raise the money, but they give it. I have a list of over 50 businesses that gave us donations for the Turkey Run.”

The event has raised $97,870 over the last five years, and there’s still time for the unit to break the $100,000 threshold; they’re accepting donations until Jan. 1.

Dubeau’s drive to make a difference in the community is palpable, and contagious. “Come and join us!” he exclaimed. “The more people participate and join in, the better this thing is going to be.”

For more information or to make a donation, email him at walterdubeau@gmail.com, or drop off cash donations to the Goldstream Food Bank, 761 Station Ave., and specify the donation is for the Turkey Run.

acowan@goldstreamgazette.com

Just Posted

Vancouver Island overdue for the big one, can also expect mega-thrust tsunami

The last big earthquake was 70 years ago in Courtenay

Most Victoria transit takers thank their driver: poll

Bus riders thank drivers on Transit Driver Appreciation Day

Volunteer needed to empty dog poop can in Saanich Park

Local volunteers do the work of irresponsible dog owners at Mount Doug

Sexual assault charge dropped against former CFB Esquimalt member

Navy Lt. Ronald Clancy was charged with two counts of sexual assault in August 2018

BC Ferries considers passenger only ferry between West Shore and Victoria

Royal Bay, Esquimalt and Ship Point considered as part of study into new route

VIDEO: RCMP ask kids to help name soon-to-be police dogs

13 German shepherd puppies will be born this year

Horvat scores 16 seconds into OT as Canucks beat Blackhawks 3-2

Pettersson sets rookie scoring record for Vancouver

No injuries, pollution in Vancouver Harbour ship collision: Transport Canada

Transportation Safety Board says it has deployed a team of investigators look into the incident

Budget 2019: Five things to watch for in the Liberals’ final fiscal blueprint

Finance Minister Bill Morneau will release the Trudeau government’s final budget on Tuesday

New concussion guidelines launched for Canada’s Olympians, Paralympians

The guidelines will be in effect at this summer’s Pan American, Parapan American Games in Lima, Peru

Alphonso Davies doubtful for Canada game against French Guiana in Vancouver

Canada will be without injured captain Scott Arfield and veteran Will Johnson

Watchdog called after man who yelled racial slurs at B.C. vigil hurt during arrest

BC RCMP say man was ‘acting suspiciously’ at prayer vigil for victims of New Zealand mosque shootings

NDP’s Jagmeet Singh steps into the House of Commons, making history

Burnaby South MP becomes first visible minority to lead a federal party in the House of Commons

Most Read