Martin Mars da bomb

Elimination of the Martin Mars water bomber in the Alberni Valley is an emotional pinch for the people of Port Alberni.

To the Editor,

Elimination of the Martin Mars water bomber in the Alberni Valley is an emotional pinch for the people of Port Alberni.

A forest service staff bureaucrat telling the owner of Coulson Group of Companies that “it is none of his business why the government would discontinue a forest fire fighting contract” is lacking respect. OK, so these planes lack someone’s opinion of maneuverability.

This is a further example of the shredding relationship between rural BC, and the big city valuation and the Victoria governance model.

In 1967, I was a 19-year-old logger fighting the Taylor River forest fire when both bombers flew right over our heads at 3,500 feet on a hillside above Sproat Lake. The ground shook and the smoke filled the forest as they dumped their water and went off to scoop more water from the lake. They were massive, powerful, impressive and needed.

With my family a few years later, I drove west up Sutton Pass when both mars planes roared overhead for a drop on an inaccessible mountaintop fire above the pass. Another time, along Highway 4, a mars bomber rose up directly in front of me over the trees having just loaded up from Sproat Lake. What a rush.

Ukee Days summer fair in Ucluelet, my home town, always enjoyed a demonstration water drop from the mars. During the ‘Save Clayoquot Sound’ anti logging protest in 1993, it warmed the loggers’ hearts to have the demonstration mars visit on the ‘Support the Loggers’ day.

I live in Port Alberni now and always go out on my deck to watch when a bomber flies low over the town on its way out to a fire or returning to home base. A recent cruise ship visit to Port Alberni was treated to a water drop demonstration beside the ship in the harbour.

This city and the rural BC communities built this province’s wealth. Bureaucrats and politicians must respect and honour that. Give us something we want and show respect for the millions of dollars that we sent to Victoria.

Bruce Hornidge,

Port Alberni

Just Posted

Firefighters extinguish brush fire near Port Alberni residential area

Fire was discovered in bush off Kitsuksis Creek Trail

BCHL: Battle for Bulldogs’ roster spots heats up as main camp begins

Alberni Valley’s new head coach will get his first look at revamped Jr. A hockey team

BCHL: Alberni Valley Bulldogs add experience to blueline

Jimmy Rayhill commits to Bulldogs as main training camp set to start Aug. 19

Port Alberni cadet learns outdoor skills at Vernon camp

Outdoor skills some of leadership learning activities at annual summer camp

70 years of lifting: Canadian man, 85, could cinch weightlifting championship

The senior gym junkie is on track to win the World Masters Weightlifting championship

U16 B.C. fastpitch team named national champs

Girls went undefeated at national tournament in Calgary

Advocates ‘internationalize’ the fight to free Raif Badawi from Saudi prison

Raif Badawi was arrested on June 17, 2012, and was later sentenced to 1,000 lashes and 10 years in jail for his online criticism of Saudi clerics

Canadian entrepreneurs turning beer byproduct into bread, cookies and profits

Some breweries turn to entrepreneurs looking to turn spent grain into treats for people and their pets

Canada ‘disappointed’ terror suspect’s British citizenship revoked

Jack Letts, who was dubbed “Jihadi Jack” by the U.K. media, has been detained in a Kurdish prison for about two years

Chrystia Freeland condemns violence in Hong Kong, backs right to peaceful assembly

There have been months of protests in the semi-autonomous region

B.C. VIEWS: Log exports and my other errors so far in 2019

Plastic bags, legislature overspending turn out differently

Most Read