In May, the Bulletin published a picture of a memorial bench on the Mark Creek Trail which was damaged by vandals.
Immediately after, Kimberley business Tyee Log and Timber contacted the Bulletin to try to trace the family so they could replace the bench, which they have now done.
The bench was originally placed by the children of Walter and Kitty Reid, and it turns out this was not the first time it was vandalized.
Son Russell wanted to take the opportunity to publicly thank Tyee for donating the replacement bench.
“The bench was installed in 2003 as a memorial to our parents, Walter and Kitty Reid who died in 2002 and 2003 respectively. They had lived in Kimberley since 1946 after Walter returned from the army to resume his job with CM&S (then Cominco) at the concentrator. They were well known in the community, Walter was a volunteer fireman with the city and a shift boss at the concentrator for many years. To say that the highly social Kitty knew everyone in town would have been only a slight exaggeration. They had a very active lifestyle being involved with curling, square dancing, cross country skiing, golfing and hiking. They traveled extensively but always believed that none of the places they had visited or seen could equal Kimberley as a wonderful place to live.
“Because of their love of hiking, of the community and of each other (inseparable for over 60 years), the family thought a bench with both of their names on the lovely Mark Creek trail, one they would walk very often, would be an appropriate memorial. The bench, it was hoped, would help others enjoy the same commune with nature that our parents loved.
“We found a suitable spot beside the creek and, with the city’s concurrence, installed a granite bench. We were proud of the result but, two years later, were dismayed to learn that some people had destroyed the bench. After much soul searching, the family decided to replace the bench with an identical model and the hope that this senseless act of vandalism was an occurrence unlikely to be repeated. Our hopes were dashed when we learned recently that they did it again. Someone took pleasure in destroying an attractive, useful item by smashing it with a stone.
“This time, we said enough. Why rebuild only to maybe have it destroyed again? But then Tyee Builders of Kimberley learned of the situation and came up with a suggestion that will both benefit the community and meet our objectives. They offered to donate and install one of their benches in the same location. We gratefully accepted their offer. The Reid family would like to express our appreciation to Tyee Builders for their thoughtfulness in ensuring that the public will still have a restful place to enjoy nature and our parents’ memory will continue to live on in a community that they loved so well.”