Letter to the Editor

A survivor gives thanks What is the most beautiful sound you can imagine? To different people it would it would be a different sound at different…

A survivor gives thanks

What is the most beautiful sound you can imagine?

To different people it would it would be a different sound at different times.

To me, on Friday afternoon, August 29,  it was the distinctly unique sound of an approaching helicopter.

It had been 21 days, since Saturday afternoon on August 9, that I had been stranded on an old mining road.

My truck was mired in mud. I knew immediately that I couldn’t go for help; I would have to wait for help to come to me.

I also knew that it would be at least two weeks before anyone knew for sure I was missing.

I was right.

August 26, 27 and 28  saw the search for me expand and intensify, and then, at 2:25 p.m. on August 29, I heard the most beautiful sound you can imagine.

I was very weak. Every joint in my body was stiff and achy, but, moving as quickly as I could, I pulled on my boots and came out of my tent and there was that magnificent red and white bird circling above me.

The landing lights flashed and I knew I had been seen. My rescuers had arrived.

Between 2:25 p.m. and approximately 4:30 p.m. on that Friday afternoon I was about to meet six really great people.

The first of these are the two young men that decided to go out of their way while flying from Dawson to Mayo.

Kit Brink and Brent Van Sickle, in my book you guys are pretty special.

In less than an hour we were landing in Mayo, and that is when I met Joan Ewing and Loralee Johnstone, the volunteer ambulance attendants, and nurse Rachelle Wallace.

I was immediately transported to the Mayo nursing station where I received a thorough, competent, professional examination that was tempered with TLC and compassion.

I also had the pleasure of meeting Dr. Magid Bakri, a gentle man who even took the time to go outside and examine my dog.

Those of you who know me understand that it is not often that I am at a loss for words.

I do not have the words to express my deep, sincere feeling for those six people or for the oh so many people who have shown so much love, compassion and friendship for me and my wife Jude.

To the RCMP — while you searched for me you cared for her. Thank you.

To the emergency measures organization, Yukon government, department of Highways, to the placer miners, to the truckers, to the numerous volunteers … thank you.

To the many, many, many friends and acquaintances that phoned, or e-mailed, who sent cards, flowers, food, thank you. In a time of need, you were there. As you feared the worst, you prayed for the best.

And to my family, my children, my grandchildren and, especially, my wife Jude, who is also my soulmate and best friend. I love you and thank God for you.

The Yukon is a special place, and Yukoners are special people. I am proud to be one of you.

Thank you all!

Dave Layzell and Brandy


And so does his wife…

How do you express a heartfelt thank you to so many wonderful people?

To have the support of family, co-workers and dear friends, who never left my side was such a comfort.

For the prayers, phone calls, dropping off of food, care, compassion and concern I will be forever grateful.

My compliments to the RCMP for their exemplary help above and beyond the call of duty.

The kindness and caring shown by Const. Kendra Hannigan, Const. Amanda Galenzoske, Cpl. Ramsey and Sgt. Tom Wyers of the Whitehorse detachment and Const. Stelter and Sgt. Gaudet of the Dawson City detachment was so appreciated.

To all the RCMP detachments in rural Yukon who were involved, the placer miners and members of the KPMA, the conservation officers, emergency measures organization and Yukon government Highways crews, and all the aircraft and pilots who had been notified and who were on the lookout for my husband and our dog, I can only express my sincere thank you.

To Kit Brink and Brent Van Sickle, of Fireweed Helicopters, Dawson base, who decided, on August 29, to take a diversion on their way from Dawson to Mayo and fly over Clear Creek and check the area again, your compassion and willingness to assist is a credit to the type of character you both obviously possess. Thank you for caring enough to go out of your way to rescue my husband Dave and our dog Brandy. Your efforts and timing saved their lives.

In the community of Mayo, ambulance attendants Loralee Johnstone and Joan Ewing, nurse Rachelle Wallace and Dr. Bakri, who not only looked after Dave but also checked out Brandy.

And then, more thanks for Loralee and Kevin Johnstone for their wonderful care of Dave and Brandy till we were able to get to Mayo to bring them home.

Everyone, please know that you touched me very deeply. To say thank you seems so little, but it comes from the bottom of my heart.

Jude Layzell and family


Harper vs. the pesky people

Maybe I need my hearing checked.

I’ll swear I just heard local Conservative MP candidate Darrell Pasloski on local media, claiming that Stephen Harper knows how to make a minority government work.

Get back on message, Darrell.

Harper called this election precisely on the grounds that the current parliament was “dysfunctional.”

Translation: in spite of surviving 41 consecutive non confidence motions, Harper wants total control, with no pesky opposition questioning his authority.

There’s a word for that, Darrell. It begins with “D,” but it’s not Democracy.

Ken Bolton

(Editor’s note – the writer is seeking the NDP nomination for the Yukon riding.)