2017 in review: November

RCMP search for Nicole Bell who was last seen in Malakwa. City council approves a tax increase.


Police are expanding their efforts in the search for Nicole Bell. Bell, 31, was last seen on Sept. 2 in Sicamous and reported missing to police on Sept. 7. Her cell phone was found in Salmon Arm.

With a thick blanket of snow covering the area, the RCMP search of the Sagmoen farm in the 2200 block of Salmon River Road continues.

The RCMP have confirmed the human remains they located on the property on Oct. 21 are those of 18-year-old Traci Genereaux, who was last heard from on May 29 in Vernon.

The Silverbacks take their cheering on the road. The Silverbacks owners offered to pay for the bus and admission tickets so a busload of fans could cheer on the Silverbacks at their game in Vernon.

“The right thing to do for our loyal fans” is how one of the Silverback owners described their effort.

Some of the players echoed the views of their coach and general manager.

“The fans in Salmon Arm are like none other. They are very supportive and super noisy. I can’t even begin to thank the fans for everything they have done for our team,” said team captain Grayson Constable.

Meagan Louis echoes the sentiments of many people with regard to the RCMP ending their search of the Sagmoen farm in Silver Creek.

“As a citizen I feel like we’re kind of left in the dark and the police aren’t releasing any information”

Like many, she wonders how Traci Genereaux died and when charges will be laid. She said Genereaux’s family will be holding a celebration of life for Traci on Tuesday, Nov. 21. It will also be a memorial vigil, she said.

Smartcentres was awarded millions in damages as Supreme Court of BC ruled that three companies affiliated with Smartcentres paid too much for the land where their shopping centre sits. They were awarded $8,020,000 in damages. A numbered company, with Mike Fowler of Richmond named as principal of that company, sold the property to them.

A new hotel will be opening its doors in Salmon Arm in 2019 if all goes according to plan. Hollypark Hotels Corporation has announced that Marriott International has approved its plans to build a $15.5 million dollar Fairfield Inn & Suites hotel at 790-16th St. NE, across from Salmon Arm Secondary’s Jackson campus.

The search for missing women in the North Okanagan and Shuswap took to the skies on Saturday, November 18. The efforts of a group of volunteer searchers were supported by drones operated by Sky Crew Aerial Imagery from Salmon Arm and Crystal Mountain Arial Media from West Kelowna.

After eight hours of deliberation this year, the magic number produced was 1.53 per cent. On Monday, Nov. 20, Salmon Arm council carried out what’s arguably its more important job, guiding where city dollars are directed and how that will affect taxpayers.

A 1.53 percent tax increase in 2018 translates into an increase of $23.31 for the owner of a $350,000 residential property, along with a 3.5 per cent, or $8.10 increase in water user fees.

Six Salmon Arm RCMP police officers were recognized for their bravery and dedication at Government House in Victoria related to a December 2015 incident in Eagle Bay where police were called after a man, armed with knives, barricaded himself in a home and eventually lit it ablaze.

The six officers are: Cpl. Richard Gingras (now with Vernon Police Dog Service), Constables Patrick Evanishen, David Goodyear, Trevor Medernach, Adam Poitras, and David Warner (now with Enderby detachment)

Rob and Ingrid van Varseveld took top marks in the couples challenge with a sensuous rumba and Fred Green and his instructor, Ingalise Abbott won the pro-am division in the popular Dancing with the Shuswap Stars. But the big winner was the Larch Hills chalet which will receive an expansion thanks to the $43,000 raised at the event.

Lena Alhamad has accomplished what few Syrian women have, getting a driver’s license. She earned it two days after her husband, Hussam Al Hassan got his. With a wide smile, Alhamad explains, in her ever-improving English, that she likes everything about her new home – the people and the environment.

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