Bear pays respects at Okanagan cemetery

Amateur photographer captures brown bear strolling among Vernon graves on Mother’s Day

Going to visit his mom, Eleanor, in the Vernon Cemetery, Rory White got more than he bargained for Sunday.

Since Eleanor’s passing in 2001, White takes lilacs to her every year on Mother’s Day, as she loved that particular flower. On Sunday, at about 3:20 p.m., White turned onto the cemetery’s Legion Way and parked about halfway down the roadway, as that’s where Eleanor is buried.

He thought he saw a dog moving among the headstones but, in fact, what White saw was something a little bigger than a dog but also with four legs and fur: a bear.

“The bear was a brown bear that appeared to be shedding his winter coat so was quite light in colour,” said White, a school bus driver and photography buff. “It was moving slowly along, though, just minding its own business, checking out the flowers. There was a lady sort of behind where I was at the beginning of Legion Way and she was oblivious to the bear.

READ ALSO: Black bear dines at Summerland rabbit hutch

“I got out of my car and had my camera so started taking pictures and indicated to the lady I had passed that the bear was there. She was immediately concerned, and, thus, I offered for her to get in my car and I would take her to her vehicle which was up ahead of mine.”

READ ALSO: Black bear helps himself to some dinner in Peachland woman’s garden

After watching the bear for a short period of time, and seeing it was not being aggressive in any way, White and the woman waited until the bear passed them heading north into the old part of the cemetery, and the woman went to her car. A couple of other cars, said White, stopped on the main road of the cemetery to take pictures but nobody got out of their vehicles.

“I would say no one was in danger and it was just a pleasant and kind of rare encounter,” said White. “The bear clearly wanted to get further into the woods as it was drawing more attention, so it just kept moving along, hurrying up a bit toward the end of that. It lasted all of about five-to-eight minutes.”



roger@vernonmorningstar.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

 

Just Posted

RCMP report woman arrested after ramming police cruiser

Suspect wanted for crimes allegedly committed in Kelowna, Salmon Arm and 100 Mile House

Axe throwing, road hockey among Salmon Arm food drive festivities

Fill the Pantry event wraps up on Monday, Feb. 17 with day of activities

Salvation Army’s Coldest Night of the Year fundraiser in Salmon Arm welcomes you

Make community connections while taking a walk and contributing to $35,000 goal

Letter: South Shuswap incorporation a foregone conclusion?

Writer overwhelmed with information at committee meeting

Snapshot: Valentine’s donations to Shuswap organizations

Shuswap SPCA, SAFE Society receive some love from SASCU Insurance

Kelowna’s Family YMCA opens doors on Family Day

The entire day was free for the community

Canucks acquire forward Tyler Toffoli from Kings in push for playoffs

Vancouver sends Schaller, Madden, pick to L.A.

South Okanagan woman reflects on prestigious win at Westminster dog show

“Polly” the Scottish deerhound was crowned best in breed and reserve best hound.

Wild weekend results in pair of losses for Salmon Arm Silverbacks

Away games ahead before Feb. 23 contest versus Cents at Shaw Centre

New highway proposed between Alberta and B.C.

The route would connect Red Deer to Kamloops

Wet’suwet’en and B.C. government have been talking Aboriginal title for a year

Coastal GasLink says it has agreements with all 20 elected First Nations councils along the 670-kilometre route

Trudeau tightlipped on plan to end protests ‘quickly and peacefully’

The prime minister, who cancelled a two-day trip to Barbados this week to deal with the crisis at home

Sicamous Eagles’ playoff hopes dashed by Storm

Kamloops team wins 7-4 in Feb. 14 contest

B.C. budget expected to stay the course as economic growth moderates

Finance minister said ICBC costs have affected budget

Most Read