The search for Ben Kilmer was one of the biggest stories in the Cowichan Valley in 2018. (Lexi Bainas/Citizen)

Editorial: 2018 a year of weighty subjects in Cowichan

One story this year captured the imagination of Cowichan residents like no other

Last year was weighty. It’s the best description we can come up with as we take a look back at our top stories of 2018 for our year in review, which starts in the paper today and continues in our Friday edition.

In the spring City of Duncan and Municipality of North Cowichan residents wrestled with the idea of amalgamating into one big unit. It was a fight that divided people, especially in Duncan, where folks were concerned about losing the identity of their small city. Politicians took sides and began to actively campaign for the “yes” and “no” camps.

In the end, the status quo has been maintained, but the City of Duncan must still look uneasily at upcoming expenditures they will face in the coming years with a limited land area and a growing population. We haven’t heard the last of the issues amalgamation surfaced, even though residents won’t be going to the polls on that question again in the near future.

Also on the political front, municipal elections saw lots of new faces on our local governments. Three new mayors took office in Duncan, North Cowichan and the Town of Lake Cowichan, with almost wholesale changes of councils in Duncan and North Cowichan as well. The jury’s still out on this new crop of fresh faces.

One story this year captured the imagination of Cowichan residents like no other, and that was the disappearance and search for Ben Kilmer, husband and father of two. The tale ultimately ended in tragedy, but not before the Cowichan Valley showed its heart with an outpouring of support and love.

Other notable stories included the advent of an overdose prevention site in Duncan, a symptom of the opioid crisis that continues to claim lives at an unprecedented rate in B.C.

After several failed attempts it was a red letter day when an emergency women’s cold weather shelter finally found a home and opened its doors in North Cowichan in December. Homelessness and affordability are yet another crisis that comes with Cowichan into the New Year.

What will capture our hearts and imaginations in 2019? You’ll just have to read the Citizen to find out.

Just Posted

Caps bow out after back-to-back overtime losses

Wenatchee Wild eliminate Cowichan from playoffs

Cowichan-Malahat-Langford constituents on board with national clean energy plan

Energy systems in Canada are currently responsible for 80 per cent of the country’s GHGs

Roundabout plans at River Road in Chemainus moving forward

Land issues still being resolved before details revealed to the public

VIDEO: Buckman Coe, Tonye stun audience with great show at Duncan Showroom

Emotional performances, great music lift Thursday night audience

VIDEO: The ‘most cosmopolitan’ of butterflies could migrate to B.C.

The painted lady butterfly will likely arrive this summer from Southern California

Inspirational Vancouver Island youngster dies after battle with brain cancer

Kaiden Finley ‘was seriously the strongest 11-year-old’

Is it a homicide? B.C. woman dies in hospital, seven months after being shot

Stepfather think Chilliwack case should now be a homicide, but IHIT has not confirmed anything

Indecent caller handed 18-month conditional sentence

Vancouver Island man pleaded guilty to making indecent phone and video calls to women across B.C.

Sources say Trudeau rejected Wilson-Raybould’s conservative pick for high court

Wilson-Raybould said Monday “there was no conflict between the PM and myself”

First Nations public art piece stolen in Nanaimo

Spindle Whorl went missing over the weekend, according to Nanaimo RCMP

Father-son duo at B.C. Children’s Hospital helps new dads fight depression

The pair teamed up to introduce the only known research-based mindfulness workshop for new dads

Mexican restaurant in B.C. told to take down Mexican flag

General manager of Primo’s Mexican Grill in White Rock: ‘I’ve never heard of anything like this’

B.C. NDP moves to provide tax credits, tax cut for LNG Canada

Provincial sales tax break of $596 million repayable after construction

Most Read