Steveston fishermen who died at sea remembered

Richmondites are invited to an annual ceremony at Garry Point Park honouring Steveston’s fishermen who lost their lives in their line of work.

This year’s Fishermen’s Memorial Service is Sunday, April 28 at noon in Garry Point Park—at the memorial sculpture shaped like a fishing needle inscribed with the names of men from Steveston who died at sea or while at work.

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“Fishing is what built Steveston and Richmond, and it was one of our mainstay industries here,” said Kelvin Higo, one of the event organizers. “It’s our way of remembering those who worked so diligently and lost their lives pursuing this profession.”

Higo’s own father was a fisherman before the family was forced to move from the coast because of anti-Japanese policies during World War II. But Higo’s family made their way back in 1949, when Higo’s father purchased another boat and resumed fishing until he retired.

At the Steveston ceremony, families lay wreaths to remember their loved ones and there are speeches before a tea reception at the Gulf of Georgia Cannery.

“It’s a really touching service, especially for those families,” Higo said.

The local memorial coincides with Canada’s national Worker’s Mourning Day, an act introduced in 1991 to remember all workers killed or injured on the job.

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