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Hans ‘The Wood Guy” Griess kept busy in 2005

From the Free Press Archives

5 YEARS AGO (2015) A local group laid the groundwork to welcome a family of Syrian refugees to 100 Mile House by holding two community meetings. Due to the Syrian Civil War, millions had been displaced from their homes and Justin Trudeau’s Liberal government pledged to settle 25,000 of them in Canada, with 2,500 expected to arrive in B.C. Kimberly Vance-Lundsbye, with Cariboo Chilcotin Partners of Literacy, helped to organize the community meetings with Rob Diether, of the Friendship Centre, and Reverends Kris and Keith Dibyns, of St. Timothy’s of Anglican Church. The meetings were to encourage smaller groups to figure out how to best support a refugee family in the community.

10 YEARS AGO (2010) Limited eyesight didn’t stop members of the Canadian Council of the Blind 100 Mile House and District Chapter White Cane Club from curling. The 100 Mile Curling Club instructed the players on how to curl blind and with the assistance of various aids. Players were enjoying the sport so much they formed 100 Mile House’s first blind curling team to take part in the West Coast Blind Curling Association Provincial Playdowns Bonspiel. Beyond that, curling had given White Cane Club members a new way to socialize and get out and be active like everyone else.

15 YEARS AGO (2005) With the price of heating fuel oil, natural gas and electricity on the rise, many in the Cariboo were either forced or chose to heat their homes with wood. So many were doing so, in fact, that Hans ‘The Wood Guy” Griess was being kept busy seven days a week, eight hours a day cutting 2 1/2 cords of firewood each day with his hydraulic splitter. At 60 years old, Griess said he wasn’t afraid of a hard day’s work even if his operation was, usually, a one-man affair. Having done this for 14 years, Griess said he kept cutting firewood due to the fact it got him outdoors and that many of his older clientele relied on him to heat their homes.

20 YEARS AGO (2000) The Liberal government under Jean Chrétien secured a third term in Ottawa while losing seats in the West. Local politicians like Cariboo Chilcotin MP Phillip Mayfield and 100 Mile House Mayor Donna Barnett expressed their disappointment at the outcome and concerns that the east/west divide would only grow as a result. Cariboo South MLA David Zirnhelt said the loss of Liberals in the area was telling and that it was indicative of western alienation. He expressed concerns that the Canadian Alliance Party, which held onto its position as the official opposition, might overplay their hand and deepen the divide rather than provide the west with a voice in Ottawa.

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