Family thrilled with namesake

The Forrests were never expecting to have a field named after them.

Denny and Mary became active in the community once their kids started playing sports and that propelled them on a rewarding journey of volunteering.

New to Ladysmith in 1975, the Forrests found getting out in the community was the best way to meet people.

“You need to get out and get involved in something.”

Those relationships formed through sports are still strong today, said Mary.

“It was a lot of fun years,” she added.

Now, more than a week after the naming ceremony where the artificial all-weather turf field was renamed

Forrest Field, Denny and Mary were still having a hard time wrapping their heads around the idea.

Denny said their Facebook page has been flooded by well-wishers.

“It’s absolutely amazing. It’s forever.”

Denny said they are planning a family gathering at the field soon, including relatives from the mainland, to celebrate the new family field.

It’s a pretty big deal for this family, said Denny, to have their named attached to such a state-of-the-art field.

“They built it right, it’s going to last.”

Mary remembers back in their coaching days, they issued 12 bleach bottles full of sand and told coaches to mark out the fields.

His sports coaching began with baseball back in the early 80s and his resume grew to include coaching the men’s fastball team for more than 20 years.

Denny still takes an active role in a memorial ball tournament to honour their son David, who passed away in 1993. It has been a tradition on the May long weekend for nine- and 10-year-olds. It is held at Dogwood and High Street field.

“It’s a great little tournament,” he said.

Their other son, Paul, was one of the original 49ers.

He was always coaching and Mary always wound up on the executive.

Denny has also enjoyed seeing the kids grow up.

“It’s a great feeling to see where they go and keep track over the years.”

Sports has always been a big part of Denny’s life, who said his favourite is a toss-up between soccer and baseball.

His next mission is to see his new namesake getting used more, that means starting an 35+ team and U21 team.

Mary said she has always been passionate about sports, but coming from Australia, was focussed more on Aussie Rules Football than the game of North American soccer.

“We didn’t know anyone who played soccer.”

That said, Mary loves that soccer is easy to play and affordable for kids with parents in all income brackets.“There’s a piece of grass somewhere.”

It wasn’t all sports for the Forrests. Mary was involved in the hospital auxiliary and Boys and Girls Club and was a member of the Arbutus Spinners and Weavers. Denny served on council for two terms and both were involved in the school system.

Just Posted

(File photo)
Poverty reduction survey identifies 10 poverty themes

Poverty reduction plan will be finalized in July 2021

Nanaimo-Ladysmith MP Paul Manly says he has no intentions of leaving the Green Party. (House of Commons image)
Island Green MPs have “no intention” of leaving the party after ‘heartbreaking’ departure

Manly, May only remaining Green MPs after Jenica Atwin left for the Liberals over internal disputes

New COVID-19 cases on Vancouver Island by local health area for the week of May 30-June 5. (B.C. Centre for Disease Control image)
COVID-19 cases drop again almost everywhere on Vancouver Island

Nanaimo had four new cases last week, down from 22 the week before

Justine Keefer’s Cedar Elementary School Grade 6/7 class put together a student paper, as part of a school project. Pictured here Andrew Gregory, left, Felix Leduc, Addison Armstrong, Lucia Walker and Anise Dick. (Karl Yu/News Bulletin)
Cedar Elementary School students create their own newspaper

Grade 6/7 class publishes Wolf Pack News as part of language arts and social studies

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau participates in a plenary session at the G7 Summit in Carbis Bay, England on Friday June 11, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Canada donating 13M surplus COVID-19 vaccine doses to poor countries

Trudeau says the government will pay for 87 million shots to be distributed to poor countries

Montreal Canadiens goaltender Carey Price (31) is scored on by Vegas Golden Knights defenseman Alec Martinez, not pictured, during the second period in Game 1 of an NHL hockey Stanley Cup semifinal playoff series Monday, June 14, 2021, in Las Vegas. (AP Photo/John Locher)
Habs fall 4-1 to Vegas Golden Knights in Game 1 of NHL semifinal series

Match was Montreal’s first game outside of Canada in 2021

Kelowna-Lake Country MLA Norm Letnick, assistant deputy speaker at the B.C. legislature, presides over committee discussions. The legislature is completing its delayed spring session this week, with most MLAs participating by video conference. (Hansard TV)
B.C.’s daily COVID-19 infections dip below 100 over weekend

Only 68 new cases recorded Monday, four additional deaths

Gabriola Island artist Sheila Norgate is promoting the Digital Innovation Group’s art impact survey. (File photo)
Vancouver Island artists get behind regional arts impact study

Artists urged to use their stature to help put arts and culture super-region on the map

The BC Ferries website went down for a short while Monday morning following a provincial announcement that recreational travel between health authorities can resume Tuesday. (Black Press Media file photo)
BC Ferries’ website crashes in wake of provincial reopening announcement

Website back up now, recreational travel between health regions to resume as of Tuesday

Neighbours fight a small late-night bush fire with garden hoses and shovels in Cinnabar Valley on June 5. They couldn’t get help from local fire services because the fire was located in an area under B.C. Wildfire Services jurisdiction. (Photo courtesy Muriel Wells)
Neighbours on edge of Nanaimo city limits left to put out bush fire themselves

Cinnabar Valley residents tackle fire with hoses and buckets for two and a half hours

Darren Campbell’s truck (pictured) was stolen when he stopped to check on a car in a ditch on Cowichan Bay Road on Monday morning. (Facebook photo)
Vancouver Island Good Samaritan’s truck stolen in nasty trick

‘Try to be a Good Samaritan and my $20,000 truck gets stolen right under my nose’

The Kamloops Indian Residential School is photographed using a drone in Kamloops, B.C., Monday, June, 14, 2021. The remains of 215 children were discovered buried near the former school earlier this month. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
Communities grapple with what to do with former residential and day schools

Some tear them down as a tool to help healing, others repurpose them as tools for moving forward

Creative handmade signs abound at the June 13 Tofino rally for old growth trees. (Nora O’Malley photo)
VIDEO: Tofino stands in solidarity for Fairy Creek Blockades

Over 150 supporters attend rally hosted by Friends of Clayoquot Sound

Most Read