Lawrence Burns Honoured at Courtenay Park Dedication Event

October 6, 2022

The City of Courtenay has paid tribute to an outstanding community leader, volunteer, and friend of the City, Lawrence Burns, with the unveiling of a new sign at Lawrence Burns Park at a formal park dedication event on October 4.

Lawrence Burns Park is a 1.57 acre naturalized green space at 480 Hunt Road, one block south of Back Road and Ryan Road.

The event was attended by Lawrence Burns, his family, as well as members of the Courtenay Fire Department, the Courtenay Heritage Committee, the Courtenay Parks and Recreation Advisory Commission, the City, members of Council, and others who have worked directly with Lawrence over the years.

Burns is well known in the community, having served as the Courtenay Volunteer Fire Department’s first full-time Fire Chief from 1969 to 1995.

Courtenay Fire Chief Kurt MacDonald said Burns has been an inspiration for both firefighters and members of the community. “For me personally, Lawrence had an important impact on my career in the fire service,” said MacDonald. “On behalf of all the firefighters that you inspired and for all that you have meant to the fire service, I would like to thank you and congratulate you on receiving this honor. You truly deserve it.”

Burns is also a long-time member of the Courtenay Heritage Commission, including many years as its Chair, and has volunteered his time for community events and initiatives. Craig Rushton, the City of Courtenay’s Director of Recreation, Culture & Community Services, added “we recognize Mr. Burns for his contributions to the history, heritage and public safety of Courtenay. Lawrence represents the impact an individual can have on the lives of many through his enduring service to community.”

A life-long Courtenay resident, Burns has been involved with many projects supporting the physical, social and cultural heritage in the Comox Valley. This includes plaque installations, housing and building inventory, the establishment of a heritage register, signage projects, walking tours, and educational materials.

The City has previously recognized Burns for his contributions to the community through its highest honour, the “Freedom of the City” in 1995. Burns was also recognized by Heritage BC with a Distinguished Service Award in 2020.

Photos by: Kim Stallknecht