‘We Were Here’ Book Launch – the story of Chantry Island Restoration by Michael Sterling


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Mike Sterling, founding member of the Propeller Club/Marine Heritage Society, has created a book that tells the story of the Chantry Island Lighthouse and Keeper’s Cottage restoration from its beginning.

The book is being formally launched tomorrow, November 19th, at the Chantry Centre Christmas Craft Sale in Southampton and tells the history with photos of a feat that some said could not be done.

“There is never a question so regretted as the one that was never asked. Many of my friends are gone and what remains is in our collective memory of them and what they loved to do,” says Sterling. “I have attempted to tell a small part of the story of ‘We Were Here’. It is told in vignettes that help describe the powerful spirit of ‘We Were Here’. Other stories will be remembered, written down and told by others.  Our memories need not die. We know them and cherish them. We have all the tools to save them.

Join the Marine Heritage Society. Acquiring this book helps to keep the memories strong. And oh! Don’t forget to share your memories and smiles with me.”

By way of appreciation, the first copies of the book were presented by Vicki Tomori on behalf of Sterling on Friday, November 18th, to Mayors who have supported the Marine Heritage Society – former Mayors Mark Kraemer (absent) and Mike Smith and current Mayor Luke Charbonneau.

(L) former Mayor Mike Smith, Vicki Tomori and Mayor Luke Charbonneau (absent is former Mayor Mark Kraemer)

Mike Sterling’s Message to Mayors and Staff
Twenty-Five years of Mayoral and Staff support for Marine Heritage

“Our community has been blessed with long standing and powerful support for volunteerism. We, as members of Marine Heritage, have felt the steady hand of a community that has never wavered. We in turn have tried to make your long-standing help, advice and support easier to administer. We have learned. We have tried to exercise single point of contact wherein we could hear you.

We tried to knock on the door when we had something to say. We have listened carefully to your advice. This thereby made your support all the more effective for us and the community at large.

We hope that you, the Mayors, cited in the book We Were Here, will read it. We hope that you will feel our gratitude. We hope you will remember that We Were Here in large part because of you.

Let me go back to the first presentation that I made to Council about our dreams and plans. After I spoke for five minutes, we dimmed the lights and Mike Goodwin sang his song ‘We Were Here’.   We were telling you that we, with your approval, were going to leave something of ourselves for the future.”

The books will be sold at the Chantry Centre Christmas Craft Sale or from Vicki Tomori at chantryisland@bmts.com