With the support of friends, Bear Henry walks carefully through Beacon Hill Park, still weak after surviving 74 days lost on Vancouver Island.
Now Bear’s able to explain what went so terribly wrong on November 27th, while driving to the Fairy Creek campsite on Caycuse Road.
“It was raining so hard, literally just blew past Caycuse. Don’t think I even registered in my mind. I just kept going and going, and I was like, I think I’ve gone too far.”
But once Bear realized they were lost, it sunk in the situation was dire.
The remote logging road is too narrow to back up.
Then Bear’s van got stuck, and would not start.
“I remember getting back into the van and it wouldn’t start I was just like, Dear God, please just start and it wouldn’t start. I was like I got like a needs to start as a creator please just let this man start.”
Bear survived on the food in the van, cans of chickpeas, tomatoes, rice and even cat food.
A back injury meant walking out wasn’t an option, so Bear stayed put.
“I was like I can’t walk for more than ten minutes. I don’t know where I am. I was always taught to stay where I’m lost.”
Days turned into weeks and weeks into months.
Eventually, Bear realized that getting out was the only option.
After 15 hours of walking, a truck engine sounded in the distance.
“And then like I ran I ran so fast, so hard and pleaded, dear God. Give me a ride out of here.”
The truck belonged to two forestry workers who happened to be leaving work a few minutes early.
While a lucky turn helped with the rescue, Bear now is without a home.
Friend Nakita Sekhon said they are now helping as much as they can to support Bear.
“Bear Henry is very passionate about advocating for homelessness, and poverty, elevating people. So somehow if we can find somewhere for Bear to live, that is reasonable rent, I don’t know if that’s possible.”
Despite the hardship, Bear still maintains a sense of humour when asked about eating chickpeas again.
“I’ll never love to see a can of chickpeas ever again.”