CHEK Upside: Saanichton man commissions tree carving in honour of late wife

CHEK Upside: Saanichton man commissions tree carving in honour of late wife
WatchWhen Larry Allan's wife Patricia passed away two years ago the retiree decided to turn her favourite tree into a towering tribute.

In a Saanichton front yard, the finishing touches are being put on a very special project.

“For a long time it was just a big stump and they would say ‘well what are you doing with that stump’ and I said ‘one day you’ll see,” said Larry Allan.

Allan has lived in his neighbourhood since 1974. He and his wife Patricia would often sit on their deck overlooking a large Douglas fir tree in their front yard.

“My wife liked sitting out on the patio watching the birds and squirrels playing in the trees,” said Allan.

When Patricia passed away two years ago, Allan wanted to create a fitting tribute to his late wife of 52 years.

“We were sitting on the balcony and talking about it and he wanted the tree topped,” said Allan’s granddaughter Crystal Parks.

“So originally we had it topped and then one day he was just kind of sitting and staring at the stump and I was like ‘what are you staring at’ and he said ‘I want to make that into a carving of something in memory of granny’,” added Parks.

Granddaughter and grandfather began their hunt for an artist and found him in chainsaw carving master Ryan Cook. Cook’s work has been featured on the HGTV show Carver Kings, with the Vancouver-based artist happy to help with the project.

“I love that stuff you know, to me that’s one of the best things about chainsaw carving is that I’m creating things that mean things to people,” said Cook.

“It’s very special, Patricia was an awesome lady from all the stories and the community here has put up with me for the last six days of big chainsaws,” smiled Cook.

“I can’t thank him enough for what he’s done,” added Allan.

Now Patricia’s tree will stand forever etched in her memory.

“I think she’d appreciate it,” smiled Allan.

READ MORE: CHEK Upside: Brentwood Bay man carries on family pumpkin growing tradition


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