Tributes for BC’s top doctor have taken many forms – including a downtown Victoria mural, a horse statue in Nanaimo, and a new pair of John Fluevog shoes.
“She’s our rockstar,” said Pattie Cushing, a Victoria resident who’s admired Dr. Henry since mid-March.
“I love her calmness. I love ‘be kind, be calm, be safe,'” said Cushing, referring to Henry’s phrase for British Columbians during the pandemic.
Cushing is far from alone. Dr. Henry’s leadership against COVID-19 has received seemingly universal praise in B.C., Canada, and in the United States, courtesy of the New York Times. Cushing says she’s watched Dr. Henry take the podium for her press conferences nearly every day, and wanted to say thank you in her own way.
“The one thing I noticed every single day was her necklaces,” said Cushing.
Enter Michael Nichol, an artisan and owner of Victoria’s Bamboo, Beads & Bling.
“I had obviously seen Dr. Henry on television with her amazing jewelry,” said Nichol.
Cushing had purchased jewelry from Nichol in the past and thought his style was a perfect fit for Dr. Henry. Cushing commissioned a custom piece from Nichol. Using large agate stones and pink tourmaline, Nichol drew inspiration from Dr. Henry’s necklace collection which he’s seen several times during press conference appearances.
“They’re interesting. They have a nice feel to them,” said Nichol, describing the effect of pink tourmaline and agate.
“When I put the design together, [it had] a nice feel to them. Not too pink, not too dark, it felt really good to put those colours together.”
“It’s just a gift,” said Cushing.
“It’s not just from me. It’s from everybody. It’s from Vancouver Islanders, British Columbia because we love her.”
The tricky part is delivering the gift to Dr. Bonnie Henry.
“I was hoping that CHEK News could do it for me — you are in the business, in the media and I thought, wouldn’t it be great if you, our local television station, could get it to her,” said Cushing.
Kevin Charach, CHEK’S sports and The Upside reporter and anchor is currently in possession of Cushing’s gift Henry.
Henry was unavailable with short notice but staff say a meeting is in the works.