Cormorant Marine Water Taxi
History - Bowen Island Water Taxi
Cormorant Marine started in 1978 with the purchase of the Cabrini, a fibreglass crew boat built in 1965. (picture) In 1981 the 18 passenger vessel Kildonan Hustler was purchased from Vancouver Island. Renamed Bowen Arrow this boat was powered by two 330hp 454 cu. in. gas engines. It passed everything in the Sound (except the fuel dock!)
In 1986 with EXPO 86 in mind we purchased a 38 passenger vessel from B.C. Forest Products Ltd. Originally named the Alvin Queen, the boat became surplus to their needs with a downturn in the forest industry. We renamed the boat Apodaca, which was the original Spanish name for Bowen Island.
In 1987 after some tough times we reluctantly had to sell the Cabrini, which went back to her home waters in the Queen Charlottes. The Bowen Arrow went to the Yukon for tours on Bennett Lake.
In 1992 increasing business made possible the ordering of a new 12 passenger vessel from Daigle Welding in Campbell River. The Cormorant 1 was a welcome addition.
In 2001 the 40 passenger vessel Kinbasket Queen was put into service. Although built in
1981 for use on the coast it never felt the saltchuck for 20 years. It was brought down by trailer from Kinbasket Lake (formed by the Mica Creek Dam).
Our first boat, the Caprini
In medical emergencies the water taxi helps the community.
It is with heavy hearts that we express our condolences to the Biddlecombe/Laudrum family upon the passing of Brian Biddlecombe this past week. As Fire Chief, Brian served the Bowen Island community for over 11 years. He was a leader and a friend in the Bowen Island Fire Rescue community. He spearheaded the building of Fire Hall No. 2 on Adams Road to improve access to the west side of the island and provide additional storage space and training area. He procured Engine 30, which remains the BIFR’s main truck apparatus. Brian was a long serving member of the Fire Hall Facilities Steering Committee, and was a champion of the new Fire Hall that is currently under construction on Miller Road. He would have been so happy to see his many years of work come to fruition when it opens its doors to the community for the first time, and he will be in our thoughts and hearts when it does.
Brian contributed so much to Bowen Island, both in his role as Fire Chief and as owner of Cormorant Marine, which provides an important service with its water taxi and ambulance transport. We are saddened to have lost such a pillar of the community, but we know that his legacy will live on. Rest in peace, Brian, and thank you for everything.