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Williams Lake’s Ivan Bonnell still healing after serious motorcycle crash last fall

The longtime city councillor’s leg was rebuilt, he is doing physiotherapy and can walk with crutches
Former long-time city councillor Ivan Bonnell suffered serious damage to his left leg in a motorcycle crash Oct. 3, 2022. Here he is on Sunday, June 18 grocery shopping. (Monica Lamb-Yorski photo - Williams Lake Tribune)

Eight months after sustaining serious injuries in a motorcycle crash former Williams Lake city councillor Ivan Bonnell said he is slowly on the mend.

“I can walk, but I need a walker to move around my house and yard,” he said Sunday, June 18, while grocery shopping with his daughter.

“That will be a couple more months. Right now I use a wheelchair when I am grocery shopping so I can have my hands free.”

Pulling up his pant leg to reveal the work done to rebuild his left thigh and lower leg, he said he attends physiotherapy sessions regularly with Liz Durfeld, who first helped him out when he got released from the hospital on Jan. 6, 2023.

For two months Durfeld visited him at home to help him get started and now he goes to her office.

Lately he’s been going down to the legion to play poker, he added.

“I can generally average about four or five hours and then I need to sit down and rest my leg.”

When asked, Bonnell confirmed he pays a “little bit” of attention to city politics, but his main focus is on healing his body.

“Now I am working with ICBC to address quality of life impacts. I cannot do 80 per cent of the things I used to do. I am not mobile, but I am going to start driving next month.”

He said he misses seeing his motorcycle in his driveway at home.

The public can expect to see Bonnell watching the Stampede Parade this year but he does not think he will attend the Stampede because it will be too busy with too many people.

“I am keeping a low profile, keeping things easy so it isn’t overwhelming.”

Bonnell was travelling back from Williams Lake First Nation’s Sugar Cane community into town on Monday, Oct 3, after representing the city at an event.

At about 2:49 p.m. he was struck by a southbound F150 pickup that turned left at the intersection of Highway 97 and Broadway Avenue near Speedy Petey’s Quick Lube.

He spent 100 days in Kelowna General Hospital and then was shipped to Cariboo Memorial Hospital on New Year’s Eve.

At the time of the crash, Bonnell was seeking re-election on city council.

First elected in 1988, he also was mayor from 1999 to 2002.

READ MORE: Williams Lake city councillor seriously injured in motorcycle crash

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Monica Lamb-Yorski

About the Author: Monica Lamb-Yorski

A B.C. gal, I was born in Alert Bay, raised in Nelson, graduated from the University of Winnipeg, and wrote my first-ever article for the Prince Rupert Daily News.
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