Community reunites Vernon 5-year-old with missing rocket

Two weeks after a rocket launch went sideways, Henry got his Christmas present back

Harold and Conrad, brothers and owners of Roko Service Ltd., pose with 5-year-old Henry after giving him back his lost rocket. (Tamra Kruize)

A young Vernon boy has been reunited with his toy after a two-week long mission that would have been impossible without the help and co-operation of the community.

“I honestly didn’t think we were going to see it again,” Vernon resident Tamra Kruize said about her five-year-old son’s toy rocket.

The family decided to launch Henry’s Christmas present on the evening of Aug. 1. Kruize said the conditions were optimal, as there was little to no wind—or so it seemed.

But after takeoff, the family wasn’t able to see where it landed.

“We waited so long to build it and shoot it off,” Kruize said. “I had to try to get it back.”

She and Henry spent the next few days knocking on doors and asking neighbours if they have seen the missing rocket.

“Everyone was really gracious, so many people were coming out to look in their yards and trees,” she said, but to no avail.

READ MORE: Vernon cancer survivor collects guitar strings from bands, sells them for charity

READ MORE: Vernon mountain biking advocacy group wins provincial volunteer award

The family decided to hunt down the lost rocket the old fashioned way. They made a poster.

“Someone had taken a picture of it and posted it on the Rant and Rave Facebook page,” Kruize said. “It was shared 23 times!”

Suddenly, Kruize received a text message from an unknown number. She had a lead.

Henry loved this. He loves to play detectives and spies, his mother said. To be able to put those skills to use in the real world was thrilling for the five year old. He was following the clues and chasing leads to find his not-so-inexpensive toy rocket.

While door-knocking, Kruize said they met a “lovely elderly lady.”

“She was like, ‘I have no idea what you’re talking about.’”

But the woman’s neighbour knew exactly what they were talking about.

“I saw it,” a man told Kruize, noting it landed on the elderly woman’s roof. “I took a picture.”

Kruize and Henry returned to the home in question with the photograph in hand, but the woman was still puzzled by the mystery of the lost rocket.

They exchanged information anyway, just in case the rocket was found on the woman’s property.

And on Thursday, exactly two weeks later, Kruize got a call saying it had been found.

The call came from the elderly woman’s son. He had found the rocket in the backyard and brought it to his place of work at Roko Service Ltd.

“Two weeks later, we have it,” Kruize said, sounding surprised. “I honestly didn’t think we’d see it again.”

She said the community spirit in Vernon is to thank for the reunion.

“There are people out here that are just walking by trying to help,” Kruize said. “We moved to Vernon three years ago from Surrey and it’s so big, you just don’t get that. People don’t say hi or anything.”

But in Vernon, a town about 12 times smaller in terms of population, she said she has fallen in love with the community.

As for Henry, “he’s thrilled,” Kruize said. “He wants to launch it again.”

Kruize admits she’s a bit reluctant because while on the hunt for the toy, she learned it was against the law to launch rockets within the city limits.

The Vernon Morning Star has reached out to the City of Vernon for more information regarding the rules surrounding projectiles but has yet to get an official comment.

READ MORE: Vernon beauty crowned Miss Royalty International 2020

READ MORE: More downtime announced for Tolko Armstrong, Lumby divisions


@caitleerach
Caitlin.clow@kelownacapnews.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

 

The family made a poster in attempts to find the lost Christmas present and it was quickly posted to the Vernon Rant and Rave community on Facebook. (Facebook)

The rocket was found on a roof near the school the rocket was launched. (Submitted)

Just Posted

Quintet jazzes it up in Vernon

Justin Glibbery group brings twist of jazz and pop

Tribute hails Holly at Lumby Winter Dance Party

Feb. 3, 1959 was “The Day the Music Died,” but it’s coming back Feb. 1, 2020

Penticton, Vernon hockey legends to be inducted into BC Hockey Hall of Fame

Vernon’s Eric Brewer and a record-breaking Penticton Vees team will join the HOF July 24

Vernon parent sounds alarm over ketamine and pill parties

RCMP have been notified and are investigating

Man missing from Vernon hotel

Jay Rosenberger, 38, was last seen Friday

VIDEO: Canada’s first presumptive case of coronavirus officially confirmed

Both patient and wife arrived on a China Southern Airlines flight after having been to Wuhan

First-place Canucks beat Blues 3-1 for ninth straight home win

Miller nets pair as Vancouver defeats Cup champs

Swapping grape varieties can help winemakers adapt to climate change: UBC study

Report says 56% of wine-grape-growing regions would be lost if global climate warms by 2 C

Alberta premier wants feds to approve Teck mine for benefit of First Nations

Kenney: ‘Surely [reconciliation] means saying yes to economic development for First Nations people’

Trans-Canada closed east of Golden due to avalanche hazard

The highway is estimated to reopen around 7 p.m.

Penticton Indian Band stands in solidarity with the Wet’suwet’en

“We’ve lived in this area for 10,000 years, and our knowledge is being disregarded…” - Chad Eneas.

UPDATE: Vernon’s Caetani Centre travelogue sold out

Executive Director Susan Brandoli will share photos of Caetani family’s place of origin

Former Hells Angels associate in Kelowna court on gun, drug charges

Former Angels associate Dale Habib appears in Kelowna court

NDP suggests easing secondary housing rules for B.C. farmland

Lana Popham proposes guest homes not just for relatives

Most Read