David Forrester (right) has his trumpets returned by the Vernon RCMP. The instruments had been stolen from a vehicle in downtown Vernon Nov. 23.

David Forrester (right) has his trumpets returned by the Vernon RCMP. The instruments had been stolen from a vehicle in downtown Vernon Nov. 23.

Instrument returned

A grateful West Kelowna trumpeter can blow his favourite horns again

  • Dec. 9, 2015 1:00 p.m.

A grateful West Kelowna trumpeter can blow his favourite horns again.

David Forrester, who plays with Vernon-based Okanagan Valley Big Band, had his beloved Bach Stradivarius 37C, b-flat trumpet, silver in colour, with a Yamaha 14 gold-plated mouthpiece, and Getzen Fluegel horn (shorter, fatter trumpet), stolen in their case from his Volkswagen Passat which was parked outside Sir Winston’s Pub Nov. 23 as the band had a meeting inside.

One day after Forrester’s story appeared in The Morning Star, an ironworker reported he had found the case containing the trumpets.

“A man working on a construction project in the 3200 block of 25th Avenue in Vernon noticed the instrument case wedged in a space under the sidewalk,” said Vernon RCMP Const. Jocelyn Noseworthy. “When he pulled the case out, he found both horns inside.”

Both trumpets have great sentimental value to Forrester, who has owned the Stradivarius for more than 25 years.

Forrester said the man who found the trumpets had actually forgot he had them in his possession.

“He had no idea where they came from so he took them to the construction trailer for safekeeping, put the case on a shelf and forgot about them,” said Forrester.

“The man’s younger brother is reading The Morning Star 10 days later, sees the story, thinks nothing of it and goes to work. He goes into the trailer, sees the case for the first time and asks his brother about it. The brother says, ‘Oh ya, I found these last week and forgot about them.’

“The younger brother goes, “Hey, I just read a story about stolen trumpets in The Morning Star. I bet you these are them.”

The brothers phoned police who reunited Forrester with his musical instruments.

“The man who found them is a drummer and understands music,” smiled Forrester, who had called all the pawn shops in Vernon after the theft.

“They were wonderful,” he said. “Talk about support in Vernon…wow. I told each of them that God would restore them to me. I can’t explain how but it will happen, I can assure you.

“The reactions were unanimous. They would be on the lookout. Great people. I called other stores and shops and got the same positive reaction – ‘we’ll keep on the lookout. You will get them back.’ Gotta love that.”

The two trumpets are worth $2,500-$3,000.