This Thursday marks the 12th anniversary of one of the most notorious unsolved murders in Kamloops history — the seemingly random slaying of Henry Vandenberghe.
On Nov. 29, 2006, the 61-year-old was found gravely injured just after 7 a.m. on a snow-covered sidewalk in the 400-block of MacKenzie Avenue, not far from his home on the North Shore’s Thrupp Street.
He later died in hospital.
Vandenberghe, a longtime Western Canada Theatre employee and a prominent figure in Kamloops’ arts scene, was walking to catch a bus to work when he was attacked.
Police believe he was struck with a weapon, but investigators are not sure what was used.
Mounties have said they think it is likely someone saw something, given the area and the time of day.
RCMP Cpl. Jodi Shelkie said there is no update on the investigation into Vandenberghe’s death.
“The file remains open and we ask that anyone who has information to come forward to Kamloops RCMP or Crime Stoppers,” she told KTW via email.
Theatre was a big part of Vendenberghe’s life. He worked with Theatre B.C. to organize its MainStage and New Play festivals.
He co-ordinated the opening and closing ceremonies for the 1993 Canada Summer Games in Kamloops and was involved in the Workshop Wet Playwrights Theatre in Edmonton.
One legacy that came from Vandenberghe’s death was the creation of a bursary in his name and used to give financial support to youngsters wanting to enrol in one of the courses offered at WCT.
All donations received when any of the program’s production companies present a play have gone into the bursary fund.
They have been used to support about 60 children and youth in the past decade.
Vandenberghe was a Western Canada Theatre employee for 17 years before he was killed.