The new ferry that crosses Little Narrows between Inverness Co. and Victoria Co. will be named the Grand Chief Ben Sylliboy to honour a steadfast, compassionate leader of the Mi'kmaw Nation.
The Department of Public Works held a contest involving the We’koqma’q Mi’kmaw School in Whycocomagh and the Rankin School of the Narrows in Iona to name the new ferry.
Public Works Minister Kim Masland says the successful submission came from Grade 8 student August Francis at We’koqma’q Mi’kmaw School.
“A special thanks to the teachers, staff and students at both schools for participating in the ferry-naming contest.
We had some great suggestions, however, Grand Chief Ben Sylliboy stood out.
He was well respected and committed to serving his community and the Mi’kmaw people.
A residential school survivor, Grand Chief Sylliboy promoted Mi’kmaw language, culture and spirituality and played an important role in advancing reconciliation.
Above all else, he was a wise, humble and caring leader who treated everyone with kindness and respect.”
Sylliboy of We’koqma’q First Nation died in 2017 at the age of 76.
Marie Sylliboy, wife of Grand Chief Ben Sylliboy says her husband was known to be kind, generous and humble.
Sylliboy says her husband used the ferry a lot over the years.
He used the ferry many times, whether for business to attend meetings or for pleasure to catch ball games or enjoy the scenic route.
May the future crossings of the Grand Chief Ben Sylliboy honour his spirit, reconciliation and community service.
We would like to personally thank August Francis of We’koqma’q Mi’kmaw School for his kind words and submission.
We are extremely grateful, Paqsitpi Wela’liek and a special thanks to Department of Public Works, Wela’liek.
The new Grand Chief Ben Sylliboy ferry will begin crossing later this spring.