Jack Gray has received an outpouring of support after someone vandalized and poisoned his beehive. Photo courtesy Graham family

Rossland boy finds human kindness sweet as honey after beehive destroyed

Family overwhelmed by kind offerings of strangers all across B.C.

A Rossland mom says she’s been overwhelmed by the kindness of strangers after thieves vandalized their family beehive a week ago.

READ MORE: Rossland teen heartbroken after thieves poison his beehive

Alicia Graham says they received dozens of offers of aid after from across southern B.C. to replace her son Jack’s hive and bees.

“Jack was just beside himself by the outpouring of support,” she says. “Beekeepers are a lovely sort — as are Rosslanders — as are the greater Kootenays, actually, because everyone has reached out far and wide from our Kootenay community.

“But we’ve also heard from beekeepers as far as Vancouver Island, from Creston and points east… so many offers of bees and hives, it’s been nuts.”

The Rossland News brought you the story last week when thieves went onto Graham’s property, found some industrial-strength wasp killer and sprayed it on the 13-year-old’s brand new beehive. His 99-year-old great-grandfather had just set up the hive for Jack two weeks earlier.

The family came home to find thousands of bees dead and dying all over their property.

At first the family despaired the bees and the hive were a write-off, or permanently damaged.

But Graham says one week later, the bees seem to be doing well.

“The bees look right as rain,” she says. “They are good to go. We spoke to the wasp-spray people, and they said it’s a contact spray, so if there’s no die-off now, they are good. It’s out of the hive and there’s nothing there.”

At first the family thought the hive’s honey-making had been compromised. But Graham now says it turns out that honey boxes had not been installed in Jack’s hives, so there’s no problem allowing the bees to start production.

“There’s no honey loss there now because the hive is so new,” she says.

The family is getting a new hive — they accepted the offer before they knew the extent of the damage — but since the insects are fine, that’s all they need for now, says Graham.

“It’s been my pleasure to be able to say to people, ‘we don’t need anything from you, but thank you so much,’” she says. “We’re so stoked the bees survived, like Jack says, they are just the sweetest little beehive. They’re troopers… they are just go, go, go.”

Jack’s great-grandfather is returning to Rossland next week, bringing the special boxes that collect the honey in the hive. Then it’s just a matter of picking up with his hobby — keeping and caring for the surviving bees.

Alicia Graham says it’s been a learning experience for her son.

“What he knows is someone he doesn’t know came into his space and did this horrific thing,” says Graham. “But then a ton more people he doesn’t know came into his life — and his heart — and did something so much more powerful.

“Jack’s realizing he belongs to a community he didn’t know he even had.”

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

Just Posted

Gurkirat Toor has been charged after allegedly pointing a gun at another driver on Oct. 23 in Abbotsford.
Man charged after gun pointed at another driver in Abbotsford

Gurkirat Toor, 21, previously charged with purple-fentanyl bust

The Abbotsford Teachers’ Union stated that local teachers worked without heat on Friday as secondary principals’ and vice-principals’ were at a work-related retreat in Whistler. (Google)
Abbotsford Teachers’ Union says teachers left in the cold on Friday

Abbotsford School District disagrees, saying all buildings were set to 21C on Pro-D Day

The Fraser Valley Health Care Foundation held its inaugural Grand Gala in November 2019 at Harrison Hot Springs Resort. This year’s event will be held online. (Submitted photo)
Fraser Valley Health Care Foundation holds virtual Grand Gala

Second annual event takes place online on Nov. 20, raising funds for local hospitals

Abbotsford author Katrina Wiggins has been shortlisted for the Page Turner Award eBook Award for her young adult novel, Blind the Eyes.
Abbotsford author shortlisted for literary award for young adult novel

Katrina Wiggins’ book Blind the Eyes is about climate crisis and monsters

Abbotsford’s Devon Toews has signed with the Colorado Avalanche for four years. (Avalanche Twitter photo)
Abbotsford’s Devon Toews signs with Colorado Avalanche

Local product inks four-year deal worth $4.1 million annually

Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry arrives for briefing on the COVID-19 situation, B.C. legislature, Oct. 26, 2020 (B.C. government)
B.C. records 217 more COVID-19 cases, mask use urged

Infection spike continues, 21 senior facilities affected

People march during a climate strike in Montreal, Friday, Sept. 27, 2019. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Graham Hughes
Judge rejects 15 youths’ climate change lawsuit against Canadian government

Justice Michael Manson has granted the government’s motion to strike the plaintiffs’ claim

A woman walks through check in at WestJet at Pearson International airport during the COVID-19 pandemic in Toronto on Wednesday, Oct. 14, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette
Strong support for pre-flight COVID testing ahead of upcoming WestJet trial: YVR

Airport is partnering with UBC, which is helping choose the method of pre-flight testing

It’s been eight years since Gordon Spencer (pictured), and cousin, ‘Lil’ Bruce Mayo, were gunned down in a home in Langley, and Spencer’s widow is hoping someone who knows something will step up (file)
Eight years on and still no answers in Langley double murder

Wife of victim makes public appeal for people with information to come forward

Langley resident Shaun Nugent, who died in 2019 shortly after he saved a swimmer from drowning, has been awarded a posthumous medal for bravery by the Royal Canadian Humane Association (Courtesy Nugent family)
Langley man who died after saving swimmer receives posthumous medal for bravery

Shaun Nugent rescued woman from Hayward Lake near Mission in July of 2019

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

Washington State Department of Agriculture workers, wearing protective suits and working vacuumed a nest of Asian giant hornets from a tree Saturday, Oct. 24, 2020, in Blaine, Wash. Scientists in Washington state discovered the first nest earlier in the week of so-called murder hornets in the United States and worked to wipe it out Saturday morning to protect native honeybees. (AP Photo/Elaine Thompson)
Nest of ‘murder hornets’ found near South Surrey

String of traps set up along border to capture Asian giant hornets

Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau provides an update on the COVID pandemic during a press conference in Ottawa on Tuesday, Oct. 27, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
Trudeau says pandemic ‘really sucks,’ and that Christmas gatherings are up in the air

The prime minister encouraged residents to continue to follow the advice of local health authorities

Most Read