Scientist, environmentalist and broadcaster David Suzuki is pictured in a Toronto hotel room, on Monday November 11 , 2016. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chris Young

Walk of Fame bash celebrates David Suzuki, Donovan Bailey, Anna Paquin

Suzuki says he’ll be thinking of his late parents as he accepts the honour

Canada’s Walk of Fame adds environmentalist David Suzuki, sprinter Donovan Bailey, and actress Anna Paquin to its ranks tonight with a splashy gala.

The annual bash will also posthumously induct civil-rights pioneer Viola Desmond, business leader Ted Rogers, and country crooner Stompin’ Tom Connors.

Suzuki says he’ll be thinking of his late parents as he accepts the honour, which recognizes his efforts to champion the environment while making science accessible to average Canadians.

The 81-year-old says the issues facing the planet are as urgent as ever, and he urges Canadians to embrace sustainable living.

This year’s gala is expected to be broadcast next year, but a spokesman says no date has yet been set.

Global will air a one-hour retrospective special Dec. 3, hosted by “Will & Grace” star Eric McCormack.

“I wish my mom and dad were here. They were Canadian born-and-raised all their lives and yet when (the Second World War) came they lost all rights of citizenship and were shipped out of Vancouver and kept in camps for three years,” says Suzuki, whose family later moved to Ontario.

“I wish they were alive to see what Canada has become in that time.”

Suzuki is an outspoken activist for numerous causes including his Vancouver-based research and advocacy group, the David Suzuki Foundation. But the longtime host of CBC-TV’s “The Nature of Things” says he’s proudest of making science appealing and accessible to average people.

“I tried to make it as popular as possible,” he says.

“My father was my biggest fan but also my biggest critic and he watched all the stuff I did and he would call me and say, ‘Look, I’m your father, I love you, but I have to tell you I didn’t understand that at all and if I can’t understand it, how do you expect Joe Blow to understand? You’ve got to do better.’ I always think of my father when I’m looking at that camera.”

Suzuki says the current state of the environment is “very sad and depressing.”

“For over 40 years, the leading scientists have been telling us we’re heading on a dangerous path, we’ve got to change direction. But now, politics and economics interfere and we’re not paying attention to what was the survival strategy of our species, which was foresight. Now we say, ‘No, no, no, we can’t afford that, it’ll cost too much,’” says Suzuki.

“We don’t have much time and we can’t wait for everybody to buy an electric car and take public transit. We’ve all got to do those things but we also need politicians to make big decisions now.”

This year’s Canada’s Walk of Fame additions bring the number of inductees to 173.

The Canadian Press

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

Gabrielle Clarke is an art therapist in Golden who works in mixed media art. Clarke’s art will be on display downtown at the Go-Lab. (Gabrielle Clarke photo)
Mixed media arts show comes to Go-Lab

Clarke’s art will be on display until Nov. 6

The view from Donald Bridge, looking east on Highway 1, about 28 km north of Golden at 11:50 a.m. Oct. 18. (DriveBC)
UPDATE: Expect delays on highway east of Revelstoke

A vehicle incident occurred near the Quartz Creek bridge

Advance voting is already underway in the 42nd general election in British Columbia. Election day is Oct. 24.(Black Press files photo)
QUIZ: Are you ready for the B.C. election?

Take this short test and see how much you know about elections and voting

Kootenay-Columbia MP Rob Morrison speaks during Question Period in the House of Commons.
MP Morrison responds to federal throne speech, pushes for rapid testing at airports

Kootenay-Columbia parliamentarian criticizes throne speech, wants COIVD-19 testing at borders, airports

A puppy is cared for at the Kelowna BC SPCA. Image: BC SPCA
Puppy recovers from virus after being seized from Princeton farm

The pup was one of the 97 animals seized by the BC SPCA in September

A passer-by walks past a COVID-19 testing clinic in Montreal, Friday, Oct. 16, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Ryan Remiorz
Canada ‘yet to see’ deaths due to recent COVID surge as cases hit 200,000

Much of the increase in case numbers can be attributed to Ontario and Quebec

Police confirm human remains were found in a recycling bin in Vancouver on Oct. 18, 2020. (Black Press Media file photo)
Human remains found in recycling bin floating near Vancouver beach

Police asking nearby residents to see if their recycling bin has gone missing

A file photo of an RCMP dog. (Campbell River RCMP photo)
Lawsuit claims Kelowna man suffered ‘vicious’ attack by RCMP dog, handler

Fernando Verde claims he was resuscitated at the hospital and needed emergency surgery following the attack

B.C. Liberal leader Andrew Wilkinson visits a North Vancouver daycare to announce his party’s election promises for child care, Oct. 9, 2020. (B.C. Liberal Party video)
B.C. parties pitch costly child care programs in pandemic

B.C. Liberals say they’ll deliver on NDP’s $10-a-day promise for lower-income families

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

A B.C. man decided to create a website to help people find family doctors accepting patients. Because Victoria is considered high-demand, clinic openings can’t be posted publicly. (Unsplash)
Vancouver Island man starts website that connects B.C. residents with doctors

Nanaimo man started project to help people find family physicians accepting patients

Voting station at Tzeachten Hall in the riding of Chilliwack-Kent on the first day of advance voting in the provincial election on Oct. 15, 2020. (Paul Henderson/ Chilliwack Progress)
B.C. VOTES 2020: 380,000 British Columbians head to polls in first 4 days of advance voting

Some of highest voter turnout so far has been seen on Vancouver Island and in Shuswap

BC Green Party candidate for Kelowna-Mission Amanda Poon found some of her campaign signs tagged with racist and sexist graffiti. (Amanda Poon)
Sexist, racist graffiti found on Kelowna-Mission Green candidate signs

Amanda Poon’s campaign signs were found defaced on Sunday, Oct. 18

Most Read