It's the highest honour in the province, but Vancouver-born superstar Ryan Reynolds says receiving the Order of British Columbia is "the honour of a lifetime."
The actor was in Vancouver for a whirlwind one-day visit to attend a private investiture ceremony held in the city Wednesday (Nov. 15) honoring Reynolds with the OBC.
"While they are not officially part of the Marvel Universe, these 14 remarkable individuals are superheroes. They have contributed in unique and profound ways to our province, our nation and beyond, through leadership, selflessness and generosity," said Premier David Eby in a statement in August when this year's OBC recipients were revealed.
While Reynolds' private OBC ceremony was no doubt filled with the usual pomp and circumstance, the actor's day-after social media musings were a mix of sentimental, grateful, and - unsurprisingly - humorous.
"Receiving the Order of British Columbia is the honour of a lifetime. I could have been born anywhere but I had the dumb and incredible luck to be made in Vancouver," writes Reynolds.
Reynolds goes on to offer some very local shout-outs to places tied to him, including his favourite Vancouver restaurant, Minerva's, and the grocery store where he used to work.
'Being home for 24 hours made my life 10,000 hours better'
"Contrary to my earlier belief, the award is NOT a political appointment," jokes Reynolds. "It’s merely symbolic and holds no real power."
"To that end, I may have made some promises to several folks working at Minerva’s restaurant in Kerrisdale - as well as Tyler who works in the produce section at Safeway on 4th and Vine. Grouse Mountain will never be a giant slip ‘n slide. Mountains don’t work that way. I shouldn’t have mentioned it much less commissioned detailed CAD drawings. Nor can I make the Vancouver Art Gallery my personal residence. That’s another overreach. Apologies to the gallery staff for any misunderstanding this morning. It isn’t 'happy hour somewhere.' You have a job to do and I was out of line. ❤️🇨🇦❤️"
Reynolds also thanks Janet Austin, Lieutenant Governor of British Columbia, and Premier David Eby, as well as his brothers and his mother, Tammy, adding: "we’re always there for each other. No matter what. Love you."
In a heartfelt postscript, the newest member of the OBC wraps up with some serious praise for Vancouver: "Being home for 24 hours made my life 10,000 hours better. 🇨🇦🇨🇦"
A larger ceremony will be held in Victoria Thursday evening to honour the majority of the other 2023 OBC recipients (as well as two from 2022).
The province's Intergovernmental Relations Secretariat says a last-minute scheduling conflict means Reynolds could not attend the group event.
Recipients this year include Dr. Penny Ballem, who led B.C.'s COVID-19 vaccination program; nurses Evanna Brennan and Susan Giles, who have worked in the Downtown Eastside for decades; and Chief Harold Leighton, who has served as the chief councillor of the Metlakatla First Nation for more than 35 years.
With files from Brendan Kergin and the Canadian Press