Eliana Koubi lost her get well balloons on Aug. 23, 2020, but they are being returned by a woman from Alberta after flying almost 1,200 km in two days. (Special to The News)

Girl’s lost balloons from Pitt Meadows found in northern Alberta

Get well bouquet flew almost 1,200 km in two days, and are coming back

A Pitt Meadows nine-year-old who lost her balloon bouquet got it back from northern Alberta.

Eliana Koubi broke her right arm at summer camp, on just the second day, and got it casted.

She brightened up when her mother Alisha’s boss sent a bouquet of get well balloons, complete with chocolate-dipped strawberries.

“It was quite the treat for Iliana,” said Alisha. “She felt pretty special and important.”

But the following Sunday, Aug. 23, when they were having a family dinner with grandma, the little girl brought her balloons out onto the deck. By nightfall, mom realized they had disappeared.

“Nobody saw them leave,” said Alisha. “I felt a little sick,” she added, as she thought both about how disappointed her daughter would be, and fretting about potential environmental problems balloons cause in nature.

“Eliana was really upset about it.”

Then two days later on Tuesday, when Alisha was doing a zoom conference, she got a call from Alberta. It was so surprising she had to listen to it more than once.

The balloons had been recovered in a small town north of Edmonton. Doreen Poirier was calling, because they had been found in her brother’s field near Fahler, a town of about population 1,000 near Grand Prairie. The delivery tag for the Koubi family was still on the balloons, so the finder was able to call.

According to Google Maps, they had travelled a distance of 1,181 km from Pitt Meadows.

“From sometime Sunday to Tuesday those balloons made this incredible journey across two provinces,” Alisha said.

They would have had to fly over the Rocky Mountains, which can reach almost 4,000 metres above sea level in B.C.

READ ALSO: Pitt Meadows piano prodigy memorizes Pi

She tried to make Eliana understand, and the best was that it would take an all-day car ride to follow the same path her balloons had gone.

“When you’re nine you don’t comprehend the geography. I explained to her it would take us 13 hours to driver there without stopping. She said ‘wow.’

“And she’s a sentimental kid, and said it was so nice of Doreen to call.”

Not only that, the affable Albertan also mailed the balloons back to be reunited with their owner.

They arrived on Tuesday, deflated and krinkly, and one showing some grey.

“Maybe they picked up some soot from a forest fire,” said Alisha.

But they were accompanied by a get well card and a box of chocolates, and it was all pretty exciting for Eliana, said her mom.

They plan to sit down and write a left-handed letter of thanks.

“This is a story our whole family will cherish forever.”


 


ncorbett@mapleridgenews.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Pitt Meadows

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

 

They’re back, a little worse for wear, and deflated. But they’re back all the same. (Special to The News)

Just Posted

Maple Ridge Bears posted “big bear hugs” to everyone who has worked toward better co-existence this year. (Facebook)
Ten fewer bears have been shot in Maple Ridge

Conservation group celebrating success this year

Police tape is shown in Toronto Tuesday, May 2, 2017. (Graeme Roy/The Canadian Press)
CRIME STOPPERS: ‘Most wanted’ for the week of Oct. 18

Crime Stoppers’ weekly list based on information provided by police investigators

A giant pumpkin is rolled onto the scale to be weighed. (Steve and Pascale Shaw/Special to The News)
Pumpkin weighing 197 kilograms takes first place in Maple Ridge contest

Trevor Halliday wins second annual Whonnock Giant Pumpkin contest.

Fraser Health is promoting that everyone get a flu shot, which are now available.
Flu shots more important during pandemic

Symptoms of flu and COVID-19 overlap, and so do precautions

Maple Meadows Station’s new Bike Parkade. TransLink photo
TransLink to remove abandoned or discarded bicycles from Bike Parkades

Rules at Maple Ridge’s Maple Meadows Station ask customers to use facilities for single day use only

FILE – People wait in line at a COVID-19 testing facility in Burnaby, B.C., on Thursday, August 13, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
167 new COVID-19 cases, 1 death recorded as B.C. enters 2nd wave

Three new healthcare outbreaks also announced

This 2020 electron microscope image made available by the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases shows a Novel Coronavirus SARS-CoV-2 particle isolated from a patient, in a laboratory in Fort Detrick, Md. THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP-NIAID/NIH via AP
At least 49 cases of COVID-19 linked to wedding in Calgary: Alberta Health

McMillan says the city of Calgary has recently seen several outbreaks linked to social gatherings

UBC geoscientists discovered the wreckage of a decades-old crash during an expedition on a mountain near Harrison Lake. (Submitted photo)
Wreckage of decades-old plane crash discovered on mountain near Harrison Lake

A team of Sts’ailes Community School students helped discover the twisted metal embedded in a glacier

Officers with the Lower Mainland Emergency Response Team were at a White Rock home Tuesday (Oct. 20) to assist Vancouver Police Department with execution of a search warrant. (Contributed photo)
ERT, VPD response to White Rock home connected to homicide: police

Search underway in the 15800-block of Prospect Crescent

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

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

The official search to locate Jordan Naterer was suspended Saturday Oct. 17. Photo courtesy of VPD.
‘I am not leaving without my son,’ says mother of missing Manning Park hiker

Family and friends continue to search for Jordan Naterer, after official efforts suspended

A bear similar to this black bear is believed responsible for killing a llama in Saanich on Oct. 19. (Black Press Media file photo)
Bear kills llama on Vancouver Island, prompting concerns over livestock

Officers could not track the bear they feel may not fear humans

Bernard Trest and his son Max, 10, are concerned about B.C.’s plan for students in the classroom. He was one of two fathers who filed a court application in August to prevent schools from reopening if stricter COVID-19 protections weren’t in place. That application was dismissed last week. (Contributed photo)
B.C. dad pledges to appeal quashed call for mandatory masks, distancing in schools

Bernard Trest and Gary Shuster challenged health, education ministries’ return-to-school plan

Most Read