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Surreal Bonnie Henry appreciation music video filmed on Vancouver Island
CENTRAL SAANICH -- A quartet of back-up singers lean into their microphones for a gospel-style version of "All Shook Up," before Bruce has his Elvis Presley jumpsuit ripped in half to reveal a James Bond tuxedo underneath.
To understand why Bruce is filming this scene in his yard, we need to go back to when he first met Darlene (one of the singers) in an emergency room.
“He reached out his hand and shook my hand [and introduced himself] ‘Bruce Campana’,” Darlene recalls. “And I went (sigh).”
He was the doctor. She was the nurse. The patient was drunk.
“And then the guy threw-up,” Bruce adds.
“I was smitten,” Darlene says. “Then we had to clean-up some vomit.”
“Classic romantic moment,” Bruce smiles.
That moment lead to 28 years of marriage, twin sons, and an enduring appreciation for humour in healthcare.
“If you look serious and then make some sort of stupid comment, [your patient] goes from crying to laughing. That to me is the heart and soul of emergency medicine,” Bruce explains. “Sure, there’s blood and guts and trauma, but really its...”
“Humanity,” Darlene finishes his thought.
Which brings us back to that video shoot in their yard.
“Do something crazy,” Bruce in the Bond suit says into the camera. “Like have a dinosaur!”
Cue two people wearing inflatable dinosaur costumes walking in front of him.
The surreal scene is part of a valedictorian address the retired physician made for a UBC business course.
“There’s all these people in this course who are way smarter than I am, so I thought I can make the worst presentation ever made,” Bruce explains. “So, if any of them were worried about getting a low mark, mine would be lower!”
Although he used up the explosions and liquid nitrogen for his class video, Bruce still had the suit, his sons dressed as dinosaurs and their singing girlfriends and his wife holding their pet chickens.
“So, we thought, what better set-up to do an ode to Bonnie Henry,” Bruce says.
They decided to use some humour to honour B.C.’s top doctor.
The song is set to the music of the Beach Boys’ ‘Don’t Worry Baby’, with the chorus changed to ‘We Thank You Bonnie’.
The back-up singers do the ooh’s and ahh’s, while Bruce speaks lyrics like ‘The economy’s in a nosedive but you’re why we’re alive.’
Bruce and Darlene call Henry a hero for our times.
"Bonnie is intelligent, humble," Bruce says. "And she’s saved more lives in the last six months than probably Darlene and I have in our combined 60 years of emergency medicine."
Bruce and Darlene hope their song will take the edge off this pandemic that they know — more than most — can be very painful.
“I found out this morning that my mother is going to the hospital in Montreal,” Bruce says. “She’s been diagnosed with COVID.”
They hope the 86-year-old will be cared for with the same grace Dr. Henry has provided our province, and the same humour they’ve used to help heal their patients.
“It’s okay to have fun and make people smile in hard times,” Bruce adds. “So why not?”