Percy the Penguin
Sidney School’s Mascot

The students of Sidney School adopted Percy the Penguin as their mascot in the 1980’s. Here is Percy’s story.

Karina Fleck was a Learning Assistance teacher at Sidney School in the mid-1980’s. Her husband was a naval officer stationed in Esquimalt, British Columbia. His ship was the HMS Terra Nova, which was part of Canada’s Pacific Fleet.

Mrs. Fleck’s husband was invited to the school to talk about life on one of our Canadian navy’s ships. He brought his ship’s mascot, Quincy, with him when he addressed the students in an assembly. Quincy was a rather battered stuffed animal who had been on many adventures all over the world with the crew of the Terra Nova. The children were fascinated to learn that Quincy had even been kidnapped once by the crew of a sister ship. Because Quincy was very important to the crew on the Terra Nova, they went to great lengths to get him back.

These stories enthralled the children and they wondered if they could have a mascot at Sidney like the sailors on board the Terra nova. Not only did they want a mascot, they really wanted to have a penguin like Quincy. And so Percy became a very important part of Sidney School’s history. In addition, the children from Sidney also corresponded with the crew of the Terra Nova writing letters and telling the adventures of the two penguins to each other. It was very important to the children and also to the sailors who were so far from home at that time. (Gulf War days)

Ann Say, a long time teacher at Sidney, donated the first Percy the Penguin. Though the connection with the Terra Nova and its’ crew lasted only a short time, Sidney’s students continued to connect Percy with their school. He was taken to inter-school events (track meets, swim meets, basketball games) and became a feature on the school’s t-shirts, stationary and murals.

And that is the story of our mascot, Percy the Penguin.

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Last modified: Friday, 30 November 2012, 3:11 PM