Victor Chan and Myzylyn Lee

March 2023

Myzylyn Lee and Victor Chan met when they were 14 and 15 years old at the same high school in the Philippines. They lost touch until university when they had a chance encounter on a train.

“We didn’t go to the same school, but it was in the same direction,” says Myzylyn. “Victor would take the train to school.”

“The train doors opened and there she was,” laughs Victor.

“I was on the train because I had been buying school supplies, which always makes me really happy,” says Myzylyn.

“She was oblivious,” adds Victor. “The door opened and there she was, just looking down at all the stuff she bought.”

“That’s how we ended up reconnecting,” says Myzylyn.

From there, the couple hung out as friends for a couple years before they started dating. Victor would offer rides to Myzylyn every now and then when she would make the trip home from where she stayed closer to her school.

In 2015, Victor moved to Canada with Myzylyn following 2016. The couple stayed in Markham, Ontario, while Myzylyn worked on getting licensed to be a pharmacist. She achieved this in 2018 and landed a full-time job as a pharmacist in Thunder Bay. Victor is a Sales Manager at Superior Hyundai.

Trains seem to carry a symbolic significance within their love story, as Victor tells me he also proposed on a train while they were still in Southern Ontario.

“It was on her birthday, and I told her we were going to take a trip to Kingston.”

He even enlisted the help of a stranger on the train who was sitting across from them to take photos of the proposal.

“Myzylyn was fast asleep, and I typed out a message explaining what I was going to do on my phone and handed it to the woman across from us,” explains Victor. “I’m surprised she was able to keep it quiet as she seemed a lot more excited than I was.”

The proposal was evidently a success, and the two were married in Woodbridge, Ontario.

“We expected to leave Thunder Bay by 2020, but after staying for a year, we realized we actually really like it here,” Myzylyn tells me. “We then decided to buy a house.”

What do they love about living in Thunder Bay?

“There is a lot of room for growth here. It didn’t take long for us to grow roots and make friends,” says Victor. “We realized that we could really build something here.”

“For me, I found when I worked in the pharmacy in Markham, the relationships would be very transactional. Here, I am actually able to develop a relationship with the patients. People
are more willing to stop and chat,” says Myzylyn.

“She sees the relationship with patients grow,” adds Victor, “instead of it just being another number on a piece of paper that you serve.”

“People appreciate the little things,” says Myzylyn.

“As for me, being in sales, I enjoy it,” says Victor. “You see people from all walks of life, but you’re usually able to find something you have in common. People here love to hunt and fish, and we do that in the Philippines too but we do it quite differently. It leads to good conversations.”

They have also added a Corgi to their family since settling in the city.

Both Victor and Myzylyn have unique hobbies and passions that they have been able to pursue and nurture in Thunder Bay. Myzylyn makes beautiful pottery and if you visit The Hive (formerly DIY Studio), the paint your own pottery cafe, you can select some of her pieces to paint and decorate.

Victor has found a community playing airsoft at Paintball Mountain on Fort William First Nation. Airsoft is a recreational sport similar to paintball but played with smaller plastic pellets.

Neither Victor nor Myzylyn expected to find a home in Thunder Bay, but they have now embraced it as a place where they can continue to grow and pursue their passions both in work and in life.

Cassandra Blair has a Masters of Arts in English Literature and is a regular contributor to Bayview.

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