Richard Oland (Vela Veloce) passes away


Super Anarchist
New Scotland
Many of you are probably familiar with Richard, whose death is for the time being considered suspicious

Richard Oland, a member of one of the best-known families in Atlantic Canada, has died under suspicious circumstances, according to police.
Oland was 69 years old.

Saint John police spent much of Thursday near his Canterbury Street office in downtown Saint John, where his body was found about 9:30 a.m.

"It's a real shame," said Don Cullinan, who works in the law office next door to Oland's business, Far End Corporation.

"I saw him just about every day and said 'hello' to him," Cullinan said. "He seemed like a very, very pleasant fellow."

Cullinan told CBC News police were in and out of Oland's second-storey office all day Thursday.

Police removed Oland's body at about 2:30 p.m. and towed his BMW from the parking lot, at the corner of Canterbury and Princess streets. They also searched the area with sniffer dogs.

Richard Oland was a businessman, world-class sailor and a driving force behind the 1985 Canada Games in Saint John. (Canadian Yachting Association)

Staff Sgt. Mike King said the major crime unit and a number of patrol officers were involved.

But he wouldn't comment on how long the body had been there, how Oland died, or whether any weapons were involved.

An autopsy is expected to be performed Friday.

Oland is survived by his wife and three children.

Oland's family has owned Moosehead Brewery since Confederation, but he left that company in the 1980s. His brother Derek now runs the brewery.

Oland became a competitive sailor, who participated in races around the world.

Last year, he won the International Rolex Regatta in St. Thomas.

He was instrumental in helping Saint John get the 1985 Canada Games. He was also involved in finding a new home for the New Brunswick Museum in downtown Saint John.

One of Oland's friends described him as a "great salesperson" for Saint John.

Steve Carson, the chief executive officer of Enterprise Saint John and a family friend, described Oland was a tireless promoter for the city.

"Dick had a really in-depth knowledge of manufacturing, of logistics and transportation and technology. So it didn't matter what type of business someone was involved in," Carson said.

"He was very passionate and very intense and he had a really phenomenal way of connecting with people. So that combination of knowledge of the community and his passion for business was something that was very genuine and he was a great salesperson for the community."
NYYC Race Week at Newport Presented by Rolex: Vela Veloce overall winner

July 26, 2010After four days of racing in a variety of conditions across a mix of around-the-buoys and distance, New York Yacht Club's seventh biennial Race Week at Newport presented by Rolex came to an end onthe 24th of July. Light winds threatened to cancel the last day of racing for the 35 competing boats, but by 2pm Newport's classic southerly sea breeze filled in against a stubborn northerly and offered suitable conditions for racing. All classes raced on a four-leg windward/leeward course, and at the end of the day the Southern Cross 52 Vela Veloce was determined the best performing boat and was named the 2010 Rolex US-IRC National Champion. Its owner and skipper, Richard Oland (St. John, New Brunswick, CAN), was presented with a specially engraved Rolex Yacht-Master at this evening's Rolex Gala and Awards Party held at Harbour Court.

Richard Oland's Vela Voloce won IRC 2 with four firsts and two seconds. Photo Credit Rolex - Daniel Forster

"This is a tremendous thrill for us," said Oland, who won his IRC class in March's International Rolex Regatta. He pointed out that competing against all of the boats in the fleet is exciting. "That's the secret of IRC. The reason it's become so good is because it allows for innovation. If you look at the results, and you look at boats you see how close they are. Like in our class, class 2, we were all within 50 feet."

The overall winner was calculated by comparing all entries based on a formula of average seconds per nautical mile. In determining the overall winner, the NYYC Sailing Office noted that the time separating winner Vela Veloce from the second-place overall was 13/100s of a second.

Winning the class wasn't enough; it was the overall performance that counted. Not much of a consolation to Steve Benjamin (South Norwalk, Conn.) and his team onboard his Tripp 41 Robotic Oncology, which won IRC Class 3 and finished in second place overall.
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Super Anarchist
I had only Richard once, this past winter, in Toronto. I happen to get lucky and we were seated at the same table for the CYA Rolex Awards dinner. Really nice, guy, one of the sort the sport needs alot more of.

What a shame. Terrible loss for the family.



Alta UT
Damn that's sad. He came over and introduced himself to me at BI and he seemed excited about his new build. Was looking forward to racing against him this fall and winter. Shit.


left hook

Super Anarchist
No no no no no no... Richard introduced himself to me at the IRC NA's last July and congratulated us on our podium finish even though I was just the kid on the crew who was there to pick up the trophy. We then talked for a while and I walked away thinking "what a great dude". He was a fantastic guy who knew how to run a great program... who would do such a terrible thing... crap.

True condolences to his family. Fair winds and following seas to Richard...


The Owner

Terrible to hear. Condolences to family and friends.

A good friends little brother has sailed on VV for the past few years, loved sailing with Mr. Oland, couldnt' say enough about him .


Right Coast

Super Anarchist
I had the pleasure of meeting Dick this winter, while delivering VV to Antigua after Pineapple Cup. He was a genuinely good guy, and truly enthusiastic about sailing. The news of his passing is both sad and disturbing.



Super Anarchist
New Scotland
Prominent New Brunswick businessman Richard Oland died in a homicide, the Saint John Police confirmed on Monday.
Oland, 69, was found dead on Thursday near his Canterbury Street office in Saint John.

Bill Reid, the chief of the Saint John Police, said the autopsy results and the investigation have led the police to confirm it was a homicide, but they are still not indicating whether a weapon was involved.

Reid told a Monday afternoon news conference that Oland and the killer knew each other.

However, the police will not say whether there are any suspects.


Sick... just sick! One of the great owners in our sport! Will me missed.

My condolences to the family, close friends and all that have saiied regularly with him over the years.




New member
I was stood on the dock admiring VV after the Caribbean 600 last year. This chap engaged me in conversation and invited me to view his boat and gave me a guided tour. I came away thinking what a boat and such a nice guy.

My sincere condolences to the family



Super Anarchist
Whispers of what happened came out pretty quick on Friday, but obviously everyone can't say much due to ongoing investigation. I just hope the cops wrap it up pretty quick and put this to bed for the families sake. They are good people.




Super Anarchist
Been sending out crew emails for Mac race, and with a Richard on our crew, Dick's email keeps popping up in the autofill in the subject line. Hits kinda hard.

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Big Show

Super Anarchist
T'ic' o' Fog
A terribly sad loss of a Maritimer who clearly loved his sailing. Sincere condolences to his family and friends.

It was great to see him so pleased to win the Gerry Roufs trophy at the CYA awards this past February in Toronto. That was a fun night with a bunch of great sailors. CYA Rolex Awards

Hearing from the people who sailed with him and seeing all the events Vela Veloce sailed it was easy to admire what he was doing.

Not many like him in sailing from Canada let alone the Maritimes. Many toasts of fair winds coming RO's way.

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Super Anarchist
New Scotland
The Saint John Police spent several hours on Thursday at the home of Richard Oland's son executing a search warrant.

CBC News has confirmed the house on Gondola Point Road belongs to Dennis Oland, the son of the prominent New Brunswick businessman who was found dead in his office last week.

Saint John Police would not officially confirm who lives in the house or that it is related to the homicide investigation.

Sgt. Glenn Hayward said officers arrived at the house around 12 p.m. AT on Thursday.

There were at least two forensic vans at the house.