Revisit CBC Sudbury's top news stories of 2016

This is it. The ten most popular CBC Sudbury stories of 2016, as chosen by CBC audience.

Reread some of the sad, serious and strange stories that were most popular with CBC readers

We've complied the most popular stories published on our website in 2016. (Casey Stranges CBC)

For your holiday reading pleasure, we've compiled a list of the ten most popular CBC Sudbury stories of 2016, as chosen by you, our audience. Enjoy!

#10. Robert Wood, discredited engineer to inspect Elliot Lake mall before collapse, pleads 'not guilty' at trial

The trial for the deadly Elliot Lake Mall collapse in 2012 got under way, and the only person criminally charged pleaded "not guilty."

Discredited engineer Robert Wood is facing two counts of criminal negligence causing death and one count of criminal negligence causing bodily harm.

Engineer Robert Wood appears at the inquiry into the collapsed mall in Elliot Lake, Ont., in a June 7, 2013 photo. Elliot Lake Inquiry commissioner Paul Belanger was particularly critical of Wood, who signed off on the health of the mall just weeks before it collapsed. (Colin Perkel/The Canadian Press)
#9. 'How can people afford this?': James Bay communities struggle to eat healthily

MP Charlie Angus led the charge when CBC reported the average price of groceries in remote communities along the coast was double that of southern Ontario prices.

"What kind of country thinks it's OK not only that children don't have access to clean drinking water, but children don't have access to food on their tables?" Angus said.

#8. 'Oh. My. Gord.' Hip recharge on James Bay fishing trip

After announcing that frontman Gord Downie was diagnosed with brain cancer, the Tragically Hip embarked on a hectic summer tour, culminating in an emotional final concert in Kingston. To escape the frenzy, the band took a trip on the James Bay coast, where Downie was photographed by an excited fan while passing through an airport.

Tragically Hip frontman Gord Downie takes time to pose with some fans in Northern Ontario after the completion of the "Man Machine Poem tour." (Twitter @MsCheechoo)
#7. Jesus statue gets shocking replacement head

After seeing a statue of Jesus stand outside a Sudbury parish headless for awhile, a local artist created a terra cotta replacement, which drew national and international attention.

(Marina von Stackelberg/CBC)
#6.  Timmins couple, Sue Drummond and Steve Eley, die while on vacation in Mexico

In a tragic story, the Timmins couple — a guidance counsellor and retired teacher — drowned in the sea outside of a Tulum, Mexico resort.

Mexican media report says they drowned outside resort in Tulum, Mexico

A Mexican news report says Susan Draummond and Stere Eley, both from Canada, entered the sea outside the hotel where they were staying. They quote officials saying "it appears the woman suffered a cramp while swimming and began to experience trouble in the water. When her partner came to offer assistance, he was overcome by the strong waves. Both died of drowning." (TomasIlheu/Google)
#5. A dinner for bears

Sudbury had its share of bear encounters this year. Despite the MInistry of Natural Resources' assurances that bears are attracted mostly by garbage and repelled by loud noises, the video —  shot from a New Sudbury yard — says it all.

#4. Kashechewan children's skin lesions not caused by water: health minister

In March CBC reported  a horrific story about children in Kaschewewan covered in sores. Some suggested, or feared, the water conditions in the remote first nation were the cause of the lesions.

Three children were removed from the First Nation near James Bay, including a five-month-old recovering from open-heart surgery, to get medical help.

The picture of this baby on Timmins-James Bay MP Charlie Angus's Twitter feed reinforce the message that the Nishnawbe Aski Nation tried to send to Ottawa in declaring a public health crisis last month. "The chronic failure of the health care system for First Nations in NAN territory has left our communities in a state of crisis," said Alvin Fiddler at the time, during a news conference in Toronto. "Children are dying and lives are at risk. The fact that many First Nations still lack access to even the most basic health services is nothing short of a national tragedy." (Charlie Angus/Twitter)
#3. Laurentian University professor removed for asking students to agree to profane language

Michael Persinger, a controversial psychology professor at Laurentian University, was removed from classes after compelling students to sign a waiver, essentially warning them that foul language would be heard in his class. The story provoked a lot of discussion about free speech in the classroom, as well as a student's right to be sheltered from nasty words.

Known worldwide for his research on the human brain, Persinger also won the TVO “Best Lecturer Award” in 2007. (Marina von Stackelberg/CBC)
#2. Attawapiskat declares state of emergency over spate of suicide attempts

Chief Bruce Shisheesh and council for the Attawapiskat First Nation on remote James Bay declared a state of emergency in April, saying they're overwhelmed by the number of attempted suicides in the community. On one Saturday night alone, 11 people attempted to take their own lives. 

#1. Sudbury man punches black bear in face

61-year-old Rick Nelson slugged his way to international fame when he went toe-to-toe with a 300-pound black bear while on a walk in the woods near Lake Panache.

And Nelson gave us what was probably the most famous quote in the Sudbury newsroom this year:

"I knew it would swing first with its left but it would really come with its right, because most bears are right-handed," Nelson said.