You were a wonderful son, a loving father, the best husband, a caring grandpa and a loyal friend..we will miss you. Love you always..... your wife
Around 1966, our family moved into the house next door to the Elias family, and as there were three sisters in my family and three in the Elias family the same age as us, we instantly paired up and became close friends. Mel was “the older brother” who roamed around with his two best friends (Derek was one) and listened to music in his basement room (off limits to girls!). As a young man, he played football for Jasper Place Composite High School, proudly wore his football jacket everywhere and was very fit and strong. Of course he loved music, particularly the Rolling Stones, Bob Dylan, Joan Baez, Neil Young and the Beatles, and later he developed a taste for classical music. I particularly remember his fondness for Rimsky-Korsakov, Tchaikovsky, Beethoven and Chopin. He also loved reading and although he freely admitted he was not a fast reader, he was a steady one and got through an amazing number and variety of books. He was a terrific reader aloud, and I remember being present evening after evening as he read aloud works by John Fowles, Robertson Davies, Robert Henriques, Wallace Stegner and other authors. Mel enjoyed gardening as well, and for a while was greatly taken with growing roses, even entering some of his own special roses into shows and winning prizes. He also became interested in cooking and at Christmas time would devote a great deal of time and energy to Christmas baking, making different kinds of scandalously calorie-laden cookies. A dedicated birdwatcher, he had an impressive list of sightings, and once in a while, I'd go along on one of his bird-watching trips to Stanley Park or the Reifel Bird Sanctuary. We also combed Vancouver's old, stuffy smelling second-hand bookshops, looking for good finds. Mel got caught up in a number of creative fads way back then, including making bead necklaces (hippy days), dipped flowers, driftwood lampstands, and so on. He loved photography and early on got a Polaroid camera. You could always tell Mel was around when you heard a SNAP! followed by the strange scratchy whirr of a Polaroid photo emerging from his camera. I knew him through to the early 1980s but gradually lost touch after I moved to Japan and later to the UK. However, I was fortunate to be able to see him again in June 2012. He was philosophical and realistic about his illness at the time, and I felt that was a cue for how I should regard it as well. I will always remember him as a man of kindness, tolerance, humour, realism, and dignity.
Hi Mel ... I saw 3 hummingbirds yesterday and thought of u ... I was only lucky enough to meet u once, but I'm sure we would have been close friends had I been geographically closer to u and your lovely wife Christine. I speak to Christine as often as possible, and want u to know she's doing ok. Please keep sending the hummingbirds, cause Christine sees them too ... and it gives her great peace. I know u and Gaby are together, and that's amazing ... she's happy you're there with her ... u are both missed very much by your loved ones on this side ... but we know that you're out of any pain and happy where u are. Keep in touch with us and u know what I mean ... love always ... Kym
I was fortunate to work with Mel and enjoy his friendship for over 12 years. He was a "Steelman", mentor to anyone on the Purchasing side of the business, all around good guy and a true and loyal friend. I miss him very much.
Yesterday I read in the local paper of a sighting of a bird so rare to our part of the world it has never been seen in Canada and only twice before in North America, and it happens to be in the park a block from our house! (A red-flanked bluetail, for those interested.) All I could think of was how excited Mel would have been, and how he would have driven over and we could have had lunch and wandered around the park together looking for the little bird . . . .
It was a sad day for me when I heard the passing of Mel. I worked with him for 19 years and he taught me all I know about the steel industry. He was my mentor and I will truly miss his calm ways and his vast knowledge. It was a pleasure knowing and working with him and my thought and prayers are for Christine and the family.
Mel was one of those truly nice people that that we all hope to meet.
We both liked him from the minute we first met, his great sense of humour and the twinkle in his eye always made you feel that you had a true friend.
Our semi annual get together s for pub brunch was very special to us and Mel will be sorely missed.
The love between Mel and Chris was an obvious thing and we are all richer for having known him.
We miss him dearly.
Jack & Lu Lowrie
Mel was kind, lovely and fun and He will be truly missed. That was our pleasure to know him... Krysia our heart is with you ........
I loved our lunches together, our baseball playing, our halloween parties,listening to you talk about birds, playing cards, watching you dance, going to your place for dinner, just spending time with you. I miss your smile, your laugh, your hugs, your love.......... I will miss you forever.
Love your little sis Colleen (Sol)
Christine and Family,
I am so happy you all had the chance to share your lives with Mel.
As you all know, there was no one person better than Mel.
You are so lucky to have shared your lives with the wonderful person Mel will always be.
For me, Mel is a friend for over 40 years of my life. I could ask for no more wonderful person to have been my friend. We shared so much of our intimate lives together and throughout there could never ever have been such a kind, loving, supportive and respectful relationship person.
I am so honoured to say MY VERY WONDERFUL FRIEND MEL.
I love you Mel, I love Omanie, and I love your most beautiful life-partner Christine, and I miss you.
My soul will recognize you in our future.
And, I look forward to sharing with my WONDERFUL FRIEND MEL, again..
"Melly" (as I liked to call him) and I worked together at Wilkinson Steel and were really just business acquaintances up until around the time that Mel decided to share will all of us the sad news of his granddaughter Gaby's battle with cancer. His love for her and his need to "help" in whatever way he could was so apparent that I soon learned who "Mel" really was in his heart and in his soul! I am thankful to have had the opportunity to see what Mel was made of and to get to know him better before he too was taken away. He was one of life's treasures and I will always respect his memory and the impression that he left on me! I hope they are treating you well up there Melly!!!
Mel you were my big brother and my hero. You looked after me when I was young and you cared about me always. You were kind and thoughtful and one of the most special people I have ever known. I miss you terribly.
I am so greatful to have known and worked with you for the past 6 years at Wilkinson. You will always have a special place in my heart.
Mel and I worked together for over 30 years and fished together for the past 20, we had some wonderful times. Every time I go to the lake I will think of him. I will miss Mel but I will have the memories.
Miss you Mel
A beautiful, gentle soul who will be truly missed...
So sorry you didn't get to stay on this Earth as long as you would of liked.
I know you did all you could to enjoy yourself, make your contribution to society, adore your beloved Christina, and the many people you touched in your life, including me! You will be missed by many!
We appreciate how you are watching over us, and sending your vibration of love. We thank you for your essence.
Love & gratitude,
Miss you...love you...thinking of you always...
So sorry to hear of your loss Christine. My condolences to you and the family.
So sadden to hear of Mel's sudden passing.He was a wonderful man and Bob and I will miss him so much but know he is now pain free. All our love to Christine and his family. Love Pat and Bob Porter