DEMPSEY, Wendell Llewellyn (Lew)
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September 20, 1928 - February 20, 2014
Lew Passed away in Nelson B.C. peacefully, with his love of his life Ioline near, and friends at his side. He was predeceased by his father Wendell and his mother Emma and his three sons, Patrick, Brian, and Robert. He is survived by his grandson Michael Dempsey (Debbie) and great-granddaughter Emily Dempsey of Victoria B.C. and his granddaughter Sheri Miller (Stuart) and great-granddaughter Samantha Miller and great-grandson James Miller of Whitecourt Alberta, and 25 nieces and nephews.
Lew was born in Norwood Colorado and his parents Wendell and Emma were Canadians and soon after Lew's birth they moved back to Canada to Neville, Sask. Shortly thereafter they moved to the Kootenay area of BC. While living in the Castlegar/Trail area he met his wife to be Ioline Redding. On 5th October 1946 Lew joined the Army of the United States as a Military Police Officer and was sent to occupy Japan. He left the service on 13 Feb. 1948. On the 5th June 1950 Lew joined the BC Prov. Police and was posted to Prince Rupert and on the 16th of July 1950 he married Ioline Redding in Prince Rupert. On the 15 Aug. 50 the RCMP took over the Provincial Force and Lew became a member of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police. Lew was transferred to the Cloverdale Detachment, a move the Dempsey's thoroughly enjoyed. Their three sons, Patrick, Brian and Robert were born there. In 1961 Lew was promoted to Cpl. and transferred to Sooke Detachment as o/i/c. Lew and Ioline became an integral part of the community and both remain Icons in the area to this day. Lews policing skill were soon recognized and in Sept 67 he was promoted to i/c of the General Investigation Section in Victoria Sub.Div. where all his friends will remember ("A Number 1 Dipsey Doodle"). In 73 he was promoted to S/Sgt. and sent to Vancouver and was a member of C.L.E.U. from 74-83. He was given his commission to Inspector on May 1st 1975 and he ended his RCMP service as 2/OC Nelson Sub.Div on June 4th 1985. At that time Lew was the last serving member of the former BC Provincial Police. After retirement he served with the BC Police Commission and the BC Gaming Commission where his police skills proved extremely valuable during Expo 86.
The Dempsey's enjoyed summer vacations at Christina Lake with family and friends for many years. Ioline was a source of great strength and support for Lew and was known as Sgt. Dempsey during their time in Sooke as she ran the office, answering phones, feeding prisoners and ran the operation when the boys were on the road. He retired to a lakeside home in Balfour BC until 2013 when his and Ioline's health started to fail and they moved to a retirement home in Castlegar until their final move to Mountain Lakes seniors home in Nelson. Ioline passed away 12 hrs after Lew which was fitting as they were so close to each other and they headed off to join their boys together. LEW DEMPSEY was a natural born leader who exhibited all the virtues implied in the role. He was the epitome of a "MOUNTIE".
Both he and Ioline will be well remembered and deeply missed. Memorial Service and Mass will be held at the Cathedral of Mary Immaculate 813 Ward St. Nelson BC on April 11th, 2014 at 11AM. Online condolences may be expressed at www.thompsonfs.ca. Funeral Arrangements are under the direction of Thompson Funeral Service Ltd.
Published in Vancouver Sun and/or The Province on Mar. 4, 2014