ANDERSSON, Karl Olov Rudolf
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Karl Olov Rudolf Andersson, born in Canwood, Saskatchewan on January 18, 1934, died on November 8, 2011. Rudy was the only son of Karl and Stina Andersson. His passing leaves a huge void in many lives and is deeply felt by his wife Maria Hiske Gerding; the children from his first marriage: Lois, David, Rolf, Linnea, and Paul; his stepchildren Leontien, Harm, Reineke, and Elke; his daughters- and sons-in-law; the grandchildren and their children. He also leaves behind his sisters Elsie and Sonja, their spouses and families as well as the family of his late sister Lilly and many relatives in Sweden. He embraced both family and friends with warm hospitality, steady, gentle friendship and generous dialogue. His Swedish heritage, strong family values, and work ethic pervaded his professional life and surfaced in his expert craftsmanship, his love for Scandinavian music, lore, genealogy and traditional foods which resulted in berry picking expeditions with friends and family. Those who were close to him describe Rudy as a man of the forest, kind, well centered, straddling many lives, timeless, at home everywhere in this vast, changing world. He was always available to listen and give counsel when asked. Rudy advocated the principle of life-long learning, a philosophy he lived and practiced till the end.
He studied at the University of Saskatchewan and the University of Alberta. In conversation he expressed his abiding interest in and knowledge of the sciences, history and philosophy. Rudy shared his role as an educator-explorer with his family and those around him. He was a teacher, principal and administrator across Northern Alberta and Saskatchewan and in Nigeria, Africa. He contributed to the educational legacy of the Community Vocational Centres in Slave Lake, Alberta (now the Northern Lakes College) during its foundational years until he left as President.
Rudy became an accomplished bush pilot. He invested personally in a number of single engine aircraft to travel to the remote northern communities of Alberta in order to better serve its people.
Even with his death, Rudy's desire to educate has continued. Therefore, his wish is hereby honoured to remind as many people as possible about the vital importance of a healthy lifestyle and pro-active medical care. Rudy had great regard for medical research as well as the preventative role of good nutrition. He participated to the end in his colon cancer treatment regimes, actively studied possible applications of new knowledge and debated with his physicians and other health care professionals their potential and perceived benefits.
Rudy will be remembered for his sense of humor and quick wit which made him a wonderful story teller and public speaker. We will remember him with deep affection.
A private celebration of his life will take place, at his request, this summer. He will also be remembered in the Alumni Memorial, Interfaith Service under the auspices of the University of Alberta Alumni Association on May 26, 2012.
Published in The Edmonton Journal on May 11, 2012