KERNAHAN, G. Martin "Mart"
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June 13, 1923 - January 2, 2013
Mart passed away peacefully at the Rockyview Hospital in Calgary from complications arising from a fall, with his loving wife of 63 years, Elaine, and other family members at his side.
Born in St. James, Manitoba to John Everett and Margarete Kernahan, Mart was the middle of three sons, and soon excelled at both academics and sports. Mart attended the University of Manitoba, where he was the only engineering student to be on both the varsity track & field and football teams. He met and married Elaine in Edmonton in 1949, after they both graduated from their respective universities, he as a Mechanical Engineer. After a short time in the oil business there, he moved to Calgary, where he decided to start his own computer data services company, Computrex, in the early 1960's and grew it into a successful public company with ten locations across Canada that he proudly operated for over 35 years.
Mart had always been an avid skier and was very involved in the initial investment and development of the Lake Louise ski area. He was a founding member (and was awarded a lifetime membership) in the Calgary Olympic Development Association (CODA). In addition to his love of skiing that he shared with his family, he was a sailor on local lakes and in the Caribbean, where he spent many family vacations.
Mart was always active in civic planning and development issues too, and was affectionately known as the unofficial "Mayor of Britannia" where he lived since 1957. Mart was also a proud and long-standing member of the Calgary Downtown Rotary Club, a founding member of the Calgary Petroleum Club and a proud member of APEGA, in which he was awarded a lifetime membership.
In his spare time, in addition to being an entrepreneur and a dynamic father to six children (and later, eight grandchildren), Mart also enjoyed traveling with his wife and his extended family to exotic and interesting locations around the world. Throughout his life, Mart continued to maintain a long-term interest in sports, one that he shared with his wife, children, and later his grandchildren, and for whom he became their number one fan, cheering them on to do their best and to have fun.
Mart is survived by his loving wife Elaine, his children Marilyn, Sheila (and her husband Michael Whitt), John, Lynda, Cameron (and his wife Teresa), and Valerie Sporck, and his grandchildren Chris, Katy, Hillary, Lauren, Hailey, Sydney, Claire, and Austin. He will also be missed by his brother Bert, sister-in-law Dorcas Berry (and her husband Wally), sister-in-law JoAnne Wagner and their families.
A Memorial Service will be held at the Living Spirit United Church (629 - 49 Avenue S.W.) on Friday, January 18 at 11:30 a.m., with a reception and celebration of his life to follow at the Glencoe Club from 1:00 to 4:00 p.m. If friends so desire, donations can be made in Mart's memory to the Alberta Heart and Stroke Foundation (www.heartandstroke.ab.ca). Condolences can be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org
Published in National Post from Jan. 12 to Jan. 14, 2013