Al was born on December 21, 1942 in Regina, SK and passed away with his family by his side on December 12, 2012 in Burnaby, BC, a few days short of his 70th birthday. He is predeceased by his sisters Iris and Yvonne, his brother David (Dorothy), his first grandson Jonah, his brothers- in-law John (Barbara), Mike (Joy), Kevin (Barbara) and his niece, Debbie (Gerry). Al will be missed by his wife of 46 years, Lois; his daughter Christine (Tom); his three grandsons Eli, Sam, and Callum; his sister Sheila (Larry); his sisters-in-law Dorothy (Fred), Barbara and Joy and brother-in-law, Bill (Carol), as well as many extended family members. Al had a long and distinguished teaching career that began in 1962 at Hastings Elementary School in Vancouver, where he met his wife, Lois. They were married in 1966. During his career, he became president of VESTA (Vancouver Elementary School Teachers Assoc.) and later received Honourary Life Membership. He also became a school consultant and a school administrator. In addition, he became president of VESPVPA (Vancouver Elementary School Principals and Vice-Principals Assoc.) Finally, he took a position in human resources at the Vancouver School Board. He continued his commitment to teaching after his retirement by participating in the BCTF (BC Teacher's Federation) Assistance Society and the Vancouver RTA (Retired Teacher's Assoc.) later becoming the VRTA president. He was a master at chairing meetings from the school level to the BCTF AGM. Al kept in touch with many of his former students, some of whom later became teachers and were mentored by Al. Al especially loved hockey, all sports, traveling, photography, fine wine, good chocolate, reading, anything to do with trivia and spending time with friends and family, especially his grandsons. In 2004 he was diagnosed with Parkinson's Disease, which slowly took away his ability to participate in the things he loved. Special thanks go to the staff at Burquitlam Lions Care Centre, Eagle Ridge Hospital MCU, and St. Michael's Hospice for the care and compassion Al received. A Celebration of Al's Life will be held on Saturday, December 29, 2012 at 2:00 p.m. at Valley View Funeral Home 14660 72 Avenue, Surrey, BC. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made in Al's memory to the Parkinson Society of British Columbia or the BC Children's Hospital.
Published in Vancouver Sun and/or The Province from Dec. 22 to Dec. 23, 2012