Sandy Stevenson

December 13, 1948 –

May 31, 2016

Andrew (Sandy) Brett Stevenson, the first child of Dr. Mack (Edward) Stevenson and Caroline (Belton), was born in Vancouver and passed away at age 67 in great peace, while held by his loving family. Sandy and his sister Muff (Nancy Carol) enjoyed a magical early childhood. The Stevensons moved to Vernon in the fifties to open a family medicine practice and start a new life on the shores of Kalamalka Lake.

Sandy enjoyed the outdoors with passion, got up to lots of mischief in the Coldstream Valley, and by high school was a devilishly handsome quarterback, hot skiier, hockey star, and guitar-playing scholar-philosopher. Ever a prankster, his wild sense of humour was legendary throughout his life. After a stint at Reed College in Portland in chemical engineering, Sandy hitchhiked around Canada and across Europe, hopped a few freight trains, and gained tons of life experience in the work force, holding jobs in the Yukon, Golden, Vernon and Trail. He then found himself back at University of Victoria (UVIC) pursuing his Teacher’s certificate in Education.

Sandy met Pamela in the Art Department of UVIC, while welding a giant frog with a heart of gold; they fell in love and he convinced her to move with him to a one-room cabin in a Vernon orchard to pursue their careers together as working artists. Sandy and Pam were married at Coldstream Park, Vernon, on August 16, 1975, surrounded by many friends and family. After camping around southern BC, the Slocan Valley captured their hearts and they bought their homestead in the fall of 1976. Tara Moani was born at home in July 1978 and Bryn arrived in March, 1983. Sandy provided wonderful opportunities for the family to have myriad backcountry experiences, craft fair road trips, summer camping and fishing on Slocan Lake, manifesting all the blessings of a perfect Kootenay life. Sandy and Pamela exhibited and sold metal sculpture, jewellery, and pottery, under the banner of ‘Amazing Grace’ across Western Canada for 25 years.

The Bhakti Brothers Road Hockey League was formed by Sandy in the mid-80’s and Shaker’s Lodge was built in Airy basin during Thanksgiving of 1987. Sandy was the main hut-keeper for thirty years, and guided many friends and families through the mountains on countless hiking and backcountry skiing expeditions.

In 1992, Sandy attended Selkirk College to gain his teaching qualifications, completed the WKTEP program, and landed what to him was a dream job at Stanley Humphries Senior Secondary (SHSS) teaching Art. He absolutely loved his role as a creative mentor to young people, and was an inspiration for seventeen years of high-school graduates.

Sandy set a high bar for art and many, many students rose to it, developing both their capacity as young artists and a much stronger sense of self at the same time. Accomplished paintings and murals covered the walls of SHSS school for years­, a living evidence of the quality of art and enthusiasm coming out of his classroom.

After retiring in June 2010, Sandy focused on his passion for water colour painting and photography, and he continued to enjoy all his athletic interests in the great outdoors. He continued his life-long meditation and yoga practice with Self-Realization Fellowship (SRF), attending many retreats in Vancouver, California, Hawaii, India and Bali. Sandy was a dedicated founder and service reader of the SRF Winlaw meditation circle for 40 years.

In June 2015, Sandy became ‘OmDad’ to his granddaughter Kira Leilani. He will be cherished as a loving husband, father, brother, loyal friend and devoted family man.

Sandy is survived by his wife Pamela of Winlaw, children Tara Alexander (Jamie) of Port Coquitlam and Bryn of Nelson, granddaughter Kira Leilani Alexander, sister Muff Klein (Jim) of Kelowna, nephew Torey (Carol) of Tsawwassen and the Dale cousins of BC: Chris (Jody), Jeffy (Terry), Stu (DeMaris), Stephen (Megan) and Bruce, as well as his brother in-law Erik Nagley (Denise) of Hawaii.

A celebration of Sandy’s life will begin at 4:00 pm on July 31st at the Vallican Whole Community Centre, with a potluck feast and exhibition of Sandy’s Art; come to share stories, dance together and express our love for him.

“You have to find true peace and happiness within yourself- your outer experiences should be only fun.”

~ Paramahansa Yogananda