October 21, 1941 – September 28, 2016
Ron Ross, 74, of Castlegar, BC, passed away September 28, 2016, with his family by his side.
Ron was born in Red Deer, AB, to Margaret and George Ross, their only child. When he wasn’t getting his teeth knocked out playing hockey, he loved hunting with his father . He was devoted to his mother.
Ron met Elaine at 15 and were immediately smitten by each other. They married on his birthday in 1961, hoping he’d not forget his anniversary. He tended to be preoccupied and Elaine recognized this early. Together they raised their family and grew their business, EMCO Engineering. While Ron engineered and learned public service, Elaine ran the office and their home. She is the only person who could read his handwriting and reign in his boundless energy – his equal. Together they formed a team that lasted decades and accomplished many things.
At 28, Ron was elected to Surrey City Council as an Alderman. This fired his passion for public service.
At 32, he took his family on vacation to the Kootenays and while skiing at Red Mountain, asked them if they’d like to move there. The decision was unanimous.
Castlegar was his “home”, Red Mountain was his other place of residence. He loved to ski! For Ron, the fresher and deeper the powder, the better. When asked to sit on the board of the Red Mountain Ski Club, he obliged and served until the hill was sold to private investors. When his kids showed a penchant for ski racing, he became a director of the Red Mountain Racers. When his kids played hockey and baseball, he coached them, sometimes coaching two teams at once. When there was no pool for his community to swim in, he helped get one built.
In 1976, Ron joined Rotary and his passion for public service blossomed. He wore many hats within Rotary. He was awarded Citizen of the Year in 1988 after his hard work in obtaining the Castlegar Aquatic Centre. Ron was a member of the Castlegar Sunrise Rotary Club, and a Castlegar Rotarian for 40 years. As a Rotarian, he worked tirelessly for his community. He has been a great inspiration and mentor for many people within, and outside of Rotary. His final years were invested in HELP Honduras, a Society dedicated to educating children and supporting their families in a holistic manner. Ron was also on the Board of Community Futures for 15 years, and the selection committee until his passing.
Ron had little tolerance for nonsense and preferred to focus on the end goal. He gravitated to folks who felt the same. He loved people with a sense of humour. He often said it was possible to do serious work without being serious. If you had a big challenge or crazy idea and a sense of humour, Ron was your guy. He loved thinking outside the box. Ron believed in people and the difference people working together can have on our world. He believed we can affect positive change and lived his life as such, to the best of his ability. He appreciated imperfection and knew achieving perfection was lifelong work, achieved by some but not by many..
Ron was a man of great honour, with a heart of gold and had a gift to make friends, and make people laugh. In the summer, he especially loved to barbeque – Grampa’s Famous Chicken was always enjoyed and devoured by all.
Ron is survived by his loving wife of 54 years, Elaine, his children, Jim (Rachel Abbey), Ken, Beaver (Roseanne Van Mierlo), Susan Furlong (Shane), grandchildren Emma, Hannah, Kalsey, Amber, Duncan, Logan, Jintia, Tenysha, Cyan, Kali, Kyra and his great grandchildren, Chevelle, Fletcher, Gracelynn, Caydence, Jaydan and Riegan.. He is also survived by his father-in-law and stepmother-in-law, Ralph and Kay Dickieson, as well as sister-in-laws, brother-in-laws, nieces, nephews and cousins. He loved them all to bits, even when they were a pain in the ass.
A celebration of life will be held on October 15th at the Portuguese Hall in Castlegar at 2 pm. He has requested a ’Celebration of Life’ and asked for those whom he loved and loved him, to help finish the refreshments and a roasted hog. Please join us and help send Ron/Dad/Grampa/Poppa/friend, out with a roar.
Ron did not care much for flowers, pomp and circumstance. In honour and at his request, he has asked folks to make a donation to the Tegucigalpa Market Children through HELP HONDURAS SOCIETY in his memory. Website is: HELPHONDURAS.CA (In memory of Ron Ross), or by cheque or cash – tax receipts are available. Ron was cremated and asked for his ashes be spread over his beloved Red Mountain by his family on a sweet powder day. Cremation has taken place under the direction of Alternatives Funeral & Cremation Services.
WE LOVE YOU RON, DAD, GRAMPA AND GREAT GRAMPA.
Celebration of Life
Location: Portuguese Social Centre – 421 13 Ave, Castlegar. Beside Columbia Basin Trust. Date: October 15, 2016 Time: 3 PM