March 6, 2019
It is with great sadness, that we share that Wally passed away suddenly at KGH on March 6, 2019 at the age of 56.
He remains forever loved in the hearts of his wife of 33 years and best friend, Marilyn, and closest family — Brother Kevin Rilkoff & Jonas Bilo, Brothers and Sisters in Law Vi & John Kalesnikoff and Sherley and Bill Gorkoff. Nieces and Nephews and their families – Carrie & Gary Voysey, Michael & Denise Kalesnikoff, Stacy Gorkoff & Kevin Black, Janet Kalesnikoff & Graeme McLean, Risha Gorkoff & Mike DeBruijn, and Dustin & Dez Gorkoff, as well as many other relatives and friends.
Born in Nelson, BC, Wally grew up in Crescent Valley. He lived in the Lower Mainland, Castlegar and Kelowna. He loved to make people smile and had a mischievous streak, especially when it came to kids. He was most proud of being a P.U.N.K. – Professional Uncle, No Kids. His ability to tinker and fix “stuff” was appreciated by many.
He was an avid golfer, and music was a passion. He taught himself to play guitar, harmonica, banjo, slide guitar, ukulele, & most recently, the mandolin. He also loved camping and boating, and spending time with family and friends. He and Marilyn made travel a priority, and were particularly drawn to SE Asia – they visited Thailand, Singapore & Malaysia several times, along with Vietnam, Cambodia, India, Indonesia and China. He loved Hawaii as well as Mexico, Cuba, and the Dominican Republic. Wally loved animals and they adored him and sought him out. Wherever he went there would suddenly be a dog or cat at his feet.
Throughout his career he worked as a small engine mechanic and instructor, in RV and real estate sales, RV and boat dealership service.
Funeral service was March 16th in South Slocan, BC at the Playmor Junction Church (aka the old Playmor Hall), with interment at the Brilliant, BC Cemetery. A celebration of life followed at the Lion’s Head Pub in Robson, BC. A small celebration of life will also be held in Kelowna at a future date.
Donations can be made on charity tribute pages that have been set up “In Memory of Wally Rilkoff”:
Kelowna General Hospital Foundation – Heart Rhythm Services:
For the thousands of gestures, big & small, that make the loss of Wally bearable, Thank You. There are simply no words that can possibly convey the magnitude of gratitude for your support in so many different ways. Please keep the memory of him and his smile with you.
Marilyn Rilkoff and family.