In loving memory ~
We are deeply saddened to bring word of the passing of Edward John Walsh on April 23, 2022, in Overlander Long Term Care Home, Kamloops, B.C.
Ed was born on June 29, 1923 in Farmingdale, Saskatchewan. He grew up during the Great Depression in High Tor, Saskatchewan, on the family farm.
In 1942, at the age of 19, he volunteered for the army, and set his path to fight in World War II. While in training, he was involved in testing protective equipment to protect the troops from gas attacks. Ed was in active combat in Europe but missed the warm welcome and fanfare afforded the returning soldiers when the war ended, as he continued serving to help bring calm and justice after the war.
When Ed returned to High Tor, he had plans to farm alongside his parents. When he became ill with rheumatic fever, he ended up in the hospital in Porcupine Plain, Saskatchewan. A young nurse there, Beverly, was one of the staff who nursed him back to health. She captured his heart in the process.
They married in 1950 and, after the arrival of two sons, realized that farming in Saskatchewan wasn't the future for them. They relocated to B.C. and, for a time, lived in Louis Creek, B.C. After the birth of their daughter, they both found work and settled in the Village of Ashcroft.
Ed worked for a few years at a local sawmill and then many years for the Village of Ashcroft, where he took on more and more responsibilities in his position and worked his way up to become Foreman of the Village of Ashcroft. In addition, he believed in being a vital force in the community, so he made himself available for many years helping out as a Volunteer Fireman, attending practice once every week. He was "on call" to attend any and all fires, including wildfires, at any time of the day or night. Because of that, he decided having an Industrial First Aid Ticket was necessary. So, he obtained that accreditation, and received the coveted "A" ticket. That accreditation enabled him to work as an Ambulance attendant/driver and he spent many years volunteering in that capacity.
When Ed was in his fifties, he quit smoking and began an active lifestyle. He ran and walked and hiked up the local hills, learned to play racquetball and routinely beat the daylights out of many individuals much younger than himself. Due to his very active, healthy lifestyle, during his 70's and 80's, Ed was referred to by the local populace as the "60-year-old Swede". He inspired and uplifted so many people with his positivity and good spirits.
When Ed quit his job at the Village, he began working as a Custodian for the High School in Ashcroft and worked himself up to Head Custodian. He spent a few years in this position, enjoying his job and the people very much. He made many friends and the memories brought him a lot of pleasure. Because of his training in First Aid, he also taught students First Aid. After retiring decades ago, many students still remember him from that time to this day.
When he retired, there was a fun-filled, well-attended roast to celebrate his years of service and then Ed and Bev spent well over a decade travelling with well-loved, dear friends and family to Southern California every winter to play golf and get away from the cold B.C. interior winters. Friends from Ashcroft, as well as Ed's sisters and their spouses would join them there, and it was an amazing, cherished time for all of them.
In 2009, he lost his wife, Bev, but continued to live in Ashcroft. In 2013, he sold the home that he and Bev loved so much, and moved to Kamloops to Chartwell Ridgepointe Retirement Home, where he joined many other former "Ashcroftites". He relished several years of happiness and fun, making many more friends, including his particular favourite friend, Jeanne Gagnon, dancing up a storm and winning over many more hearts in the process.
Ed was adored by his family and friends and was a positive influence on everyone he met. He has impacted so many lives for the good. He was a true gentleman. He had a cheerful, upbeat attitude. He was a wonderful neighbour and an even better friend. Ed was always willing to help in any way he could. The sparkle in his eyes and his infectious smile will be remembered forever. His family will always remember him as an incredible, loving, and beloved father, husband, uncle, father-in-law, grandad, great grandad.....and friend.
He was predeceased by his father, John "Jack" Walsh, his mother, Isabella "Bella" Walsh, wife, Beverly and his two sisters, Mary (Tom) and Martha (Glen).
He is survived by his three children, Alan (Edna), Ryan and Valerie and his Granddaughter, Angela (Greg) and Great Grandson, Grayson and his Great Granddaughter, Sophia, his Granddaughter, Loren and his Great Granddaughter, Lily.
The Celebration of Life will take place on Saturday, July 9, 2022 from 1:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. at the Ashcroft Legion. The address of the Legion is: 300 Brink Street, Ashcroft, BC V0K 1A0.
In lieu of flowers, donations to the Alzheimer's Society of British Columbia in Memory of Ed Walsh would be appreciated.