It is with great sadness that the Wadsworth family announces the passing of their father, grandfather, great grandfather, brother and uncle. Kenneth Arthur Wadsworth was born June 23rd, 1930 and passed away on Monday, April 10th, 2017 at the age of 86. Ken joined his wife, Ruth, in eternity while surrounded by the loving family that they created.
He leaves behind his 4 sons: Dave, Rick (Marg), Jeff, and Mark (Tova); 12 grandchildren, 19 great grandchildren, and countless nieces and nephews. He also leaves behind his sister, Dorothy (Bill), from North Carolina.
Ken was born and grew up in Winnipeg, Manitoba. When he was 20 years old he moved to Vancouver, BC where he met Ruth Turner, who would become his wife of 55 years. His career life started in Vancouver where he worked in a bank, a finance company and also for Woodwards as a store detective. He then moved to Chilliwack to work as a traveling salesman for Domtar Building Materials. With his wife and 4 children in tow, he was transferred to Prince George where his route ran from Prince Rupert to 100 Mile House. He traveled over 1,000 km twice a month, on highways where much of the route was gravel. He became the top salesman of the company but his adventure didn’t stop there. Next he bought into Modern Building Supplies in Abbotsford, BC, but unfortunately that didn’t go so well. He then decided to buy a wholesale meat cutting business called Maple Leaf Sales, which was run out of a small workshop at the seller’s house. He moved it from there to a downtown location and he, his son, Dave, and a butcher, turned it into a thriving business before selling it and moving to Vernon. In 1974, Smitty’s Pancake House was opened and 10 years later it became Waddy’s Family Restaurant and the infamous “Waddy” man was erected. During his time at the restaurant he always provided his patrons with a friendly smile and warm hello while pouring coffee and clearing tables. He invented a unique system for clearing tables known as the “flower”. His staffs became part of his family and still are to this day. In 1984, Ken and Ruth retired from the restaurant business. In 1985, he decided to partner up with his friend, Jim Atmore, and embarked on his last business adventure. In the fall of 1986, Hillview Golf Course was born. He enjoyed a good 20 years at Hillview until his retirement in 2003. During retirement he spent countless hours skiing on the slopes of Silver Star, golfing, clearing tables and pouring coffee at Waddy’s. He also enjoyed singing as a tenor with the Vernon Community Singers, playing bridge, curling, traveling and spending time with his family. In February 2008, he lost the love of his life, Ruth, to cancer. In 2014 Waddy’s Family Restaurant closed its doors for good, leaving a legacy that will never be forgotten. Ken was truly an inspiration in the business world and to the family he created.
He had a kind heart and will be remembered for his unique and witty sense of humor. His wit often took a few moments to unravel but when it did, you couldn’t help but admire him. He will be forever in our hearts and will live on through the family he has left behind.
A celebration of Ken’s life will be held on Friday, April 21st, 2017 at 1:00 pm at the Vernon Alliance Church located at 2601- 43rd Avenue with Rev. Clint Batchelor officiating. Tea and snacks will follow.
Arrangements have been entrusted to PLEASANT VALLEY DIGNITY FUNERAL HOME, 4303 P.V. Road, Vernon, B.C. V1T 4M4 Phone: (250) 542-4333.
Condolences may be offered at pleasantvalleyfh.com