Aldred C. ‘Al’ Edwards

October 1, 1935 – June 21, 2020
With deep sadness we announce the passing of Aldred (Al) Edwards on June 21, 2020 in Vernon, BC.
He leaves behind his devoted wife of 59 years, Betty; their 3 children, M. Glenn (Kari) Edwards of McKinney, TX, Beverly Edwards (James Touw) of Vernon, BC. and Gregory (Ronda) Edwards of Sundre, AB; six grandchildren, Christina (Andrew), Kathryn (Dan), David, Jennifer, RaeAnn and Barry; and two great-grandsons, Isaac and Luke.
He is also survived by his brother Dale (Paulette) Edwards of Camrose, AB, along with numerous nieces, nephews, cousins and friends. Al was preceded in death by his parents Cyril and Irene, and by 3 of his brothers; Barry, Terry and Cyril.
Al was born to Cyril & Irene Edwards (nee Pavely) in Unity, SK. The eldest of 5 boys, Al spent his early years as a “free range child”, growing up in the rural farming communities of Senlac and Evesham, SK. After graduating from high school, Al enlisted in the Royal Canadian Air Force and headed east to Quebec, to enter military training.
Following basic training, he began his military work as a Fighter Control Operator (a.k.a. Fighter Cop). It was during this time that he met and married Betty Jean Nicklin, on July 9, 1960. As a young married couple, Al & Betty were stationed at a number of air force bases in Quebec. During this time, they also had two children and later, Al remustered into Construction Engineering, where he worked as a Draftsman.
After 10 years of service in the military, Al was granted an Honourable Release. He and Betty, along with their two children, moved back to the west and settled in Edmonton, AB. Here Al settled into civilian life, began work as a Design Draftsman, and together with his wife welcomed their third child. While working full time, Al enrolled in NAIT (night school) to pursue additional education. He then moved into Heating, Refrigeration and Air Conditioning Engineering Design, where he worked for the remainder of his career, in a variety of sales and management positions.
At the age of 62, Al transitioned into semi-retirement within his chosen field. Two years later, Al transitioned again, entering full-time retirement. Retirement was a busy and happy time of life for Al and his beloved Betty. Together they enjoyed an active social life and they shared many adventures, while camping with friends and family. While not an avid overseas traveller, Al’s most memorable trips included a 25th anniversary tour to the United Kingdom, a 40th anniversary tour of the Maritime Provinces, and a RV trip along the Alaska Highway to the Yukon.
In 2001, Al and Betty relocated to the sunny Okanagan, where their social circle continued to be enriched by the friendship and laughter shared with new friends. Al was a sports enthusiast throughout his life. He was a devoted fan of many sports, none more so than those he loved to play. In his early and middle years, Al proved to be a lively competitor in baseball, curling, golf and downhill skiing. However, it was hockey, his absolute favorite sport, which earned him the nickname “Red Light”. He played this “Canadian classic” until arthritis forced him to leave the sport in his 50’s. Community involvement always played a big part in Al’s life. Whether serving as the mess hall social convener, coaching community sports, participating as a lodge member with the I.O.O.F., or serving on a local community board of directors, Al was always involved with people. He was a hard worker, who demonstrated steadfast integrity, and a desire to always “make things even better”.
Retirement years allowed Al pursue his creative talents in wood carving. His pursuits in this art filled many hours, garnered several awards, an honorary lifetime membership with the Vernon Woodcarvers Society and another well-loved nickname – “Mr. Chips”.
In January 2017, with the advancement of his Progressive Neurological Disease, Al became a resident in Heron Grove Complex Care facility in Vernon, BC. It was here, on Father’s Day, that he slipped from his afternoon nap into his eternal sleep. May he rest in peace! With COVID restrictions in place, a Celebration of Life will be held in Vernon at a later date. In lieu of flowers and for those that wish to, a donation can be made in Al’s memory to the Parkinson Society of BC, or to the Heart and Stroke Foundation of Canada.
You are invited to leave a personal message of condolence at the family’s on-line obituary @ www.MyAlternatives.ca
Arrangements entrusted to Alternatives Funeral and Cremation Services, Vernon 250-558-0866 & Armstrong 250-546-7237.
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