Reverend Desmond David Holt

The Reverend Desmond David Holt was born in Calgary on April 27, 1921. He passed away peacefully on April 25, 2012 at Heron Grove in Vernon, just two days short of his 91st birthday.

Des served with the Royal Canadian Air Force and was stationed in England for four years as a radar mechanic during World War Two. Upon his return home, he worked for the Bank of Montreal in Nelson until a bishop convinced him that the church was his calling. After three years at the Vancouver Theological College, Des was ordained a priest in 1951, and served as an assistant curate at All Saints’ Anglican Church in Vernon.

It was there that Des met a pretty widow, Dorian Massey, and her young daughter, Cynthia Ann. They were married October 8, 1953, and shortly thereafter Des got his own parish in Enderby. There they welcomed two more children, Catherine and Norman. While serving in Enderby, Des helped build St. Peter’s Church in Sicamous. After Enderby, he served parishes in Creston (where he again oversaw the building of a new church as well as a new rectory), Oliver, Kimberly and finally semi-retiring in Grand Forks. Upon full retirement, Des and Dorie returned to her childhood hometown of Vernon.

Des was always very active in the community. When leaving Creston, he had been involved in so many organizations they all got together to give him one big goodbye and thank-you party that garnered full frontpage coverage in the local newspaper.

Des was a proud member of the Royal Canadian Legion and also the Royal Canadian Airforce Association, and served as Padre to both organizations for some years. He had a passion for golfing (which resulted sometimes in not so priestly language). He enjoyed many a round with his buddies at Spallumcheen Golf Course until ill health forced him to quit.

Des was predeceased by his loving wife, Dorie, in 1991, and his three older brothers: Vince, Bernard, and Cam. He is survived by his daughters Cynthia Walker (Gil), Catherine Lewis (Brad) and son Norman (Linda). He will also be sadly missed by grandchildren: Svea, Russell, Robert, Elyse, Ashleigh, Cody and Christine, and great grandchildren Casandra, Katrina and Olivia.

Des’ compassion along with a dry wit and love of debate endeared him to all whose life he entered.

We, as his family, would like to thank all those in the community who helped Dad in his later years: the Community Care Nurses, the staff at Canterbury Court, and particularly the wonderful staff at Heron Grove. Knowing he was being cared for with such dignity, love and respect gave us much peace of mind.

A Memorial Service will be held at All Saints’ Anglican Church on Wednesday, May 2, at 2:00 p.m., with Canon Chris Harwood-Jones officiating. Arrangements are in the care of Vernon Funeral Home 250-542-0155.

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