February 14, 1927 – December 23, 2019
Helmut was born on February 14th, 1927 in Tarutino, Romania and passed away suddenly on December 23rd, 2019 in Vernon, B.C. at the age of 92 years. He will be lovingly remembered by his wife; Alice to whom he was married for 66 years, his children; Heide Hirschkorn, Hilde (Roman Royko) Hirschkorn and Kelly Hirschkorn, his granddaughter; Jessica Hirschkorn, his great-granddaughter; Summer Crosby, his brother; Victor (Christel) Hirschkorn, his nephews; Andreas (Stephanie) Hirschkorn and Rolf (Joanne) Hirschkorn, his nieces; Ingrid and Angelika Lobitz along with numerous extended family members and friends. Helmut was preceded in death by his parents; Andreas and Maria Hirschkorn, his sister; Hilde Lobitz and by his brother-in-law; August Wilhelm Lobitz.
Dad experienced many difficult challenges throughout his life, but always worked his way through them with positivity, strength and determination. He thought everyone needed a bit of luck to get through life and believed it was luck that allowed him to survive the countless struggles that he faced. In 1940, due to the outbreak of the second World War, he had to flee his families beloved farm in Tarutino, Besserabia and emigrated to Germany. In 1944 dad was drafted into the German Army and later, in 1945, was wounded while stationed in Eastern Prussia. He was a prisoner of war in France and worked with the US Army in Frankfurt until he came to Canada in 1950.
Dad had a love of horses and he moved west where one of his first jobs was as a ranch-hand in Vauxhall, Alberta. Carpentry became one of dad’s passions and main profession. In Calgary, he was employed for 10 years with Walden Construction where he built many schools and his first family home. While riding the Calgary city bus, dad met the love of his life, our mom Alice. They were married on December 12th, 1953 and enjoyed 66 years of dedicated marital bliss. It was while working on a construction project building snowsheds on the Trans-Canada highway that dad was introduced to the Okanagan Valley; he immediately fell in love with the area and knew he had to move his family to this special part of the world. In 1964, dad found work in Vernon with Gustavus Construction where he proudly worked on city structures such as the Vernon Recreation Center and the RCMP station. Dad and mom were thrilled to buy a farm in the BX where they lived for 55 years. They planted a most wonderful apple orchard along with a variety of other fruits such as cherries, peaches, apricots, prunes, pears, grapes and a large vegetable garden. Dad bought a huge “juice press” and customers from all over BC, Alberta and Saskatchewan came to press their own apple juice and to buy fruit. Fruit customers loved our dad’s sense of humor and many friendships were developed over the years.
Dad continued working as a builder and loved constructing countless family homes throughout Vernon. For a short time he even shared a contracting company, “Hel-Vic Construction” with his brother Victor. It gave dad a complete sense of accomplishment and pride to build a home for a family and in his later years he liked to drive by these still existing homes to see how they were being taken care of. Building projects took dad to other parts of BC such as Prince Rupert and Haida Gwaii where he was introduced to the rich seafood offerings of the West Coast.
Dad’s hobbies included enjoying mom’s fantastic cooking, fishing, playing the piano, harmonica, accordion, making wine and gardening; especially growing tomatoes! He loved his many tractors and he was always up to date on the latest news and weather events. He adored FIFA soccer games and was a serious Vancouver Canucks fan!
Dad was dedicated to his family and friends and worked hard and honestly his entire life. He was an incredible husband, father, grandfather and great-grandfather and he will be remembered for his generosity, sharp memory and delightful sense of humour.
We miss you so deeply dad…… gone but never forgotten.
In respecting Helmut’s wishes, he was cremated and a celebration of his life will be held at a later date.
Cremation arrangements have been made with
Bethel Funeral Chapel Ltd.,
5605 27th Street, Vernon, B.C. V1T 8Z5
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