It is with deep sadness we announce the passing of Leslie Allen Soleway on Christmas night at the age of 78. Les is predeceased by his first wife Mavis & his parents Lars & Astrid. Les is survived by his loving wife Jill, whom he married in 1988, his sons Brent, Jay (Cheryl) and their sons Riley, Jake and Jedd; brother Bob; sister Bernice and many nephews and nieces.
After graduating from Lord Byng High School, Les started fishing halibut with his Dad Lars on the fishing vessel Zapora. In 1955 Lars built a new F/V & titled it the Alaska Queen to symbolize the years spent fishing Alaskan waters, sometimes travelling through the Bering Sea as close as 200 miles from Siberia, and to continue longlining halibut and accommodate Les’s desire to purse seine. Les soon became captain of the Alaska Queen and skippered the boat on halibut, herring and salmon fisheries. While fishing the boat in iced up conditions in the Gulf of Alaska, the boat took on water suddenly and Les and the crew had to abandon the boat to the icy waters. All crew were saved.
With a young family at home, Les wasted little time on shore by purchasing the Mermaid II and renaming it the Alaska Queen II. Les’s determination, perseverance and business sense resulted in a very successful fishing career. Today, Les’s youngest son, Jay, carries on the family tradition of skippering the F/V Alaskan Queen II throughout the BC Coast. Les was a director of Pacific Coast Mutual Marine Insurance Company for many years. His love of sports led him to become an active member of Hollyburn Country Club and Vernon Golf & Country club. He overcame the odds by fully recuperating from a brain aneurism in 2001.
A Celebration of Life will be held on Sunday, January 8th, 2012 from 1pm to 3pm at the Arbutus Club, 2001 Nanton Street, Vancouver, BC. Internment to follow at a later date with immediate family. In lieu of flowers, donations would be greatly appreciated to the GF Strong Rehabilitation Centre, 4255 Laurel Street, Vancouver. BC. V5Z 2G9