Roy Surkan

ROY SURKAN: A Tribute

Farmer, school bus driver, devoted husband and father, devout Seventh-day Adventist. Born March 19, 1932 in Vernon, B.C. Passed away January 11, 2010 at his life-long home on Grandview Flats in Armstrong, B.C., of leukemia, aged 77.

Roy Surkan will be very deeply missed by his wife Carol, one day shy of 47 loving years together, their three children, Wendy, Debbie and Dean, sons-in-law David and Steve, and ALL those who knew him.

A man defined by his family and unrelenting tenacious hard work on the farm, in the early 1970s Roy designed his cattle brand in honour of his family,“C3”. He cherished his farm, cattle and garden. He enjoyed his quiet time reading the Bible daily and pouring over garden seed catalogues in anticipation of the annual summer harvest.

Roy loved food and his epicurean delights included his wife’s homemade borscht, perogies, banana cream pie and apple pie and Chinese take-away from Apple Lane restaurant in Vernon. He savoured the bounty of his garden from radishes in May to new potatoes in July and devoured watermelon and cantaloupe in August. 

Farming consumed the majority of his life but Roy also enjoyed his role as a school bus driver for 28 years, 1969 – 1997, for the Armstrong-Spallumcheen #21 school district. Children, parents and teachers enjoyed Roy’s good-natured friendly charm and sense of humour and they lavished him with gifts every Christmas.

Credited with founding the North Okanagan Hockey League in 1956, Roy assumed a variety of positions on the board of directors including that of association President from 1974 -1975. His passion for hockey was exhibited when he played for the Grandview Warriors hockey team in 1950s and early 1960s.  

The past few years were painfully difficult for Roy as he battled the ravages of leukemia. His family wishes to thank their Grandview Flats neighbours and the Seventh-day Adventist community for their overwhelming thoughtfulness. In addition, they wish to extend their gratitude to Dr. George Borchert in Vernon for his unwavering supportive care over the years, the nurses who administered Roy’s blood transfusions at the Vernon Jubilee Hospital and the nurses and home care staff with Interior Health Armstrong for their kind attentiveness. 

The family wishes to advise they will be holding a private service at a later date.