June 1, 1932 to June 25, 2012
Ron has gone fishing…It is with deep sadness and loving memory we say farewell to Ron, a proud and loving father, grandfather and friend!
Ron was born in Cranbrook B.C. on June 1, 1932, the oldest of 4 children. Ron spent the majority of his 80 years in the West Kootenays, roaming the hillsides; riding the train to Nelson; helping his neighbours, working and raising a family. Ron was well known for the generosity of his talents and the time it took to get the job done RIGHT! A perfectionist at heart he kept the bar high for himself in everything he did. The West Kootenays were his home and his community with lifelong friendships and memories.
Ron would be most proud of:
• His marriage to Joan Delores Wandler November 20, 1954…it was love at first sight. Ron and Joan were married for 52 years when Joan died June 21, 2006.
• Completing his machinist apprenticeship with Comico, July 1955. Ron was a proud tradesman; his son Terry followed the trade’s path as a journeyman lineman and his grandson Justin as a journeyman electrician.
• His children Terry Ronald Helge and Karen Louise.
• His daughter’s choice in a husband from Alberta. There was not a visit that went by that Darcy didn’t remind Ron of the outstanding dowry owed to him.
• His grandchildren Justin, Shaylen, Devon and Dakota. Ron and Joan spent many hours and days with their grandchildren. They were the light of their lives and the pride and joy of their hearts. Much time was spent at Mirror Lake where the grandchildren were encompassed in love and summer time fun. Immeasurable experience, teachings and relationships each of them will carry forward through their lives.
• Family immediate and extended.
• Working for Comico and West Kootenay Power and Light Company and retiring after 38 years of service.
• Being of Swedish stock…a stubborn old Swede he was right till the end. Ron had an opportunity to travel to Sweden with his brother and his brother’s wife in 2008 where he was able to connect with many of his relatives and see some of the country.
• Being a staunch NDP his entire life, campaigning and supporting the party.
Ron did nothing to harm the earth he lived on. He was a great outdoors man, loving the experience of hunting and fishing and the beauty of the mountains and streams. He was always careful to leave the land as it was prior to his arrival.
Ron was a strong, good man. He was a planner and a thinker and meticulous in the execution of his plan. There was no such thing as can’t, there was always a solution to every problem. He could fix, repair and build pretty much anything. He had a great mechanical mind.
Ron had a great love for sports, spending many hours supporting local minor and senior hockey, as a fan for his children and then his grandchildren. When not at the facility, Ron spent many hours in front of the TV cheering his teams on.
Ron had a second chance at love with Eileen Madelung. Ron and Eileen were in middle school together in Nelson. Eileen remembers Ron as a shy handsome young man she had a crush on back in the day. Three years ago Ron and Eileen had the good fortune to cross paths, reconnected by mutual friends. Their common community, common memories and common friends made their relationship an easy transition. Eileen lifted the loneliness Ron was living in and brought a sense of life and purpose back to him. Through Ron’s relationship with Eileen he had the good fortune to develop valued friendships with her son John and her daughter Judy and husband Steve.
Ron died at the Kootenay Lake Hospital on June 25, 2012 with his daughter Karen and his partner Eileen by his side and holding his hands. Many of his family and friends visited him in his final days, surrounding him with love.
Ron is survived by his son Terry of Summerland, BC, his daughter Karen Donahue (Darcy) of Fort Macleod AB, his 4 grandchildren Justin, Shaylen, Devon and Dakota, his 2 brothers Eugene and Garry and his sister Marilyn and their spouses and children, his sister in laws Louise, Sheila, Yvonne, Judy and Debbie and bother in law Gary and their spouses and children. Ron was predeceased by his loving wife Joan Delores Jacobson, his father Axel and mother Alida.
A Celebration of Ron’s Life will be held on Saturday August 4, 2012
At: The Nelson District Rod & Gun Club
801 Railway Street
Nelson B.C. V1L 5P7
Time 11:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m
Luncheon to follow.
Following the Celebration of Life there will be a Graveside Service for immediate family.
If you have any stories or memories you would like the Celebrant to share at Ron’s Celebration of Life please forward by July 30, 2012 to:
or mail to:
Fort Macleod AB T0L 0Z0