September 8, 1931 – April 8, 2013
It is with sadness that we share the passing of our husband, father, grandfather, great-grandfather, best friend at his home in Qualicum Beach surrounded by family members. Leo was born in Haarlem, Holland and immigrated to Canada in 1950 full of drive and determination. Leo worked at many different jobs as he made his way across the country. In 1957 he married his best friend Ann upon her arrival from Holland in Canada. Their adventures began in Northern B.C. where Leo worked in Forestry and later in municipal administration in Chetwynd. In 1966 the family, their cats and dog made the journey to Vancouver Island where Leo began his job as administrator for the town of Qualicum Beach. Leo loved Qualicum Beach and treated the town as part of his family. He and the family could be seen driving around the ever expanding community viewing the changes taking place. Leo held this job as town administrator for 27 years. During the first 10 years of his employment with the town he was also the building inspector. During his early years in the community he volunteered as an ambulance driver and eventually ran the program until the provincial government took it over in 1974. He was also involved as a volunteer soccer coach/ referee for more than 20 years and with the Citizens on Patrol program.
Leo had a vision for the town and was committed to its wellbeing, focusing on allowing for green space, flowers and walking paths He was instrumental in acquisitions and negotiations which lead to the town owning the Qualicum Beach Memorial Golf course and Brown Property- Heritage Forest. He was involved in the building of the Town Hall, library complex and other town facilities that benefit the community today. In all of these pursuits, he was helped and inspired by his wife Ann as they worked together as partners on their many projects. After his retirement Leo served three years as councilor. Leo is survived by Ann, his wife of 56 years; children Maureen (Les), Janet (Harry), Gwen (Luc), Lex (Tiffany) and Steven; 17 grandchildren; 4 great grandchildren and extended family members and his beloved dogs.
Leo’s legacy of hard work, commitment, love of nature and music will live on in his family. There will be no funeral service but a celebration of his life will take place at a later date. For those who wish a donation could be made in Leo’s name to North Island Wildlife Recovery Centre.
In memory of Leo please take a walk in the outdoors and appreciate its beauty.
“If you truly love Nature, you will find beauty everywhere” ~Vincent Van Gogh