“Schugy” as he was known to so many, passed away suddenly on November 7, 2012. Born August 13, 1934 in Provost Alberta to Robert and Marie Schug, Rene was predeceased by his brothers Raynold, Emile and Andy and is survived by brother Fred and sister Nelline Shiels. He was also predeceased by brothers-in-law Bill Hayes and Ernie Wilkins, and is survived by sister-in-law, Marjorie Kushnir.
Rene was much loved by Lorna, his wife of 58 years; his children, Deborra (Bruce) Adkins, Douglas Schug, Larry (Angela) Schug, Angela (Tom) Virs; his grandchildren, Melissa (Tyler) Cody, Adam (Kimberly) Schug, Travis Schug, Kathleen Johnstone (Jason), Ashley Schug, Olivia, Spencer and Mercedes Virs, and Dylan (Kristin), Morgan (Emily) and Emma Adkins; and his great grandchildren, Noah, Nathan, and Finnley Cody, Cydney, Chelsey,and Caleb Turner, and Levi, Avery and Lillian Schug. We all miss you, Poppa Rene!
Rene grew up on an orchard in Keremeos, BC. His first job at 15 was at Copperplate Mine, where in his spare time he mentored the children in the camp, teaching them to build things. There he became friends with Ernie Wilkins, and it was on a motorcycle trip to visit Ernie in Alberta that he met his bride-to-be, Lorna. Soon after marriage, they moved to Powell River, where Rene worked at the pulp mill, a career which saw him transfer to the mill in Port Alberni. There he built his first truck, converting an old car into a pickup. He would often moonlight, picking up extra work, and one of those jobs lead him to Parksville and the Sea Edge Motel.
Rene and Lorna purchased the motel and moved their young family to Parksville in 1968. Rene blossomed in the social setting of the motel. He loved to go cabin to cabin, greeting guests with a big smile and lots of jokes, often returning home hours later after enjoying more than a few cocktails with his happy holidayers! A simple trip to the Credit Union or to Noden’s Hardware could take hours, earning him a few curses from Lorna. Rene was a great employer, keeping many staff for decades, in particular office manager, Wendy Tessier, his “adopted” daughter. He often joked about how you can pay ‘family’ less!
A couple of decades of hard work paid off, and in 1985 they retired and daughter Angela and husband Tom took over managing the motel. In retirement, they were able to travel extensively, visiting Europe, Australia, New Zealand, China and more. They also put many miles on their RV, with several trips across Canada, the US and to Mexico. The RV was always big, to accommodate the grandkids, who often went camping with their Granny and Poppa Rene. Rene adored his grand- and great-grandkids, and religiously attended their baseball, football or hockey games, concerts and birthday parties, where he was an enthusiastic cheerleader for all the kids. He was a great supporter of charities, donating money or buying their lottery tickets. Thursday evenings found him helping to run the Parksville Benevolent Society bingo.
Rene loved a party and regularly hosted large gatherings for family and friends. He enjoyed life to the fullest, and always had a ready smile and a corny joke to share wherever he went. His happy nature and love of life kept him younger than his years, and it certainly helped him get through the many health challenges he experienced. Finally, it was his big heart that gave out, and he slipped away from us much too soon.
A Celebration of Life was held for Rene on November 12 in Parksville.
In lieu of flowers, please make a donation to the
Heart and Stroke Foundation or the charity of your choice.