Friends have identified one of the three victims in Tuesday’s fatal ammonia leak as Fernie resident and city worker Lloyd Smith.
Smith, who was the director of leisure services at the City of Fernie was also a father, paramedic and pilot.
The Alberta Association of Recreation Facility Personnel (AARFP), of which Smith was the incoming president next April, confirmed his death to Black Press Media Thursday afternoon.
In a post on social media, the AARFP – who’s been in touch with Smith’s family – said members of the association will remember Smith for his “quick and contagious smile, matter of fact way of stating things and most of all, his easy-going nature.”
READ MORE: Fernie mourns after fatal ammonia leak
Stuart Ray, executive director for the association, said it was Smith’s passion to help people.
As a member and instructor of the AARFP, Smith would teach others around the province how to run recreational facilities from sports fields to ice rinks.
Some of Ray’s fondest memories with Smith included representing the association at national conferences during the last two years, alongside other associations of its kind.
Outside of work, Smith had many hobbies and interests, including acting as a part-time paramedic since 1996.
“He was an active outdoors person, enjoyed family and friends,” Ray said. “Being a paramedic was part-time gig he did as a hobby cause he just liked to help people. How cool is that?”
Smith grew up in High River, Alta., according to reports, and lived in Victoria, Golden, Invermere as well as Canmore.
In posts on social media, former colleagues and fellow graduates of the MBA program at Royal Roads University in Victoria described him as dedicated, hard working and a great father.
“He was the guy everyone wanted on their team,” one person wrote.
“Lloyd always went above and beyond when it came to our facility,” another resident of Canmore wrote.
Laureen Harper, wife of former Prime Minister Stephen Harper said in a tweet Smith taught her how to drive a zamboni growing up in High River.
Just found out my childhood friend Lloyd Smith died at the Fernie Arena. He taught me to drive a zamboni at the High River rink. https://t.co/lofmHkk3pm
— Laureen Harper (@LaureenHarper) October 20, 2017
A photo of Smith has been circulating, of him posing with Canadian astronaut Chris Hadfield. When asked why the AARFP chose that photo specifically, Ray said the photo speaks lengths to who Smith was.
“The smile on his face really says a lot about who the man was.”