Jean Leon Desjardins passed away at the Elk Valley Hospital on Friday, January 21, 2011 at the age of 93 years. One of 15 children, John was born in Ste. Amélie, Manitoba on October 18, 1917 to parents Arthur and Adele Desjardins.
John is lovingly survived by 3 sons: Bob, Eugene (Bridget) McWhirter, and John Jr. (Gayle), 3 daughters: Jeanne (Gord) Koenig, Lorraine (Ralph) Will, and Margaret (Fizz) McKie, 18 grandchildren, many great grandchildren and 1 great great grandchild. He is also survived by his sister Thérèse DeLaurier from Laurier, MB, his brother Gerry Desjardins from Winnipeg, MB, 4 sisters-in-law: Bessie Thomas of Burnaby, Betty Cole of Surrey, and Odelia Desjardins and Gertrude Desjardins from Laurier, MB as well as several nieces and nephews. John was predeceased by his parents, wife Helen in 1988, sons William “Bill” and Albert “Abby” in 2009, and also 12 brothers and sisters.
Community minded, compassionate and charitable, John gave selflessly of his time; canvassing annually for the Heart & Stroke Foundation and the Canadian Cancer Society. Throughout the years he sold so many tickets for various charities, he was sometimes called “Johnny Tickette”. He was especially well known for selling his Irish Sweepstakes tickets. A tireless supporter of the NDP Party, John was also a member of the Knights of Columbus, BC Wildlife Foundation, the Royal Canadian Legion, and the Fraternal Order of Eagles, as well as 3 time President of the U.M.W.A. In 1992, John’s efforts and achievements were recognized when he received the Citizen of the Year Award.
John will be forever remembered for the many lives he touched with his kind, loving spirit. His legacy will continue to inspire those he leaves behind.
Prayers were held at St. Michael’s Catholic Church on Wednesday, January 26th. Funeral Mass was celebrated on Thursday, January 27th with Father Bart van Roijen, Celebrant. Interment followed at the Rivercrest Cemetery.
In lieu of flowers donations may be made to the Lilac Terrace Palliative Care Room. Arrangements entrusted to Cherished Memories Funeral Services Ltd.