Donald Gordon Oakes

Oakes,

Donald Gordon

1936 – 2012

Seadog, Frogman, Hellion. Husband, Father, Grandfather. Pioneer and One-Of-A-Kind. Don moved on peacefully to the next adventure with his family by his side. His spirit and fortitude is a great lesson to us all and will be sorely missed. Don’s legacy is carried on by his wife of 50 years Irene, children John (Kim), Joanne (John), grandchildren Jordan, Christen, Zane and Summer. Predeceased by his parents, sisters and brother. He was the favourite Uncle to many. Rarely did Don fail to make an impression and testament to that is his long list of friends, and associates.

Born and raised in Winnipeg, Don learned early to live life to it’s fullest. He joined the Navy in 1954 as a stoker first and then as a hard hat diver, a most dangerous and difficult endeavour. On discharge, Don continued his independent ways and began to build a life for himself and new family. There was the cabin he built on West Hawk Lake, Snap-On Tools sales and eventually a move to Victoria in 1967. He established a life and reputation in Colwood as a member of the Victoria Real Estate Board. In many pursuits, Don would lead the pack.

His passion for the water continued. He was regarded as a knowledgeable local cruiser and as the owner of many vessels including “Irena”, “Mamita” and “Falcon”, played an important role in the development of Victoria’s Classic Boat Festival. Don was always up for a “Boat Ride” and proudly shared the lifestyle with friends and family. Many an hour was whiled away enjoying “the best cruising in the world” or sitting “on the hook” watching the world go by.

Retirement brought Don to Ladysmith B.C. where he joined the Ladysmith Maritime Society, participating in the restoration and maintenance of the club’s historic vessels. He continued his ways, becoming a part of the social fabric of town, making new friends and leaving his mark. This was also a time to enjoy the fruits of his labours, reflect on life and tease the grandkids.

As life dealt challenges to his health he pushed the limits, rarely accepting the status quo. He continued to maintain his independence and as always, would insist there was a better way. His desire to live persevered. His tough-guy attitude always present.

His family would like to express their sincerest thanks to the caregivers he both hounded and respected. Without them we would not have had the time we did.

At Don’s request, there will be a Celebration of Life. Tuesday June 12, 1:30 pm at the Eagles Hall, Ladysmith B.C.

In Lieu of flowers, the family requests donations to the Canadian Kidney Foundation. Condolences may be sent to the family at telfordn@shaw.ca

Telford’s of Ladysmith, 250-245-5553


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