Obituaries

Melba VanSickle

A photo of Melba VanSickle

Service:

Private

Visitation:

Private

Melba (Fox) VanSickle of Dresden passed away at the Chatham-Kent Health Alliance on Friday June 24, 2016. Melba was the only daughter of the late Willis & Gertrude (Wall) Fox and lived her life in the Dresden area with her husband Leo VanSickle to whom she would have been married for 63 years this coming September. Melba and Leo raised three children; Jeff & Janet VanSickle of Chatham, Gail & Marc Eskritt of Blenheim and John & Brenda VanSickle of Florida. They are the proud grandparents of John, Shawn, Lynn & Rachel, Darrell & Anna, Makaila, Shelby and Lily. Great-grandmother of Lucas and Graham.  For a time, Melba was a Switchboard Operator for Bell in Wallaceburg but stopped working to take care of her mother. She and Leo farmed together outside of Dresden. She will be remembered by many nieces, nephews and cousins. Melba’s wish was that her funeral arrangements would be a time shared by her family. She will be laid to rest with her parents in Dresden. Blenheim Community Funeral Home entrusted with funeral arrangements. Friends wishing to remember her with a memorial donation are asked to consider the Salvation Army.

Ron Girard

A photo of Ron Girard

Service:

Blenheim United Church
Monday June 20, 2016
11:00 a.m.

Visitation:

Blenheim Community Funeral Home
Sunday June 19, 2016
2:00 - 4:00 & 7:00 - 9:00 p.m.

Ronald Willis Girard of Blenheim and formerly of Hearst, Ontario passed away in the arms of his loving best friend and wife Susan on Friday June 17, 2016. Ron was born in Hearst 83 years ago to his late parents Willis and Ivy Girard. He grew up with three sisters and is survived by Dorothy Leger and Debora Vaillancourt (Reg) and by his brother in law Albert Lahde all of Hearst. Also survived by many nieces and nephews.  Ron was predeceased by his sister Sylvia Lahde. Ron was an electrician by trade and worked as a manager at a large mill in Hearst that produced wooden products. Following his retirement, he and Susan moved to Blenheim. He was a quiet man who was content to sit and appreciate the world that surrounded him, he was a gentleman who was quick to offer his help to those in need and he was not only a husband but he shared a connection with Susan that was very strong. Friends and family are invited to visitation at the Blenheim Community Funeral Home on Sunday from 2 – 4 & 7 – 9 p.m. A Funeral Service for Ron will be held in the Blenheim United Church on Monday June 20, 2016 at 11:00 a.m. Cremation to follow.   Friends wishing to remember Ron with a memorial donation are asked to consider the Cancer Society or the O.S.P.C.A.

Ralph Thomas

A photo of Ralph Thomas

Service:

Blenheim Community Funeral Home
Saturday June 25, 2016
11:00 a.m.

Visitation:

Blenheim Community Funeral Home
Saturday June 25, 2016

Masonic Lodge Service: 9:45 - 10:00 a.m.
Visitation: 10:00 - 11:00 a.m.

Ralph Thomas of Cedar Springs and formerly of Erieau passed away on Saturday June 11, 2016. Ralph was born in Garfield Heights 66 years ago to the late Ruth & Ralph Thomas. He is survived by his wife of 48 years Dawne (Schroeder) Thomas, his son Sean Thomas and his daughter Shannon Thomas & Mike. He was the proud Papa of Bella and Taylor and Grandpa to Dalton and McKenna. Ralph was one of 9 siblings and is survived by Roger & Sandy Thomas, Ruthann Engle, James Thomas, Larry & Leslie Thomas, Darlene Thomas, Rusty Griffith, Debbie & Steve Brown and Kenny & Diane Thomas. He is also survived by his step-mother Shirley Gay, his step-father Earl Woodhull and sisters in law Dyanne Srokosz and Doree Schroeder.

Ralph was proud to be a decorated Vietnam Veteran. It was before his tour that he married Dawne and they began their family. Soon they moved to Erieau when Ralph took a position with International Harvester. Being a skilled carpenter, Ralph eventually ran his own construction company Thomas Home Improvement Services. He enjoyed his time as a Mason, being Past Master of the Kent Lodge #274 AF & AM in Blenheim. Although he wore many hats in his life, Ralph was happiest spending time with his family.

In keeping with Ralph’s wishes, cremation has taken place. A Celebration of Life will be held at the Blenheim Community Funeral Home on Saturday June 25, 2016 at 11:00 a.m. Prior to the service, there will be Masonic Lodge service at 9:45 a.m and a time for visitation between 10:00 – 11:00 a.m.

.Friends wishing to remember Ralph with a memorial donation are asked to consider Pet Rescue or the Masonic Lodge in Blenheim. Condolences for the family and memorial donations may be left online at www.blenheimcommunityfuneralhome.com

Matthew Knott

A photo of Matthew Knott

Service:

Blenheim Community Funeral Home
Friday July 8, 2016
2:00 p.m.

Matthew Knott passed away unexpectedly at his home in Courtney B.C. on June 8, 2016. Born in Chatham on September 7, 1963, Matthew is the son of Murray and the late Helen Knott. He will always remain in the hearts of his sisters Dixie & Delbert Jackson, Diane & Ivan Bonnell and Darlene Knott, his brothers Mike Knott and Mark Knott, his nieces and nephews Taylor, Madison, Hailey, Isaac, Monique & Eddie, Megan & Simon, Rygel & Aliece, Jolynne and great nieces and nephews Bradley, Cassidy, Noah, Dakota, Christopher, Nyssal, Cahira and the late Alexander. Matthew will also be missed by his extended family and friends. Matthew grew up in Blenheim and attended W.J. Baird Public School and Blenheim District High School. Following his High School graduation he attended Kings College in Toronto where he became a diver, a job that he enjoyed working at for almost 30 years.

A service for Matthew will be held at the Blenheim Community Funeral Home on Friday July 8, 2016 at 2:00 p.m.. Online condolences for Matthews’s family may be left at www.blenheimcommunityfuneralhome.com

Ted Grey

A photo of Ted Grey

Service:

Blenheim Community Funeral Home
Tuesday June 14, 2016
11:00 a.m.

Visitation:

Blenheim Community Funeral Home
Monday June 13, 2016
2:00 - 4:00 & 7:00 - 9:00 p.m.

Donald Edward “Ted” Grey of Blenheim, much loved husband of Judy (Lynch) Grey passed away on Friday June 10, 2016. Ted was born in St. Thomas 75 years ago to his late parents Edna Jean (Zoller) and Donald Allen Grey.  Ten days after his birth, Ted’s mother passed away and he was loved by a second mother, Elsie Grey who has also predeceased him.  Together, Ted and Judy shared the joys of raising four children; Juli & Lee McEachran of Blenheim, David & Debbie Grey of London, Jason & Valerie Watts  of Niagara Falls and Donald W. Grey who passed away in 1994.  They were also the number one fans of their four grandchildren; Erin McEachran, Connor McEachran, Lauren Grey and Logan Grey.  Ted will be missed by his sister Barbara & Alphonse Willie of Rodney, his nieces Laura and Krista, his nephew Jeff and his constant four legged companions Marley and Zoey.

At the age of 16, Ted went to work on a lake freighter. From 1967 – 2006 he worked for the CSX Railroad as a Burro Crane Operator.  It was there that he acquired the name Gopher, or as his license plates say “GOFRR”.  Ted enjoyed golfing and ice fishing, old movies and drives by the lake.  He was a connoisseur of country music and fine beer.  The softer side of him enjoyed cooking, baking and puttering in the garden.  He was a member of the Royal Canadian Legion, Branch 185 in Blenheim and he was a Mason with the Kent Lodge #274 AF & AM in Blenheim.  He was quick at offering help to those in need and he had a witty sense of humor that he was able to maintain through his challenges with Alzheimer’s.

Family and friends are invited to gather at the Blenheim Community Funeral Home for visitation on Monday from 2 – 4 & 7 – 9 p.m. A Funeral Service for Ted will be held at the Funeral Home on Tuesday June 14, 2016 at 11:00 with Rev. David Fuller officiating.  Interment will take place in Evergreen Cemetery.  Acting as pallbearers will be his sons David and Jason, his son-in-law Lee, grandsons Connor and Logan and good friend Brian “Gus” Oakey.  Flower Bearers will be granddaughters Lauren and Erin and Honorary Bearers will include Clarence Shaw and Paul Garay.

Friends wishing to remember Ted with a memorial donation are asked to consider Trinity Anglican Church or the Chatham-Kent O.S.P.C.A.

Benjamin Pepper

A photo of Benjamin Pepper

Service:

Private

On Thursday June 9, 2016 Benjamin Nathan Pepper was born in London.   Although he couldn’t stay, he will be forever held in the hearts of his Mom and Dad, Sarah Embury and Joel Pepper of Ridgetown. Also looking forward to Benjamin’s arrival were his sister August, his grandparents Rick & Anne-Marie Embury of Blenheim, Lisa & Doug Walker of Morpeth and the rest of his family and friends. Benjamin is together in heaven now with his grandfather Ron Pepper. Benjamin’s services will be private.

Edward Yakey

A photo of Edward Yakey

Service:

Private

Ed Yakey of Cedar Springs, husband of the late Irene Yakey passed away in Chatham on Saturday June 4, 2016. Ed was born in Ansonville, Ontario 93 years ago.  He was a member of the First Canadian Paratroop Battalion, serving from 1939 – 1945.  Ed and Irene raised two children; Laurie Meriano of Cedar Springs and Michael Yakey of Calgary.  In keeping with Ed’s wishes, cremation has taken place.  Blenheim Community Funeral Home entrusted with arrangements.  Online condolences for the family and memorial donations may be left at www.blenheimcommunityfuneralhome.com

Erhardt Lothar “Al” Kaden

A photo of Erhardt Lothar “Al” Kaden

Service:

Blenheim Community Funeral Home
Thursday June 2, 2016
11:00 a.m.

Visitation:

A time of visitation and sharing of memories will follow the Celebration of Life

Erhardt Lothar Kaden “Al” of Blenheim and formerly of Erieau passed away peacefully at the Chatham-Kent Health Alliance on Wednesday May 25, 2016 at the age of 83 years. Al was the only child of Gertrud and and Albert Georg Kaden who immigrated to Canada from Germany. He was an accomplished musician who composed symphonies; his proudest moment being when one of his works was performed by the London Symphony Orchestra. Al also played in the Windsor Symphony Orchestra. Beyond that, Al had an insatiable quest for knowledge. He read many books and was self-taught in many disciplines. In his life he made many friends including Don Spicer & Maryanne Zoldy, John Spicer and Lorraine Burk who faithfully sat by his bed since a stroke he suffered on Mother’s Day. Cremation has taken place. A Celebration of Al’s life, conducted by Pastor Tim Joyce, will take place on Thursday June 2, 2016 at 11:00 a.m. at the Blenheim Community Funeral Home. Al was a Christian man who was ready to help in any way that he could. It would have made him happy if people wishing to remember him with a charitable donation would consider the Soup Kitchen at the Word of Life Church in Blenheim.

Arthur “Paul” Shillington

A photo of Arthur “Paul” Shillington

Service:

Glad Tidings Community Church
Saturday, May 28, 2016
11:00 a.m.

Visitation:

Blenheim Community Funeral Home
Friday, May 27, 2016
3:00 - 5:00 & 7:00 - 9:00 p.m.

The Blenheim Masonic Lodge will conduct a service at 6:45 p.m.

Arthur Paul Shillington passed away peacefully at the hospital in London on May 19, 2016.  Born in Chatham 75 years ago to the late Clare and Edith (Kelly) Shillington.  He is survived by his three daughters, Kelly Shillington, Lynn (Pat) Pearson, Heather (Matt) Boswell.  Also survived by brothers Peter (Ruth) Shillington and James (Mary) Shillington, nephews Harold (Dawn) and Cameron Shillington, nieces Gen (Dr. David) Huffman and Kim Shillington.  Paul was predeceased by his wife of 47 years, Carole Elaine Shillington.

Paul enjoyed travelling, golfing, curling and sailing. His real passion was serving the Blenheim Shrine Club.  He was a Mason, Shriner and Jester for over 60 years and Potentate in 1999.  He will be sadly missed by his grandchildren, Bridget and Bryan Lyne, Madelyn, Jacob, Alex, Abigail, Isaac, Jonathin Pearson, Danielle Laier, Benjamin and Samantha Boswell.  He will also be missed by special friend Hartley Luckey.

A celebration of Paul’s life will take place at The Glad Tidings Community Church in Blenheim, Saturday, May 28, 2016 at 11:00 a.m. with visitation on Friday, May 27th from 3:00 – 5:00 and 7:00 – 9:00 p.m. at the Blenheim Community Funeral Home.  Friends wishing to make a donation in Paul’s memory may do so to his favourite charity Cystic Fibrosis.

 

Ken McCullough

A photo of Ken McCullough

Service:

Private

Visitation:

Private

Ken McCullough of Chatham passed away on Monday May 2, 2016 at the age of 74 years. He is survived by his wife Penny who he met on a blind date 48 years ago and married six months later. Those who knew Ken would know that the happiest times of his life was when he was surrounded by children, especially his children and his grandchildren. He was an awesome Dad and Grandpa to Bobbi-Jo & Stu Ferren and their children Addison and Drew, to Daniel McCullough and his children Alyssa and Gavin, to Jacques & Jennifer McCullough and their children Tyler, Jacqueline and Patrick and to his honourary grandchildren Dan, Zackary and Anna who emigrated to Canada from the Ukraine.

Growing up Ken was the second oldest of six children. His oldest brother Marvin (late Shirley) would have taught him some of the life skills that he and his younger brother Don (Emily) would need to survive some of life’s challenges. The three of them were followed by two sisters Carolyn and Catherine and finally their youngest brother Bob.

Friends will remember Ken for the many years he served as a dispatcher for the Chatham Fire Department, a job that he loved. He spent his spare time camping, fishing, searching for that one gadget that Penny would find most helpful and convincing his children that attending a car show with him would be the best time of their lives.

In keeping with Ken’s wishes, cremation has taken place. A private family service will take place at a later date. As Ken now joins his friend Ronnie on their next adventure his family would like to thank Dr. Kate Bailey and staff for their many years of excellent care and the staff of the Chatham-Kent Health Alliance whose compassion and care was unmatched over the past few weeks.

Friends wishing to remember Ken with a memorial donation are asked to consider the Blenheim Seniors Centre.