President, Everest of Thunder Bay
May 24, 1931 June 17, 2011
Mr. Alan George Gardiner, age 80 years, former long-time resident of Isabella Street, passed away unexpectedly, but with dignity, in hospital on Friday, June 17, 2011.
Born and raised in Winnipeg, Alan lived there until moving to Thunder Bay in 1972. In 1946, Alan started with his family's firm of A.B. Gardiner and Co. Funeral Directors, in Winnipeg, earning his Manitoba Funeral Director's and Embalmer's licenses in 1952. He remained with the family business until he returned to University in 1965.
In 1958 he met the love of his life Eleanor Ruth Lundman and they were married in 1959. Together they loved to travel sharing many adventures both home and abroad.
In 1972, Alan joined the Federal Department of Indian and Northern Affairs at which time he moved to Thunder Bay. Later, as a private business consultant he was extensively involved in numerous small industrial and resource-based projects.
In January 1979 Alan returned to funeral service, and purchased the Everest Company, and earned his Ontario Funeral Director's License. Alan always strived to better meet the needs of the families he served, which lead to him introducing various new and innovative services. In 1997 his dream was fulfilled with the opening of the Everest Westfort Chapel.
Over the years he was very active in the Thunder Bay community, serving as Chairman of the Volunteer Bureau; a member of the board of the Fort William Y.M.C.A., and of the Thunder Bay Symphony Orchestra. Former active member of Fort William Rotary, the Shuniah Masonic Lodge, the Scottish Rite of Freemasonry and the Thunder Bay Executives Association.
During the 1970s and 1980s Alan and his wife Eleanor, became heavily involved in Jamaican development projects. They assisted for many years with the Portmore faith community. In 1987, Alan received the Silver Centenary Medal from the Scalabrini Missionary Order for his work on behalf of the Catholic Church.
One of Alan's biggest passions was music. From studying classical piano to voice training he appeared in various stage musicals in both Winnipeg and Thunder Bay. In recognition of his contribution to the arts in Thunder Bay, in 1992, Alan was awarded the Regional Arts Council Award to Small Business. Alan was a regular guest soloist at various churches in Thunder Bay. He, his wife Eleanor and their family are active members of St. Paul's Anglican Church. Ultimately, Alan's loves were for his family, his music, his faith and his community.
Alan is survived by Eleanor, his wife of nearly 52 years; their three children, John-Bryan (Lynn), Marjorie of Toronto (presently here), and Fiona-Jean; and their granddaughter Healey Malvina. Brother-in-law Dr. Bernie Boecker in Duluth, MN, as well as numerous nephews and cousins in Winnipeg, Toronto and Vancouver also survive.
Predeceased by his parents, Arthur Bertram and Ethel Gardiner; brother Wilfred Gardiner; sisters Marjorie Rose and Jean Boecker.
Funeral services for Alan Gardiner will be held on Wednesday June 22, 2011 at 1:00 pm in St. Paul's Anglican Church, Ridgeway Street East, with the Reverend Deborah Kraft officiating. Interment in Riverside Cemetery. Pallbearers will be extended family and friends, David and Dan Stezenko, Allan J. Niemi, James Keigher, Bruno DiGregorio, and Mike Wrenshall. Visitation for family and friends will be after 6:00 pm Tuesday evening (TONIGHT) in the EVEREST FUNERAL CHAPEL, 299 Waverley Street at Algoma.
If friends so desire donations to Shelter House, St. Paul's Anglican Church, or the Alzheimer's Society would be greatly appreciated.
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