Landscapes 11

Gordon Alexander Stobbe

December 11, 1927 ~ October 5, 2023 (age 95) 95 Years Old

Gordon Stobbe Obituary

Gordon Alexander Stobbe died peacefully at the wonderful age of 95, on September 15, 2023, in the Comox Valley Hospital in Courtenay, British Columbia after experiencing heart attack.

Gordon was born in Altona, Manitoba on December 11, 1927. He grew up in the Mennonite farming community of Altona where he went to school and started working in the printing industry for his uncle’s firm D.W. Friesen and Sons while in school. He started fulltime once he was finished with school. Gordon married Irene Siemens, who grew up on a farm just outside Altona, on October 2, 1953, in Winnipeg, Manitoba.

In 1955 Gordon and Irene moved to Red Deer, Alberta for a job opportunity in the printing industry. Gordon worked at the Red Deer Advocate as a hot metal linotype operator type setter. From there, in 1957 Gordon and Irene moved to Calgary, Alberta. Gordon worked at The Albertan (daily newspaper), Foothill Printers (commercial), Western Printing and Lithographing (commercial), and Calgary Typesetters (typesetting). Gordon was very involved in the International Typographical Union (ITU) and was a union organizer from 1976 to 1980 and was a member of the ITU for 40 years. Gordon then moved full circle and started working for his uncle’s firm D.W. Friesen and Sons again helping communities write their town history books and school yearbooks all over Alberta until 1991 when he retired from D.W. Friesen and Sons.

 In 1967 Gordon and his family built a cabin in the mountains 20 kilometers east of Canmore, Alberta in a hamlet called Lac Des Arc. There they would spend many weekends and holidays doing what they loved most; hiking, cross country skiing and bicycling in the Rocky Mountains. It was just a one-hour drive from Calgary on a Friday night after work. In the late 1980’s they tore down the original cabin and built a permanent home where they lived for many years. They then moved into Canmore and lived there until 2003 when they moved with their daughter Greta and son in law (Dales deceased) to Vancouver Island, specifically Courtenay BC.

Gordon loved music and it played a big part in his life. He sang in the Unitarian Church Choir, The Calgary Philharmonic Choir and the Calgary Choral Society even driving into Calgary from Lac Des Arc for rehearsals. Gordon played the tuba in Canmore in the Bow Valley Concert Band for many years and when they moved to Courtenay he joined the Comox Valley Concert Band where he played the tuba once again for many years into his late 80’s. Gordon was an avid curler and golfer in the Comox Valley and enjoyed working out at a local gym at least three times a week until his early 90’s! Gordon was a voracious reader and had tremendous respect for the written word. Gordon had a wonderful memory for remembering dates of certain events and names of people from the past. Gordon was a ball cap collector and had caps from many places that he wore with pride.

Gordon was a big believer in volunteering. In his early days living in Calgary, he volunteered for the Unitarian Service Committee, The Calgary Memorial Society, Calgary Unitarian Church and as an official for his daughters who were in competitive swimming and track and field. When they moved to Canmore he volunteered with the Canmore Food Bank, Canmore Trail Minders, and he worked on a section of what is now called The Great Trail (The Trans Canada Trail) between Lac Des Arc and Deadman’s Flats. He donated funds to help build this trail and his children have their names on memorial plaques at various places along the way across the country. He was very much an environmentalist scouring the ditches on the highway around Lac Des Arc picking up garbage and recyclables. He built a recycling station for the residents at Lac Des Arc and the money he got for the returnables went to helping the Municipality build a playground for the children at Lac Des Arc.

Gordon is survived by his wife Irene Stobbe (nee Siemens) and three daughters; Greta Judd (Dales Judd deceased), Rachel MacAulay (Mark MacAulay), Elizabeth Stobbe (Dan Bal), three grandchildren Jennifer Petrovics (Jordan Petrovics), Jeff Judd (Charlotte Judd), Megan MacAulay (Cooper) and three great grandchildren, Brooke Petrovics, Emma Petrovics and Milo Judd. He is also survived by his sister Irene Raedel. He was predeceased by his parents David D. Stobbe and Anne Stobbe, brother Ronald Stobbe, sister Marilyn Nelson (nee Stobbe) and son in law Dales Judd.

As per the request of the family there will be a small private family memorial. If you wish, please donate to an organization that was important to Gordon. You can donate to The Unitarian Service Committee or The Trans Canada Trail.

Thank you to the wonderful staff with the BC Ambulance Service, the amazing Emergency Room staff and the staff on Floor 3A of the Comox Valley Hospital. Your kindness and care were appreciated by the family.

Hard to sum up 95 years but he had a “life well lived”.




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