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February 12, 1939 ~ November 23, 2023 (age 84) 84 Years Old
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We regret to announce the passing of Brian Bower Kelly on November 23, 2023, at 84 years of age. Brian spent his final years in Creston, BC., where he has resided at the Swan Valley Lodge. He leaves behind his brothers; Robin (Linda), Denis (Kathy) and their families in New Zealand. Among his friends in Canada are his ex-wife Caroline (Tom), Caroline’s sisters Alice and Sue in Creston, Kevin and Laura in Savona as well as many veterans and close friends who will miss his cheery chats and tales.
Brian was a proud Legion member being the president of the Ladysmith Branch #171 for a time.
Born in Devonport, New Zealand on February 12, 1939, he developed a keen interest in sailing which became a lifelong passion. As a young man, Brian left New Zealand as a private in the 1st Battalion of the NZ Regiment, deployed to Terendak, Malaya (Malaysia) in 1961. Brian was also a member of the 1st Battalion Pipes and Drum band as a tenor drummer. He served three tours of duty on the Thai border and in the Highlands north of Ipoh. Following the end of his service in 1964, he and some friends travelled by car from Iran up through Afghanistan, ending in the UK. A short stint in commercial fishing in Iceland encouraged him to come to Canada, arriving in 1968 and finding work in Toronto. He moved to British Columbia about 1981, where he has resided ever since. Brian worked in a variety of jobs over the years including: an IT Tech for the CIBC bank, a groundskeeper on golf courses, caretaker at a remote fishing resort and as a security guard. After a seven-year marriage he was single and remained friends with his ex-wife. Brian lived in many places in B.C. much of it on Vancouver Island.
He looked forward to his trips back to New Zealand and watching rugby matches. A connoisseur of pepper beers he enjoyed sampling the various craft breweries’ versions. A solid man, he was welcomed in many places! He will be missed!
While there will be no service or funeral by his request, people wishing to honour him may donate to the Make-a-Wish Foundation, which works with terminally ill children.
He did ask that if a party is held in his honour, to play the Elvis Presley’s song: “I did it My way “!
For any more information contact Kevin or Laura at 250-373-0955.