Vern Burnell Passed Away December 16, 2018
Vern Burnell got his wings on December 16, 2018. While it's hard to say goodbye, we hope he is laughing and dancing again with his wife Verna.
He was larger than life and will be missed by so many. He owned who he was always. He had a powerful presence and not everyone saw eye to eye with him but you’d be hard pressed to find someone he knew who didn’t respect him. Those who loved him; and there are many; loved him deeply. He taught and shared and inspired and will be missed deeply.
Vern's life took him from a farm in Unity, Saskatchewan, to Ponto Road in Rutland at the age of 9. In 1962 he married Vernalynn Mae Porter, the love of his life; and their life together took them to Prince George, then Surrey and then back to Rutland where they raised their two children; Shauna and Brad.
Together Vern and Verna started Burnell's Turf Irrigation in 1969 and then Van-Kel Distributors in 1978; struggling and risking so much together and helping and inspiring countless others along the way. So many friends and family worked for and with them over the years and there are hundreds of stories of working on irrigation crews with Vern, running into him while he travelled the province, and the parties and laughter he loved so much, with Mom at his side.
He was “Vern from Canada” and loved to tell people that Mom got the “a” in her name for being smart. He was quick with comebacks and hugs and he appreciated everything he had. He instilled in us that "every day's good, just some are better". He was positivity personified and we will miss him so much.
So for all of us now missing him - raise a glass, tell a good story, and laugh and love deeply.