James Edward Doonan 1923 ? 2006
James Edward Doonan was born in Elmvale Ontario on the first day of the New Year in 1923. He was the fifth child born to Ed and Grace Doonan. He was a mischievous child and carried that trait throughout his life. He loved to tease his children, grandchildren and great grandchildren.
With there being only 4 boys in a family of 15 children, the boys were treated with extra special care, much to the dismay of the 11 sisters.
Needless to say Jim grew up in a happy home with lots of love and hard work.
The family moved to the Peace River Country when Jim was just 4 years old. Jim attended the Landry school but felt that Grade 6 was enough of an education and he would be of more use helping out on the farm.
He met Renee at a dance in Port Alberni in 1953 where he was working firing boilers for McKenzie Barge and Derrick. They were immediately smitten with each other and were married on March 6, 1954. Five children followed over the next 9 years, Trudy, Bonnie, Reta, Gary and Connie.
When Jim wasn?t racing horses or making harness, he earned a living doing construction and driving school bus. He was honored at the Grande Prairie Stampede in 1999 by being named Wagon master of the event. He doesn?t know how many harnesses he cranked out on his machine over the last 40 years, but knowing that most of the drivers had a ?Jim Doonan? harness on their horses always filled him with pride.
Jim also had a love for big toys and over the years acquired argos, quads and even a bicycle built for 2.
Jim always had a great sense of humour and his many quirky sayings will always be in our hearts. We remember when he purchased an exercise bike and was asked if he was riding it a lot. He informed us that the next time we saw him he would be so slim what he would be able to stand under a clothesline in the rain and not even get wet!
We have many fond memories to carry us through this difficult time. He will live on forever in our hearts and minds.
Jim passed away peacefully at home on April 9, 2006 at the age of 83 years. He is predeceased by his parents, Ed and Grace; sisters Jess (Harrod), Myrtle (Hamilton), Audrey (Therrien) and Kay (Espe): brothers Bert and Jack; brothers-in-law jack Harrod, Howard Blew, Clarence Hamilton and Bert Babcock; and granddaughter Teri-Jo Mckinnon.
He is survived by his loving wife Renee; children Trudy (Gary McAllister), Bonnie McKinnon (Ed Oltmanns), Reta Toews (Doug Woodcox),
Gary( Barb Stromquist) and Connie (Rob Muise) as well as 15 grandchildren, 12 great grandchildren, sisters Ada Blew, Mary (Red Wessel), Ina (Lorne McQueen), Jean Babcock, Rose (Jack Howard), Doris (Herb Norden) Rhoda (Ken Beauchamp); brother Glen (Joyce ) Doonan, brothers-in-law George Therrien and Hans Espe.
A funeral service was held on April 12, 2006 at Bergeron Funeral Chapel, Dawson Creek, BC. Officiated by Peggy Bergeron. Interment followed at the Mountainview Cemetery, in Sunrise Valley, BC. Expressions of Sympathy may be made in memory of Jim by way of donation to the ?Hats & Chaps Gymkana Club?, c/o RR 1 Dawson Creek, BC V1G 4E7.
Funeral arrangements were entrusted to Bergeron Funeral Services & Crematorium Ltd Dawson Creek, British Columbia.