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Janzen, Barry Paul

(April 27th, 2024)

It is with heavy hearts and profound sadness that we announce the sudden and unexpected passing of Barry Paul Janzen of Nelson BC at the age of 68 years on April 27, 2024.

Barry was born in Kelowna BC on December 28, 1955, to parents Sam and Rosa Janzen, a baby brother for sister Bonnie and brother Brian.  He grew up in Kelowna and shortly after graduation he left Kelowna to study Forest Technology at Selkirk College in Castlegar.

Upon graduation from Selkirk with a diploma in Forest Technology, he began working as a Forest Technician for the Ministry of Forests in many locations throughout the province.  In 1983 he accepted a position with Selkirk College in the Forestry Program.

In 1986 Barry met the love of his life Debbie, and her two young daughters, Kristin and Shannon.  Soon they found themselves moving to Shoreacres where he was able to realize his dream of having his own Christmas tree farm.  He spent many, many hours and days through the years tending to those trees.

Barry decided to return to school to get his degree in Forestry in September 1991.  He attended the University of Idaho for two years graduating in April 1993.  He returned home and began his new career as a Forestry Instructor at Selkirk College.  He spent the rest of his working years sharing his passion for the forests and outdoors with all of his students.

After his retirement in 2010, Barry spent his time fishing, golfing, hunting, camping, travelling, watching all the sports he could possibly watch, and wandering around in the forests looking for that perfect Christmas tree to bring home for next year, installing game-cams, looking for antlers, and loving the forest.

2011 brought the purchase of a travel trailer which was placed in Balfour.  Many days and weeks were spent at the trailer relaxing, golfing and fishing.

In 2017, Barry and Debbie sold the Shoreacres farm, and moved into a condo in Nelson to begin another life journey.  This was a big adjustment for Barry but he soon became the “go to” guy for many condo residents requiring assistance and played a large role in caring for the gardens and landscape.

He and Debbie enjoyed many years travelling to California for February and March – February was spent in the desert in Borrego Springs and March was spent beside the ocean in Oceanside.

Barry was always willing to lend a hand (with a chainsaw, pruning shears, or whatever was needed) to all of his family, friends and neighbours.  His family and friends have described him as kind, caring, calm, helpful, humble, an excellent teacher and mentor and a great friend.

We will all miss his sense of humour and his words of wisdom and he will be missed immensely by everyone who knew him.

When his brother, Brian, became ill with cancer, Barry spent countless hours travelling to Kelowna to care for him.  He also became the primary caregiver for his Mom after Brian’s death.  He was such a fine example of kindness and devotion.

He will be especially missed by his wife Debbie, his step-daughters Kristin Laidlaw (Matt Howell) of Castlegar and Shannon Carr (Chris) of Calgary, and his three grandchildren Owen, Anthony and Abby;  his sister Bonnie (Wayne) Ratzlaff in Saskatchewan and their daughters, Tanis (Perry), Jody (Stan), Sandra (Kent), and their 10 grandchildren, as well as many cousins.

Barry was predeceased by his parents Sam (2012) and Rosa (2019) Janzen and his brother Brian (2013); in-laws Eric (2014) and Beryl (2003) Anderson.

The family would like to thank the E.R. team at the Kootenay Lake Hospital for their kindness and compassion and valiant efforts.

His cremains will be placed in the Balfour Cemetery during the summer.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to a charity of your choice.

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