Obituary – Francis Godfrey Ferguson

Francis Ferguson

Francis Godfrey Ferguson of Kamloops, B.C. passed away on March 8, 2023 with his family at his side.
He is survived by his beloved wife Deanna and their children Judy (Len) Dunn of Kamloops, Laurie Ferguson of Slave Lake, AB, Joyce Ribalkin of Kamloops, Mike (Cindy) Ferguson of Castlegar; grandchildren Tyler (Amber) Dunn, Katie (Steve) Prior, Aaron (Melissa) Dunn, Chelsey Boissonneault, Patrick (Kris) Surrette, Charlotte Ribalkin, Kyle Ferguson, Conal Ferguson, Tyrane Ferguson and great grandchildren Braxton, Avery and Paige Prior, Casey and Emily Dunn.
He was predeceased by his parents Harold and Lottie Ferguson, brother and sister-in-law Lewis and Frankie Ferguson, son-in-law Bill Ribalkin and grandson Lonnie Ferguson.
Francis was born on April 17, 1935 in High Prairie, where his spent most of his childhood only living briefly in the Yukon with his family after the war. As a teenager, he excelled in hockey, baseball and curling and loved to spent time in the outdoors hunting and fishing with his brother, Lewis and their friends.
Francis left High Prairie for Whitehorse, Yukon to find work in 1953. In 1955, he packed his car and headed south and joined his mother, father and sisters in Edgewater, BC.
In October 1955 Francis met a clown at the Halloween Masquerade who changed his life! That night he met Deanna, it was a relationship that started out with a strength and brightness that was sustained throughout their marriage. They were married in February of 1957 and called a tiny trailer in Moyie home.
While in Edgewater, Francis worked for Spike’s Sawmill, Wilder Brothers Mill, Kirk’s Christmas Trees, Government Survey in Kootenay Park, and finally for Dawson Construction. It was the work for Dawson that would take Francis, Deanna and their new family to Moyie, Castlegar, Golden, Donald, Kootenay Park and finally back to Edgewater. Along the way they welcomed Judy, Laurie, Joyce and Michael.
In 1964, they pulled up stakes, packed their trailer and made the big move to Kamloops where Francis worked for Patek Mill and Logging Supplies as a mechanic and then a shop manager.
In 1969, Francis and Deanna opened F.G. Ferguson Equipment on West Victoria Street in Kamloops – it was a nothing ventured, nothing gained moment! Here Francis started out as the lone mechanic, parts and salesperson for small engines, lawn and garden equipment, chainsaws and snowmobiles and Deanna began her career as a bookkeeper and “Girl Friday”! It was risk worth taking and very soon the business expanded to the current location on Seymour Street.
Francis was an extremely hard worker always ensuring that his customers had the best service possible. He was very proud that their youngest son, Michael, worked at the shop for many years and was grateful for the support of his staff members.
While this was happening, he was busy with the kids on the ball fields in summer and in the winter, you would find them all in the arenas. In the early 1970s they purchased a tiny cabin on Dominic Lake. Francis loved teaching his children and grandchildren how to fish, chop wood and enjoy the outdoors – they all have wonderful memories of the time spent at the lake with grandad.
Among the many community endeavours that Francis was involved in, he was most proud of being president of the Kamloops Snowmobile Association and the money KSA raised for the Children’s Hospital through Snowarama.
In 1982, Francis and Deanna moved to their beautiful log home on the South Thompson River. It was a great place for family and friends to gather to enjoy the gardens, orchard and massive lawn that Francis took so much pleasure in caring for.
Francis and Deanna sold Ferguson Equipment in the spring of 1990 and enjoyed retirement on the river until 2000. Then they moved to Rose Hill and had many caring neighbours.
Francis and Deanna loved to travel and had many trips to places afar but they also never missed an opportunity to reconnect with family and friends. They loved to go back home to High Prairie and Edgewater to catch up with those who made these places so special.
Deanna has been in care at Brocklehurst Gemstone since the fall of 2014 when her Alzheimer’s progressed to where she was not able to be at home and Francis moved to Mayfair to be close to her. He spent all of his time with her, walking over early in the morning and staying with her until the evening. His love and devotion never lessened as he continued to care for her even after joining her at Gemstone in 2018 due to Parkinson’s disease. COVID lockdown was a very difficult time as he and Deanna were cut off from family except for Facetime visits. He was so thankful when family could finally come in to visit.
Francis continued his love of sports throughout his life and always enjoyed a game of catch until the last few days of his life. He followed the Canucks, Blue Jays and enjoyed watching curling. He was a huge Kamloops Blazer’s fan – a community shareholder and an original season ticket holder. He attended games even as it became physically difficult. Francis and his family spent his last evening watching the Kamloops Blazers and Vancouver Canucks win their games – a most fitting sendoff!
The family would like to thank the staff and residents of both Mayfair and Gemstone who gave kindness and support to Francis over the past nine years. A very special thanks to Stephanie and Maddi for their smiles, care and the joy they brought to Francis each week as they helped him to cope with his physical ailments – they brought a sparkle to his eye each time they visited.
Donations can be made to the Alzheimer’s Association in Francis’s name. A celebration of life will be held a later date.
Condolences may be please be expressed to the family at kamloops

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