254 THE ADVOCATE
VOL. 79 PART 2 MARCH 2021
He served his profession locally and provincially. He was active in the
local bar, the CBA, the Law Foundation, etc. Perhaps the zenith of his service
was his election as bencher and the years at the bencher table representing
his district, geographically the largest in the province. He was a
positive, committed contributor to the work and social life of that exemplary
group of individuals. The bencher retreat in Smithers is part of
bencher “lore”. He made lasting friends during his years of service. For this,
for his service to clients, for his service to community, Ron was appointed
Ron was a living example—even the personification—of the importance
of lawyers in the less populated portions of our province. That is, outside of
the World-Class City of Vancouver, the Lower Mainland and our beloved
capital, Victoria. Lawyers in small town B.C. are vital to the functioning of
those communities. Lawyers contribute, and Ron sure did. He was the
embodiment of diversity (of interest) and put it to work in and for Smithers.
In addition to being a lawyer, he was an historian, an athlete, a sportsman,
a musician and more. He participated, organized and administered in all
those areas during his life in Smithers. He was a member of musical groups,
judo clubs (believe it or not he had a black belt), the rod and gun club, the
swim club—he instructed in some of those groups. He was a big push in getting
the pool/rec centre built and operating. He was a kayaker. He was skeet
shooting a few days before he passed. He liked a good meal.
Ron was an adventurer. He was a traveller. He took German lessons in
Germany. He explored his Mennonite heritage in the Ukraine, Poland and
Paraguay. He rode camel in Egypt, took the train across Libya, sat on top a
bus through Iran, swam the Hellespont, slept in a Mongolian yurt, dug
latrines in one of the ’stans, enjoyed opera in Verona and stayed at Pat
Schmit’s in Quesnel. A travelling buddy was Gerry Lecovin, whom he was
(and we all are) sad to lose shortly before Ron’s passing. Each fall, he went
pheasant hunting in Saskatchewan or Montana. He had his dogs. The word
“idle” was not in his dictionary.
Ron had his shortcomings. He did not speak endlessly of the
Saskatchewan Roughriders or Gordie Howe. He once bought a membership
in the Liberal Party. He will be forgiven for these flaws.
You could fill volumes about Ron. He would not want that.
Glen Ridgway, Q.C.