Gerhard (Gary) Collon
It is with heavy hearts that we announce the passing of Gerhard (Gary) Collon, a remarkable man whose journey began in Soltau, Germany, on May 16, 1940. He is survived by his ex-wife Elizabeth and their two adoring sons Daniel Collon (Jennifer) and Steven Collon (Lauren). Beloved grandfather to Tianna, Ethan, Logan, Audrey and Eric.
Born as the 5th child among 5 girls and 7 boys, he learned the value of hard work and determination from an early age. At just 14, he left home to live on a neighboring farm as a farm apprentice, a decision that laid the foundation for his future endeavors.
At the age of 25, he embarked on a new chapter in his life by coming to Canada to work on a farm in Alberta. However, several years of harsh droughts prompted him to explore different paths. He found employment at a sawmill in British Columbia, where he honed his skills and worked tirelessly.
His adventurous spirit led him to join the Department of Public Works, where he became a heavy equipment operator on the Alaska Highway during its upgrade. On June 11, 1976, he proudly became a Canadian Citizen, embracing the country he had come to love.
In his pursuit of a fulfilling life, he devoted himself to working as an equipment operator for the Yukon Government. Through hard work and dedication, he eventually became a Road Foreman, earning the respect of his colleagues and friends. He had a long and distinguished career with the Yukon Government serving 22 years.
Gary was a man of unwavering strength and resilience. During a snowstorm in the 1970s, he found himself in a convoy of vehicles, facing adversity head-on. His resourcefulness and leadership kept everyone going for several days, a testament to his courage and character.
Outside of work, he discovered his passion for woodworking and creativity. In 1980, he built a workshop and began teaching himself the art of woodcraft, crafting unique designs for jewelry boxes and other items. His creations remain treasured keepsakes for those fortunate enough to receive them.
In 1981, love found him, and he married Elizabeth Browne. Together, they welcomed the arrival of their two beloved sons, Daniel in 1983 and then Steven in 1984. Gary embraced fatherhood with boundless love and guidance, instilling in his children the values he held dear.
Life sometimes tests our strength, and in the spring of 1996, Gary faced a heart attack. Despite this setback, his determination never wavered. In November of the same year, he took early retirement from the Highways Department. He looked forward to the time he could now spend with his family.
In January 1997, the family moved into the house he had been building with love and dedication at Judas Creek in Marsh Lake. A sanctuary for his family, it became a place of cherished memories and warmth.
A giving person at heart and wanting to retain the liveliness of the Judas Creek subdivision, Gary leased the Lakeview Marina property to ensure use and enjoyment could be had by all. He managed the marina with the same dedication he applied to every aspect of his life. Gary was an integral member of the Marsh Lake community, pioneering the July 1st Canada Day parade, hosting Easter fires on Marsh Lake, volunteering, and contributing to many community events throughout his years. The dedication, kindness and care he showed to those around him endeared him to all.
Gary will be fondly remembered for his boundless love, indomitable spirit, and the countless lives he touched. He leaves behind cherished memories and an enduring legacy of hard work, perseverance, and love.
Gary was very charitable and donated to many causes throughout his life.
In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations be made to a charity/organization of your choice in memory of Gerhard (Gary) Collon.
May his soul find eternal peace, and may we find solace in the knowledge that his legacy will live on in our hearts and memories forever.