May 4, 1926 – December 5, 2016
Mel passed peacefully into the presence of his Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ, on Dec 5, 2016 at the age of 90. He and his wife, Pauline, were home alone at Longlake Chateau, where they have been living for two years. He was predeceased by his first wife, Jean, in 2006 and his brothers, Earl, Lloyd, and Ralph. Mel leaves his wife, Pauline; daughters, Lynda (Larry), Joan (Hank), Barb (Bob), Brenda (Carl), and Kathy (Gary); stepsons, David, and Mark (Lauri); stepdaughter, Sharon (Larry); 15 grandkids; 22 great-grandkids; numerous nieces and nephews; and his brother-in-law and sisters-in-law.
Mel was a rancher in Alberta in his younger years, and the Lord blessed him and Jean with five gorgeous girls (two of which were twins). They each learned to ride horseback at an early age and loved it when daddy would take them out to help round up cattle. Mel often said, with a twinkle in his eye, that his girls were as good at rounding up cattle and bringing them home as any boy would be. It was during these younger years that Mel and Jean made a deliberate decision that their family was to be a Christian family. Mel and Jean had recently become Christians, and they wanted this for their girls. So started Bible reading, praying at meals and bedtime, going to Sunday school, and lots of singing. When Mel decided to move the family to Nanaimo, looking for a Church was as important as a house. Being away from the ranch gave Mel extra time for attending evening Bible Studies and pursuing interests like boating, flying, and woodworking. He even became an electrician and worked at Harmac until retirement.
Mel and Pauline McLean were married on April 23, 2011 and experienced much joy and happiness during their years together. They could often be seen walking or sipping a coffee late in the afternoon at the Swy-a-lana waterfront. A boyhood dream of Mel’s was to see the Panama Canal. That they did as they cruised through the Canal right next to the new one that is being built. Another childhood wish was to see the Statue of Liberty and Wall Street. It was thrilling for Pauline to point out to Mel the shoreline of New Jersey, where she once lived and ministered for nine years. The walk through Central Park that day was wonderful, but it doesn’t compare to where Mel is walking today with his back and legs healed. Tears are all wiped away and there is no night there. We have it on the word of a perfect Gentleman. Jesus said, “Come to me all you who are weary and heavy laden, and I will give you rest.”
The family wishes to thank Dr. David Sims for his professional care and for arranging with VIHA for palliative care at the family home. Their care was greatly appreciated. Also, many thanks to everyone at Longlake Chateau for helping to make life more comfortable. A special “thank you” to our church family and friends for their love and prayers.
A Memorial Service for Mel will be held Thursday, January 5, 2017 at 2:00 pm at the Departure Bay Baptist Church, with refreshments to follow. Pastor Tim Klaassen will officiate.
Mel has requested that in lieu of flowers a gift be given to the ministry of Trans World Radio, if so desired.