George Stewart Suttis, born in Middle Stewiacke, Nova Scotia on Nov. 23, 1933, passed away on May 11, 2012 at the Royal Inland Hospital in Kamloops at the age of 78 from complications of surgery and pneumonia.
George was raised in Nova Scotia and graduated from the Academy in Truro at the age of 16.
He always wanted to be in the RCMP but had to wait until he was 18 to apply and also had to meet the height requirements at the time of five feet, eight inches.
While waiting, he worked at various logging camp jobs and diligently did every stretch exercise imaginable to successfully attain the required height.
At the age of 18 he achieved his goal. He took his training in Regina, Sask. and served in Manitoba, Ottawa, Newfoundland and Labrador. He was shot and after an extended hospital stay, left the RCMP and relocated to B.C. where he worked as a scaler in logging camps near Vanderhoof, Lillooet, Williams Lake and Horsefly.
It was in Horsefly that he met and married his wife Jeanne Duarte, who was a school teacher there.
Jeanne had emigrated from California a few years previously and George had arrived from Nova Scotia and they met in Horsefly.
Jeanne is of Canadian ancestry and when they visited Nova Scotia shortly after their marriage, they were able to locate the grave of her great-grandfather in a pioneer cemetery just a few miles from his home. He loved to tell about how they were fated to meet.
For 12 years George was employed as scaler at the weigh scales at Lignum’s in Williams Lake and had many friendships with the truckers. He would say hello to a trucker when meeting him/her downtown and then quote their truck number to his wife. He loved the daily good-natured banter with his numerous truck driver friends.
George was known for his great sense of humour. He had many quirky stories to tell as life to him, was always one, often hilarious, predicament after another. He wore T-shirts and caps with witty, funny sayings printed on them. Friends always wanted to see what he was wearing and he enjoyed giving them a good laugh.
Following his retirement, George served as a volunteer with different organizations in Williams Lake. He worked as a tutor for adults in Project Literacy and with Court Watch, Community Policing, and Restorative Justice.
For 11 years, he also acted as Santa during the Christmas season for the Child Development Centre and the annual Yuletide dinner. He loved children and being a kid at heart himself was always ready and willing to play.
He was also coach for minor hockey teams in Newfoundland.
His many interests included square dancing, hockey (Canucks fan), hunting, fishing, camping, solving x-word puzzles, playing cards and cribbage at which he excelled and spoiling his adored youngest granddaughters, Ashley and Hayley Godin.
Over the years he had many cat and dog companions that he loved and grieved over. His little dog Pixie is left to mourn the loss of his constant company.
George was predeceased by his parents, Dorcas and Walter Suttis and sisters, Helen Carter and Phyllis Lewis. He is survived by Jeanne, his loving wife of 33 happy years. His children are son Anthony Suttis of Alberta, daughters Heather Styles, Margot Suttis, Annette Baker and eight grandchildren of Nova Scotia and Newfoundland.
He also leaves behind many nieces and nephews.
He will be lovingly remembered by his step-children: Elaine (Roger) Torres, Ray (Charlene) Duarte of California, Kathy (Don) Vallerga, Tammy (Gerald) Duarte of Williams Lake and Janeen (Barry) Godin of Kamloops. His step-grandchildren are: Wendy (Victor) Fettke, David and John Duarte of California, Staci and Michael Duarte of Washington, Jason (Kathy) and Josh (Lisa) Vallerga, Ashley Godin of Williams Lake, Hayley Godin of Kamloops. Step-great grandchildren are Macy Duarte of South Africa, Mathew and Nathan Wilkinson of Washington, Kian Fettke of California, Tinayah Barbour of Alberta, and Ashley Tessman, Sierra and Carter Vallerga of Williams Lake.
No services at his request. Donations in his memory are gratefully accepted at the Williams Lake branch of the SPCA.