August 15, 1932 – December 21, 2018
With heavy hearts we say goodbye to our beloved husband, father, grandfather and friend Leo Richards. A mentor and leader to many. With love and pride we recall his many achievements and accomplishments and his determination to live life to the fullest.
“If you don’t like what you are doing, do something else,” were words he lived by as he successfully changed careers and businesses throughout his life, immersing himself in anything that interested him. There was nothing he was afraid of attempting and he was always involved in an endless array of hobbies, interests and business activities.
Leo was born in Selkirk, Manitoba on August, 15th, 1932, the second fraternal twin, born to Archie and Betty Richards (nee Wigham) who had emigrated to Canada from Cornwall and Scotland respectively. In 1946, the Richards family moved to Hatzic Lake, near Mission, B.C. having purchased Swan’s Point Resort where Leo helped his mother run the store. After graduating from Mission High School in 1950, he trained as an X-Ray technician and started work, in 1952, as the youngest X-Ray technician in the province. He moved on to attend the University of British Columbia, graduating in 1960 with a degree in Pharmacy. In 1961, he purchased a partnership in Seymour Drugstore in Campbell River and worked as a Pharmacist for 8 years, selling his business to take up cattle farming after moving to Black Creek with his wife Joan (nee Grant) in 1966 where they lived for 28 years. In 1970, Leo purchased Watson & Ash Transportation, running the Comox Valley school bus contract for 35 years and bringing transit to the Comox Valley. He went on to many other business interests and continued to go to work every day, meeting his friends for Tuesday lunch, until the last few months of his life.
Leo’s activities included important contributions to the community development. He was a board member of the Comox Valley Economic Development, Glacier View Lodge and the North Island College Foundation as well as an active participant in the Lions Club of Campbell River and the Monarch Club in Comox.
An avid collector, he purchased the first box of goods sold at the Cumberland auction in 1971 and attended the final sale before it closed in 2007. A prolific and talented artist, he leaves behind a wealth of paintings, carvings and stained glass. His collections and interests were an inspiration to his children and grandchildren.
We grieve his loss but feel immense pride as we admire his life and are grateful for all he taught us and the time we had with him.
Predeceased by his parents and twin brother, Lyle, he will be missed by his wife of 55 years Joan; children Tanya, Darren and William; grandchildren Ashlyn, Kayden, Gracelyn, Nathalie, Callie and Tristyn; and many extended family and friends.
A celebration of life will be held for Leo in the New Year at a date yet to be determined. In lieu of flowers, donations can be made in Leo’s name to the Red Cross.