John Chamberlain
John Chamberlain
John Chamberlain
John Chamberlain
John Chamberlain
John Chamberlain

Obituary of John Chamberlain

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It is with deep sadness that we announce the passing of John Arthur David Chamberlain, resident of Dawson Creek, British Columbia, on Monday, December 6, 2021, at the age of 76 years. 

John Arthur David Chamberlain

Dec22, 1944 - Dec 6, 2021

 

We are gathered today to honour the memory of John Arthur David Chamberlain, affectionately known as Johnny or JC. He passed peacefully away Dec 6, 2021 at the age of 76 after a long battle with cancer. Johnny was born Dec 22, 1944 in Dawson Creek B.C. to George and Maureen Chamberlain, their third child. Uncle Johnny never met his father who died in WWII while his Mom was pregnant.

Immediately when we think of Uncle Johnny his incredible love of music and his ability to play by ear on the piano, banjo, guitar, accordion, and even a bit on the harmonica. He never did learn to read music much to his Mom’s dismay. Johnny’s charming grin was utterly contagious along with his wit and sense of humour. He was a man that loved to tease and joke around. His sisters’ remember his calm, gentle and protective spirit, and the utter hellion he was a child. Johnny’s mother had to tie him to the clothesline in order to do chores otherwise he’d run away and she couldn’t catch him. Family and friends were what his world revolved around. He was the man that always reached out to keep connected to his near and far. You could be guaranteed a call to catch up on how you and your family were doing. Than get the low down and stories on the rest on the family. He’d end the call or message with the catch phrase “I didn’t want nothing’ just called to BS, Love you.”

After Johnny was born, he was raised on the Chamberlain farm with his siblings Florence and Bob. Maureen met and married John Cosens, they expanded their family with 6 more children, Carole, Doreen, Pat, Polly, Brian and Steve. When his parents first married they moved into a little house on the Chamberlain homestead and later moved to the Cosen’s homestead.  The kids grew up typical farm kids doing hard work and chores, finishing their days with family dinners followed by music and games. Christmas was a particularly favourite memory with their Mom and Johnny playing carols and everyone sitting on the floor listening.  Johnny trained horses, once when he was training a new team to pull a stone boat and they were not cooperating he slapped them with the reins to get them started. They got going alright, bolting straight into the barn where his Dad was milking the cow, the cow jump into the manger and the bucket was crushed. Needless to say his Dad was less than impressed that day. Uncle Johnny broke horses, a particularly crazy nasty mare bucked him off, lashing out kicking and shattering his femur mid air. This incident took away his lifelong dream of being an RCMP officer. When he graduated his Dad sent him to Fairview College to study agriculture, but he firmly decided farming was not for him.

Johnny’s first job was delivery for the CO-OP grocery store, he always took the time to take the groceries straight in for his little old ladies. Over the years he drove for ESSO, Trimac, R Home supplies, Quintet bus, and logging trucks. He made life long friends everywhere he worked. Johnny had quite the reputation of timing his routes to land at either meal times or on baking days of his favourite cooks among his clients. He was known for his sweet tooth especially butter tarts. A couple of his favourite stories included the time he was delivery fuel to forest fire fighters and the fire had crossed the road and he was surrounded and was making peace his maker. Suddenly it was like the lights had gone out. A water bomber had seen him and dropped their bucket of water over him. He was so relieved until he tried to drive in pure mud – it took all his skills to get out of that one. Another was to wake up to hear screaming over his CB radio to “John, John wake up your hitting the ditch.”  He woke to a windshield full of spruce trees. He bailed out of his cab to land in the dirt with the fellow truckers standing around, laughing uncontrollably- turns out he had pulled over for a nap and the guys had gathered spruce branches and put them all over his windows.

Johnny left the family farm and moved into a basement suite at his eldest sister and husband’s home they shared with their young daughter. Uncle Johnny spent a lot of time with his niece Susan- he was known to play guitar to her when he was supposed to be helping start suppers- it was a common occurrence for Florence to come home to burnt potatoes and house full of smoke with both her brother and daughter completely oblivious.  John loved playing with his bands at the community halls frequently with his Mom. During this time he was a bit of a ladies man. His sister Florence got rather tired of him double booking himself and she would have to answer the door or phone to the jilted woman. One night she was fed up and her husband John said he’d take care of it. My dad ended up booking him solid for the evening giving a fair shot with time between each date. When Dad handed him his schedule Uncle Johnny decided to head for the hills for a few days. No idea if he brought his Brillo cream or Old Spice aftershave with him.

Uncle Johnny met Aunt Marcia in 1975, she had her 2 beautiful daughters Jodi and Stacy who captivated him. Married in 1980, they had a home in Dawson Creek, before they moved out to the Nelson’s homestead. The girl’s lived there until starting their own lives. Little Jon was welcomed into their family in 1984. All of the kids remember music at every gathering with friends, family and out camping – live music was always happening, He never left home without an instrument. There were many nights of card games like hand and foot. John loved being a Dad.  In later years Johnny, Marcia and little Jon moved to their place in Moberly Lake. Johnny fell completely in love with his special place. It was an agonizing decision to sell when his health would no longer let him live so far from healthcare. Johnny loved taking Jon to his activities in Chetwynd and Hudson’s Hope. John continued to live alone at his home after his quadruple bypass.  Johnny loved his dogs over the years, he had Sam, Barney and Brandy. Watching his hummingbirds and squirrels out his front window was his pastime when he wasn’t watching his reality show like, COPS, the Incredible Dr. Pol, Border Patrol, court Cam, National Geographic or his old westerns. Neighbours appreciated when uncle would bomb around on his tractor, tilling their gardens and plowing their driveways. He took particular care of a young mother after her husband passed. He had open door policy and was known for his hospitality as long as you did the cooking especially breakfast. A neat nick he was not, you could walk into him splitting wood in his dining or living room with his electric splitter. You never what you might find in regards to food lying around, but guaranteed you’d find Orange crush, grape soda and root beer. Excursions into to Chetwynd almost always ended with a little A& W. His love of A&W continued when he moved back to Dawson Creek becoming almost a daily habit. He would light up when you’d visit and bring him his ice cap. Even when his health started to slow him down his sense of humour never dwindled. When he was in Vancouver receiving radiation treatment and staying in the Cancer Lodge he’d shine a flashlight under his sheets causing a green glow –he’d tell his roommate that he figured they gave him too much radiation that day. Even in his last days his nurses enjoyed his charm and jokes.  When he hadn’t seen you for a bit he’d greet you with there is my favourite (insert child, sister, brother, niece nephew)- this would land him in the hot seat at gatherings- because you could be sure someone else would pipe up and say but I thought I was your favourite- he’d look down and laugh. He even got caught out with his nurses doing this- so he’d duck under his covers and laugh instead.

John was predeceased by his Father George, Mom Maureen, Dad John, sister Florence and brothers Bob and Brian. He is survived by his children Jodi (Rex) and their children Shane, Alicia, Cole and all their children. His daughter Stacy (Carl) and their girls Jesse and Tara. Jon and his children Christian, Dominque, Meiranna and Stevie-jo. His siblings Carole (Ron), Doreen, Pat, Polly (Cliff) and Steve (Debbie).  3 generations of nieces and nephews and cousins.

I think we will all miss those random phone calls to catch up, that grin that would light up a room and the gentle teasing that was sure to follow. Johnny was a kind, generous and gentle soul.

A private family service will be held with interment to follow at a later date.  For friends so wishing, donations may be made in memory of John to the SPCA South Peace Branch, 11418 3rd Street, Dawson Creek, BC V1G 4L5, Canada.

Very Respectfully, Reynars Funeral Home & Crematorium

A Memorial Tree was planted for John
We are deeply sorry for your loss ~ the staff at Reynars Funeral Home & Crematorium
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