John  Wagar
John  Wagar

Obituary of John Wagar

It is with heavy hearts that we announce the passing of John Wagar, long time resident of Bonanza, Alberta, on Monday, February 7, 2022, at the age of 79 years.  A Celebration Of Life will be held at Reynars Funeral Chapel on Tuesday, February 22, 2022 at 1:00PM.  Pauline Haycock will officiate.  Interment will take place at a later date.  For friends so wishing, donations may be made in memory of John to the Chetwynd Veterinary Hospital, PO Box 1140, Chetwynd, BC V0C 1J0, or donations may be sent by etransfer to

John Benjamin Wagar, commonly known as “John” or “Big John”, was born in Bluffton, Alberta, on May 13, 1942. John was the youngest child of Frazor Russel Dyer Wagar and Alice Florence Meaver.


John was a hard worker who had many jobs over the years. He was a truck driver, heavy equipment operator, foreman for paving crews, and more. When I met John, he was a truck driver with Alberta, British Columbia, and Saskatchewan running rights. After that he hauled meat to Edmonton and Calgary grocery stores for French Transport in Red Deer. We moved around a lot in those years and lived in a converted school bus, holiday trailer or motor home. John worked at Quintette Coal for 10 years as a hoe operator until the mine shut down.


We bought a building that used to be a sheep barn and moved it onto what was then Frank Wagar’s property. We fixed it all up and made it into a house, but it burned to the ground in 1984. We lost pretty much everything. Later that year our son, Darwyn, was born. It took John awhile to get used to us not being able to travel as much as we used to.


We bought a house in Dawson Creek and lived there for some time. John got a job as a water hauler for oil rigs, and he found the job very much to his liking. John enjoyed fishing, especially in the ocean. He also liked hunting, camping, and swimming. Playing crib was a good pastime as well as watching Calgary Flames hockey games.


John liked to help people if he came across someone having a hard time or stuck somewhere or broken down. He had a leather wrap around case where he kept wrenches and tools. He seldom went anywhere without it.


We bought a quarter section in Bonanza, Alberta in 1995. That kept us busy for some time as there was nothing there, not even a road into the property. John bought a trailer and got power and natural gas hooked up. Then there was a dugout to build and water and sewer lines to prepare. It turned out a huge job but eventually we got it done.


In the year 2000, a house came up for sale to be moved. The house was in Doe River which meant hauling the house through the river as it would not fit over the bridge. With the help of Mr. Stobey, the truckdriver and the use of John’s 5020 tractor that all turned out well. John was very good at planning what would work well. He got busy digging a small basement for the pilings to be installed and water and sewer lines dug into place. Then he hired Russel Warn to build partial walls and a floor for the furnace and hot water heater and wood burning stove to sit on. Then Mr. Stobey moved the house onto the piling and Russel skirted it in.


John bought his own water truck and shack and worked for Lakota 6 drilling rig until he retired. After John retired, he started having a lot of health issues which eventually ended up with him being in long term care.  Darwyn bought his dad a power chair and John really enjoyed riding around in it while he still could.


John was predeceased by his parents Frazor Wagar and Alice Meaver; father-in-law Warren Haney; mother-in-law Ella Haney; brothers Gilbert (Mabel), Charlie (Laura) and Glen; sisters Bernice (Ray) Peterson, Leona Schweiger (Sam Michalski), and Doreen (Rudy) Mayer; and nephews Walter Wagar, Ronnie Wagar, Ken Peterson, Stan Schweiger, and Alvin Wagar.


John is survived by his wife Lila Wagar; son Darwyn Wagar; daughters Rose Pawlick, Cindy Lewis, and Karen Tinie Bruno; brother Frank Wagar; sibling in-laws Brent Haney, Marvyn Haney, Elaine Haney, Avril Gerun, and Sandra Haney; and many extended family and friends.


Very Respectfully, Reynars Funeral Home and Cremetarium.

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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