Jerry Lafond

Obituary of Jerry Lafond

It is with heavy hearts that we announce the passing of Jerry Lafond, a lifelong resident of Dawson Creek, British Columbia, on April 23, 2022, at the age of 77 years. 

     Summarizing a life is such a challenging task, especially when a life is as well lived as Jerry’s.

     Born August 21, 1944, little Jerry was the pride and joy of his parents. Joe and Irene were hard working, proud people, and they installed those traits into their little boy. Jerry grew up with a “can do” attitude. He loved a challenge and was always filled with curiosity. One of his favorite stories to tell was that of the Soapbox Derby Race Car he built at the age of nine. It was the first of many wins to come.

     Jerry was big brother to Paula, then to Maurice, who Jerry was always proud to say he named, after a hockey player, of course. Dad started his lengthy and illustrious hockey career at the age of 11. After his years of local teams, he moved to Edmonton at the age of 17. He was offered a hockey scholarship at the University of North Dakota in 1963. Because he didn’t have enough going on, Jerry also threw a wedding and a baby into the mix.

     Jerry married Judi in 1965, and they soon welcomed tiny Tracy. We got to hear all the stories about the single dorm life with a ham under the bed for a snack, and then how their living space was upgraded once they moved to the married dorms. I think the term, “upgrade,” may have been a stretch.

     In 1967, Jerry was named to the All-American Team while graduating with a business degree. This was a pretty major achievement. He still holds the record for most goals scored by a defenseman. ’67 was a big year. He was also signed to play pro hockey in the Providence, Rhode Island. Three weeks ago, the scout that signed Jerry onto the team gave him a call to reminisce. After 55 years, these two were remembering scores of games and names of players on the teams. To say these years were impactful is a big understatement.

     Jerry moved to play in Denver in 1969, then eventually home to Dawson Creek in 1970, where his hockey continued with the Canucks and the addition of Nikki to the family. When Nikki was brand new, the family moved to the beautiful home that Jerry hand built. In all the years, there was very little that Jerry couldn’t do, or wouldn’t do. His curiosity always helped him to learn and figure out how to do things himself.

     He played many different roles at Lawrence Meat Packing. His work was something he took so much pride in. The family business is a reflection of commitment to quality and the years of hard work that was put into making it what it has become. When there were a few minutes to escape checking on smokehouses, or moving hams, the weekends were spent at Swan Lake. The whole Lafond side, plus a few extras, would come together to swim, laugh, canoe, sail, and go for green boat rides. Family was always the focus out there, with lots of laughter, and amazing steak dinners. These traditions continue still. The lake is always the meet up spot for sunny weekends.

     Erin eventually showed up in 1978 and Jerry was very outnumbered. That didn’t stop him from teaching all his girls sports. Swimming, skiing, softball, skating, and waterskiing were not optional. You learned it, and you eventually loved it. Jerry pulled off many impressive feats, including waterskiing around the lake with a kid on his shoulders, and swimming across Swan every year on his birthday.

     Travelling was something Jerry loved and eagerly shared with his family. There are amazing memories of Maui, Florida, Mexico, and more. Jerry loved to travel and explore, meeting new people. He cherished the experiences and time spent with his family.

     Jerry continued to work hard for Lawrence Meats. He always wanted to teach people. Sometimes it came across as gruff, but he genuinely wanted to help people learn and grow. In the last few weeks,  He received so many calls, emails, and letters from past employees, friends, and hockey players, sharing how he helped them improve in their own lives.

     In the last chapter of Jerry, a fateful accident led him to the hospital for stitches. While there, he fell head over heels for Cheryl and they quickly became inseparable. He would often brag how he and Cheryl never had an argument. We were pretty sure that is because Cheryl is more tolerant than anyone he is related to. Jerry and Cheryl set off to travel the world. They had the most epic journeys to Europe, Costa Rica, Alaska, fishing boat trips, cross-country in the RV, and a ton of time spent in Arizona. For Jerry, Arizona was filled with great friends, golfing buddies, cheap wine, and his woodshop. There were so many spectacular hikes and laughs shared. They were always off doing something fun, being dancing, chasing wild horses, or flipping 500 burgers on burger night.

     By this time in his life, Jerry was supposed to be retired. He clearly didn’t get the memo and still spent a lot of time at the plant making sure things were done right.

     Family was everything to Jerry. He loved being surrounded by all the grandkids and even his great-grandson. Finally, some boys in the house! These kids will grow up with fond memories of Papa pulling them in tubes, or sometimes trying to launch them off the tubes, splashing in the hot tub, or giving horsey rides.

     Jerry was humble. You’d never know he was a big deal if you asked him. He just worked hard, did his best, and kept going. Jerry was kind. He said, “hello,” to strangers he passed and held open doors. He treated millionaires and fishermen with the same level of respect. He always made sure you felt welcome. Jerry was his own legend. He kind of lived three very different lives and made the best out of each one. He learned from his mistakes and passed those lessons on to those that could learn from them.

     Jerry filled his life with living, our hearts with love, our souls with adventure and experience, and our minds with wisdom.

     We will miss you forever.

A Funeral Service will be held for Jerry at the Notre Dame Church on Thursday, April 28, 2022, at 1:00 pm. Father Vener Sabacan will officiate. Internment to follow in the Brookside Cemetery. For friends so wishing, donations may be made in memory of Jerry to a charity of your choice.

Very Respectfully, Reynars Funeral Home & Crematorium

A Memorial Tree was planted for Jerry
We are deeply sorry for your loss ~ the staff at Reynars Funeral Home & Crematorium
Share Your Memory of