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SKJONSBY, Lewellyn “Lew” Dean

August 29, 1960– Prince George, BC
May 18, 2014 – Calgary, AB

Lewellyn “Lew” Dean Skjonsby of Calgary, passed away due to heart complications on Sunday, May 18, 2014 at the age of 53 years.

Lew’s career as a Health Inspector with the Alberta Health Services stretched some twenty-eight years, many of which were in Stettler, Lac La Biche, and Vegreville, and most recently, Calgary. For several years, he was involved with the Kinsmen charities, and performed as the merry Santa at Christmas at many of their functions. Lew was affectionately known as Big Lew to family and friends. He had an infectious laugh, quick wit and a giving heart. He was our ‘go to guy’ for all hockey and football data and scores. He was loved deeply and will be greatly missed.

Lew is survived by his sister Lynn (Jim) O’Neill of Perth, Australia and a brother Lowell (Wendy) Skjonsby of Cranbrook, BC, and many nieces, nephews, aunts and an uncle. He was predeceased by his parents Howard (1993) and Madeline (2008).

His cremated remains will be taken to Saskatchewan to be interred with his Mom and Dad. Forward condolences through www.mcinnisandholloway.com.

In living memory of Lew Skjonsby, a tree will be planted at Fish Creek Provincial Park by McINNIS & HOLLOWAY FUNERAL HOMES, Fish Creek Chapel, 14441 BANNISTER ROAD S.E. Telephone: (403) 256-9575.

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Condolence Messages

  1. Vicki Wearmouth :

    I would like to extend my sincere condolences to Lew’s family. Lew and I worked together with Alberta Health Services in Calgary for the past several years. We also had some crazy golf games that were worthy of story telling. I admired the way he looked after his mom. I was sad to hear of his passing – way too young. RIP Lew.

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  2. Jacquie Schnider :

    I have known Lew since 1987. He was in Lac La Biche when I was at Grande Prairie. He had passion for Public Health. He learned all he could about the areas he was involved in whether it was blue-green algae, pulp mills or landfills.
    He spoke very fondly about his time with the Kinsmen. I was in Calgary when he started in Public Health here. He worked very hard to help tenants in our housing department. Lew loved his family and often spoke of the various members and his time with you all.
    I will miss his passion for the art and science of Public Health. My sympathy to all his friends and family.

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  3. Melissa Carruthers :

    I would like to extend my deepest sympathy to Lew’s family.
    I am a health inspector in Calgary and worked along side Lew during last summer’s flood in High River.
    He will be greatly missed here in the Calgary team.
    Best wishes,
    Melissa

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  4. Warren Boychuk :

    Lew was one of the good guys. He could make a person laugh with a crack of a joke or with a quick-witted comment, bring down a house of many with laughter . Lew provided Alberta with many dedicated years of professional service as a Public Health Inspector and voluntary service as a Kinsmen. The communities he served in are better places because of Lew.
    Rest in peace, Big Lew….
    Warren Boychuk

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  5. Ivan Rukavina :

    Rest in peace, Lew. You were a good friend. My condolences to Lew’s family and those close to him.

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  6. Marilyn Dahlgren :

    My thoughts and prayers go out to Lew’s family. I am a PHI in Whitecourt now but met Lew when he worked in Lac La Biche and I was in High Prairie. He was a big guy with a big heart. Lew would have many stories and lots of times I would be in tears laughing so hard. I have some great memories of him and our mutual friend Brenda. He will be truly missed by his colleagues and friends.
    RIP Lew. We know you will be telling your stories and have everyone smiling! Take care Big Lew!!

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  7. Sherry Poirier :

    My sincere condolences to Lew’s family. Big Lou and his suburlou was a dear dear friend of mine in LLB in the eighties. He was my neighbor, a colleague at the health unit, a great friend and at times a brother to me. We shared great meals, great music , great debates and great times. His memory and laughter have signed my heart. RIP ‘ole friend…RIP. xoxo Sherry Poirier (Clarke)

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  8. Dan Ferguson :

    It is with great sadness that I learned of Lew’s passing. My sincere condolences to his family and friends. I met Lew in the late 80’s when he was inspecting in Lac La Biche and I was in Bonnyville. We also had a connection via Senior Men’s hockey at the time. Lew was always a fun, sharp-tongued character and he will be dearly missed by all that knew him. Rest in Peace my friend.

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  9. Leandre bastarache :

    I am so so sorry to hear about my friend’s death. I am shocked to hear that. We spent many,many times together.I will miss him for the rest of my life. I would like to offer my condolence to the family. May god bless his soul.

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  10. Thomas Lett :

    I played ball with big Lew, he played first base and you could not ask for a better teamate. He was health inspector for the Athabasca Health Unit when I was chairman of the Board of Govenorsa and he did his job with professionalism and dignity. Rip Lew you left the world a better place.

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  11. Anne Lastiwka :

    I was saddened to hear of Lew’s passing. We were neighbours and good friends when we both lived in Lac La Biche. His infectious laugh brought a smile to so many. RIP.

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  12. Lois Wiberg :

    I would like to offer my deepest condolences to Lew’s family, friends and his work colleagues in the Calgary office. I worked with Lew in Vegreville, Alberta from April 1992 through to August 2002. Lew was indeed quick witted and had a great sense of humour. Often he would say what others may have only thought which resulted in lots of hilarious moments in the Veg office. Many memories but I recall the two years Lew worked on public health issues related to the Ryley Hazardous Waste Site – for his birthday that year staff made him a cake that looked like the hazardous waste site. When my daughter was small and we were at the health unit, Lew would always toss her a loonie to get chips in the coffee room.Lew donated countless hours and served on the Executive of the Kinsmen Club in Vegreville. Lew’s contributions to public health and his community will not be forgotten.
    Sincere condolences,
    Lois Wiberg

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  13. Della Magnusson :

    It is with a heavy heart that I learned of Lew’s passing. In the late 80’s Lew was my neighbour and friend. There were many of us who were young and starting our careers and it did not take long for all of us to develop close friendships. Friendships that created a bond of family for which Lew had no trouble fulfilling both roles; good friend and family. I had kept in touch with Lew when I told him I went back to school to be a nurse practitioner and later what should arrive in my mail but several newspaper articles supporting the new role I had chosen. That was Lew! Lew had a gentle kindness and a always had a way to make you smile. My sincere condolences to Lew’s family. Rest in peace my friend. Della Magnusson

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  14. Darren Barber :

    I was so incredibly sad to hear of Lew’s passing. My sincere condolences to all of his family and many many friends.

    I met “Big Lew” as a student Public Health Inspector in 1991 in Vegreville. Lew was a mentor and friend and spent many hours quizzing me and sharing has depth of knowledge as “we” prepared for the certification exam. I owe Lew a great deal.

    God speed friend and thank you.

    Darren.

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  15. mabel larsen :

    Lynn ,am so sorry to hear of Lew’s passing. What a shock for all of you. That is far too young. My condolence’s to you ,Jim , Lowell and familie’s. Love, Mabel and Aunt Aurilla.

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  16. Wanda Jones :

    Lynn,
    We were shocked and saddened to hear of Lew’s sudden passing. Our condolences to your families. Hope to see you when you come out this way in July.

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  17. I would like to offer my deepest condolence to Lew’s family. Lew was a good friend, a mentor and a wonderful colleague. There is no amount of words that can quantify how much I learned from Lew in the housing department, I will miss you Lew. May the almighty GOD bless your soul rest in peace.

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  18. Frances Fong :

    I was shocked and saddened to hear of Lew’s passing. I worked with Lew from 1996 to 2003 at Lakeland Regional Health Authority. He used to call me Frannie; (it’s not common to have your boss call you by your nick name.) I learned a lot from Lew. His sense of humour and laughs were legendary. He was a dedicated professional and a giving human being. My sincere condolences to Lew’s family.
    Frannie

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  19. Bonnie Litwin :

    Staff that knew Lew when he worked in Vegreville were very shocked and saddened to hear of his passing. He certainly was an interesting character and added lots of spice to the office. He was an encloypedia of information on many subjects. I remember all the staff kids Christmas Parties when he was Santa and so many of the kiddies were so impressed that he actually knew their names. He frequently brought in butter tarts that his Mom made.
    Our condolesences to his family and friends.

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  20. Debbie and Jacques du Toit :

    We were so sad to hear of Lew’s passing. We also knew Big Lew in the ’80’s in Lac la Biche. We attended many parties together and had many wonderful conversations. Lew knew something about EVERYTHING! He was a very intelligent guy! And he had a huge heart! He always looked out for Della, Elaine, Sherry, Anne and I. We were all a big family and I have so many fond memories of our times together with Lew. RIP my friend. The world was a better place with you in it.
    Debbie and Jacques du Toit ( Smith )

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  21. Delee Perkins Tholenaer :

    I was saddened to hear of Lew’s passing. I’ve known the big guy since grade 7 and we had a lot of great times. We went to a movie a while ago and it was just like old times. My condolences to all the family.
    Delee

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  22. Sad news shared today, thank you Delee for letting us know of Lew’s passing. We had all recently reconnected thanks to Facebook with the gang from Woodman Jr High. You were loved and cared for. RIP Lew

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  23. Brenda "Bill" Huggons (Young) :

    Too soon Lew
    Together we shared many a mile of Alberta countryside from Ft Mac to Peace River, Brooks to Banff. He taught me how to Catch a Rabbit and shoot Hard Eight. Skills for life.

    Lew was a person you could always count on, to stand by you, offer insights or just make you laugh.

    My sincere condolences to the family he was so proud of.

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  24. Shirley Fitzpatrick :

    My deepest condolences to you Lynn, Lowell and families. Although I only saw Lew as a little boy, judging from the many condolences he grew up to be an exceptional person that certainly left his mark on many places and people. What a wonderful tribute to have some say “the world was a better place because….”
    You must be very proud of him.
    May he RIP.

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  25. Elaine Pulfer :

    So sorry to learn of Lew’s passing. That is such a shock for your family to lose him at such a young age. Our sympathies are with you all for your great loss.
    Elaine and Bob Pulfer

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