WILCOX, Peter Stephen
With the same dignity and grace in which he lived, we had to release our beloved husband and father, Peter Stephen Wilcox on December 1st, 2016 at the age of 64. Peter is survived by his wife Patricia Clare and his son Neal Wilcox, who was often lovingly referred to by Pete, as his life’s “finest work!” Peter was predeceased by his wife Ronise Wilcox (nee Lew), Neal’s mother, and his parents Brian and Lisette Wilcox, brother Michael Wilcox and sweet little sister Josee Wilcox.
Peter is also survived by his siblings Frank Wilcox (Barbara Langmuir), Lisanne Moen (late Stephen), Mariette (Mat) Wilcox as well as a number of nieces, nephews and cousins. When people spoke in Pete’s presence about struggling with family relationships, Peter never missed an opportunity in the middle of a good dinner party to say “I love my family and we all get along!” As his family, we have to say he was pretty easy to get along with. “Sweet Pete” was how we referred to him.
Peter was born in Montreal and spent his early years traveling the world with his family. With 3 fluent languages, through the years, he helped many of us order a beer or a bagel no matter where we had landed. His eloquence, curiosity and heart for adventure made him suited for his years abroad and he had especially fond memories of their moves to Australia and Mexico in his teens and early 20’s. “Pedro” became his nickname and he smiled warmly when you said it. He was a Wikipedia of travel information and loved evenings spent at home with the Atlas out on the kitchen table to plan the next big adventure. Peter loved boating and as we took to islands on our boat, the look on his face of pure joy will be long remembered.
Peter was a news addict…literally! He marveled at the world and the rapid changing state of affairs. From CNN to hourly updates on the radio, he could tell you with precision where the President was on any given day. As a family it was like “Where is Waldo?” so we quizzed him often and he was always correct. As a man of political passion, he was perfect for election years, in that he was patient in explaining the party or candidate differences. Pete was even known to draw a good flow chart if we were not following. With his glasses propped on his nose, sitting at the kitchen table, watching Pete read his newspaper was like witnessing perfection in motion. He made learning and being curious about the world look so good!
Pete was a “car guy!” If you wanted his attention you need to turn on Formula One speedway sounds or hoped that a Ferrari engine sound would go whipping by. He spent his working years predominately in Commercial Truck Managing and Fleet Leasing. Pete loved his years at Ed Klassen and Dueck’s and Freightliner and always enjoyed sideline entrepreneurial plights with his father along the way. They had owned the heritage “Ridge Theatre” in the early 80’s and still to recent days, getting Pete to eat popcorn was virtually impossible. “If you saw as much of it on the floor as I did” he would explain, “you would not put it in your mouth!” Fair enough, point taken.
Being a father was Peter’s greatest pride. He said he waited until he was a bit older to have a child to make sure he got it right. He most certainly did! His love for Neal, was and will be, eternal. He would wait until Neal went out the door and say each and every time…. “Isn’t he just the best?” The answer was and always will be “Yes, he is!” Like father, like son, their connection will continue in their hearts! Their kindness and care to others is much to be admired. As a husband, Peter was kind, respectful and delightful. You never had to wonder if he was pleased to see you…he stopped everything to exclaim “There’s my girl!” If I entered the house with lot of bags in hand, he would simply smile and tease “Oh my, what have you done now?” Our happy years as a family were not wasted. Our home was full of friends and family and our yard billowing with laughter and flowers. Thank you, Peter, for always putting away all the garden tools when I took on projects bigger than my day would allow. You would simply come out to yard and take me by the hand and say “That’s enough for one day, my dear!” You were always right. I appreciated when you would wipe the mud out of my hair or off my face, as I was discussing with a neighbor the best way to cross-cut the lawn or to live trap a baby squirrel in trouble. Thank you for understanding we had to rescue all things in distress…even the night you let us sleep with the baby bird in Naramata and helped me to dig worms for him by flashlight in our underwear!
I think Peter summed up his own life the best, when it was bedtime. He would sit on the side of the bed and exclaim speaking in third person to the cat “Pete’s a happy guy!” Thank you, Pete, for shining your happiness on us. It has been a privilege to be loved by you. Please map out where we go next, honey…I’ve never been really that great with directions, but I know you will know the way. Love you always our sweet man! xoxo
Peter’s “Celebration of Life” will he held on Saturday, January 14, 2017 at 2p.m. at St. Mark’s Ocean Park Anglican Church, 12953-20th Ave. Surrey, BC. As expressions of sympathy, donations to the “Canuck Place Children’s Hospice” (canuckplace.org) are gratefully acknowledged in lieu of flowers.