- 84 years old
- Date of birth: Jul 31, 1930
- Date of passing: Sep 19, 2014
|We will remember Rolly forever.|
Rolly was a devoted husband, father, brother, grandfather, great grandfather and friend. He was an intelligent and hard-working man, first a logger and then a long-haul trucker and heavy duty mechanic. He was a handy man extraordinaire, and every project he took on was done to perfection. He was an exceptional mechanic, and took much pride in restoring numerous classic cars. Rolly was an expert driver, winning many safe-driving awards during his years driving transport trucks. Rolly passed on his skills to his grandchildren, whom he taught to drive. He was a faithful supporter of his children and grandchildren's sporting events, attending many baseball and hockey games and tournaments.
His three loves in life were: His family, his old cars, and his Toronto Maple Leafs.
Rolly was fondly nicknamed the "Archie Bunker" of the family by his adoring wife Joyce (Edith), and in the words of his loving daughter Laurene, he was like a good dinner roll - crusty on the outside, but soft in the centre.
One of Rolly's quirks was that he had a nickname for everybody; If he knew you, you had a nickname, whether you knew it or not.
Rolly was a generous and thoughtful man. When a family had no money to pay their Hydro bill, Rolly went to the hydro company and paid the family's hydro bill for the winter. He had a soft spot for the homeless and downtrodden and always offered a hand without expecting anything in return. He gave many of his clothes to the less fortunate and gave food to the local food bank. He was full of gratitude for everything he had in life, always expressing thanks for every meal prepared by his wife. He and his family would join hands at supper and say a prayer every night.
Rolly loved his four-legged friends, and treated them like his own children. He especially loved Janie, a brindel daschund, which he and Joyce adopted from California. Janie had been abused and crated by her previous owners. She was welcomed into the Ritchey family with open arms, and she stole Rolly's heart. He also loved to sit and watch the birds outside of his window on a sunny day.
Rolly was the fourth child of seven children, and was born in Lethbridge, Alberta on July 31, 1930. His family moved many, many, many times, but finally settled in Kelowna, BC in 1938. Roland married the love of his life, Joyce Jones, in 1955. They moved to Ontario in 1960 and raised their children Laurene and Darcy in Oshawa.
Rolly and Joyce retured to Kelowna in 1986 to enjoy his retirement years in "God's Country".
Rolly was extremely proud of his grandchildren and great grandchildren and all of their accomplishments. He adored his grandchildren Curt, Alexi, Ted, Darci and Alana; and great grandchildren Logan, Lucas, Chelsea, Dryden, Ronin and Griffin. He was always interested to see how his great grandchildren were doing and what activities they were involved in. He even attended several of his great grandchildren's hockey games despite his declining health.
For many years, Rolly suffered with Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD), a lung disease which made breathing very difficult. He fought a long hard, battle valiantly with help of his Angels, Joyce and Laurene. Rolly succumbed to his illness on September 19, 2014 at the age of 84 with his family at his side.
Instead of a funeral, the family has decided to organize a Celebration of Life in Kelowna next summer. Please check this site in the coming months for information on the date and time.
In lieu of flowers you could assist one of the charities below that meant so much to Rolly:
· Donate or rescue a dog in Rolly's memory: http://oksmalldog.com/fundraisers/
· Help someone in Rolly's community: http://www.innfromthecoldkelowna.org/
· Donate and learn about COPD and lung disease: http://www.lung.ca/donate-don/index_e.php
"Dear Uncle Rolly, I am thinking of you today on your birthday. An even more special day to me and our family because you share it with our brother Rolly! Looking forward to that sweet "Bye and Bye" when the entire family can celebrate your birthday together with you!"
"Dear Uncle Rolly! Although I did not get to see him often, my heart still misses him. I can't imagine how much you, Auntie Joyce, Laurene and Darcy, must grieve his loss. I pray that you will find happy memories (Loved his humour and that twinkle in his eye!), peace, comfort and courage today and going forward. Hugs."
"My mom loved her brother Roland and named her son after him!"
"Grandpa it's hard to believe a year has come and gone. We still miss your beautiful smile and tender heart now and forever.
Love Anita, Darci and Alana"
"Thinking of Uncle today and all of you. I am sure it feels like yesterday. More time is needed probably before the pain becomes more tolerable. He loved you all and would want you to be happy and that would be a wonderful way to honour his memory. Xxxxxxooooo"
"It is hard to believe that it has been a year since Rolly was called to Heaven. He will never be gone, because he will forever remain in the hearts of those who loved him."
"We miss you lots Grandpa! Happy 85th with much love from Anita, Darci Janel and Alana."
"We miss you Rollo! Happy birthday. We are sending you a big ice cream cake with 85 candles. Sending hugs and kisses to Lo Lo and Ms Joyce today! Xxooooo. Bobby Jo, Gabriella and Boots. Love you!"
"A limb has fallen from your family tree,
Hear his voice that says, "Grieve not for me."
Remember the best times, the laughter, the song,
The good life he lived while he was strong.
Continue to remember, he's counting on you,
Keep smiling and let the memories shine through.
His body is at ease, my soul is at rest,
Remembering how truly he was blessed.
Continue traditions, no matter how small,
Go on with your life knowing how much he loved you all.
Rolly was a very special man. It was a privilege and pleasure to have share some of Life's Journey with him. Now, can he please help those poor Leafs!!!!"
"Dear Joyce and Family, Thank you so much for making my mother Marie (Mary Lou), my niece Brianne (wiz kid with the scissors) and my sister Lori (who always finds time for everyone) such a warm part of your family. Roley will be thought of often and fondly and will always be a part of our lives."
"Grandpa was a wonderful man, every ready with a joke, always laughing. I'll always remember the countless hockey and baseball games he cheered us on. We'll miss you Grandpa.
Love Ted Griffin"
"Dear Auntie Joyce...Here we are watching the Gaither Gospel Hour tonight...thinking of you, there with Janie, and watching it too...for the first time without Uncle Rolly...Our hearts ache with you and for you and Laurene and Darcy for the loss of dear Uncle Rolly...we look forward to seeing him again, when he won't need his oxygen, he won't need his meds, he won't need a walker. He'll be good as new and maybe it will be in Heaven that the Maple Leafs will win the Stanley Cup...finally! xoxoxo"
"Rolly Ritchey was always so good to Carl and I when we would be there to visit. Even when he was so ill he would always put on a good front and ask Joyce to pour a little rye for Ghindi and him...I will always remember the devotion and loving care Joyce, Laurene and Darcy gave Rolly. He is at peace now, no more suffering. Have a good flight.
Love, Boots (slippers)"
"Words cannot express the love I had for my brother Rolly and how much I will miss him. Besides being a very close brother he was always my true and dependable friend; on many occasions providing advice and help to get through some troublesome times. His brotherly love will accompany me through out my life. Love, Carl (ghindi)"
"Dear Family and Loved Ones, Perhaps no words can truly give comfort to any of us at such a time of loss. Uncle Roland was loved by so many and maybe knowing that we all can understand and share the pain and it will help. He is in our thoughts and hearts and would not want his loved ones to hurt. I was blessed to have him in my life since childhood. He was not only a fantastic Uncle but a second Father to me also. I will never forget the so many Saturday evenings hearing the theme song and "Hockey Night In Canada" coming across the television. It was my second home. I can only hope that time will help ease the pain. It is always so very difficult to see our loved ones suffer and then the continuing of it for the ones left behind. I hope that the love and support you all receive will help you at least in a small way. Love you all so much."
"Dear Nanny and Auntie Laurene
Grandpa could not have had better loving care than you two gave him over the last few years. You did all the right things and were there for him 24/7. We will miss him greatly but we are happy he is with the angels and is no longer suffering. We are here for you any time with broad shoulders for you to lean on.
We love you very much.
Darci Janel and Anita"
"Our family is going to miss "Rollo". We will always remember Rolly's quick sense of humour and warm smiling face. Darcy your in charge of the tree of "Rollo", we look forward to it every Christmas! Your family has been a bright light for us to visit over the many years. Rolly will walk with you for the rest of your life. As you look up to the sky you will see him smiling and winking at you. Please know Mrs. Joyce and Laurene we are here for you should you need a friend. Allow yourselves time to grieve, tears can heal the soul. We love you and feel your sadness. We love you!"
"Passing away is not dying. People die only when we forget them. To live in the hearts we leave behind is never to die. May Rolly forever remain in the hearts of his loving wife Joyce, his adored children Laurene and Darcy, his grandchildren and their families, his beloved Jannie and all those who had the pleasure of sharing a part of their life's journey with such a wonderful man."
"Dear Auntie Joyce, Laurene and Darcy, our thoughts and prayers are with you.
Uncle Rolly touched us all, even those of us that didn't get to see him as much as I wish we had.
Rest knowing that he's in some good company now.
Love Dale, Pam and Douglas Jones"
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