February 26, 1942 – January 2, 2019
We are sad to announce the passing of Gerhardus “Gerry” Klappe, age 76, on Jan. 2 2019, after a short battle with cancer. Gerry is survived by Lenora, his loving wife of 52 years, son Arnold of Surrey, BC, daughter Yvonne English, son-in-law Jason and his two perfect grandchildren, Dylan and Addyson of Calgary, his sister Magda Ahl and brother Tony Klappe. Gerry was predeceased by his brother Robert and sisters Irma Packbiers and Heddy Smeets.
Gerry was born in Amersfoort, the Netherlands and lived there until 1954 when his family immigrated to Canada, settling in Calgary. At age 16, his desire for travel saw him working on the CPR Rockies run then around the world working on cargo ships. Upon returning to Calgary, he completed his apprenticeship as a Residential/Commercial painter and made his way to Powell River, BC, where in 1965, he met Lenora.
In 1967 they moved to Port Moody, built their first home and welcomed their son Arnold and daughter Yvonne. In 1974 the family moved to 100 Mile House, where they built their second and third homes. During his time in the Cariboo, Gerry earned his private pilot’s license, established a successful painting business and even ran a restaurant for 5 years. Gerry was very active in the Rotary and Flying Clubs.
In 1987, Gerry and Lenora moved to Penticton and built their fourth home. Gerry continued his painting business until 2002 when he officially ‘hung up’ his brushes. Gerry was again active in the community as a member and President of both the Gyro and Flying Clubs. In 2005, Lenora joined him in retirement and the two of them kicked their existing “travel bugs” into high gear. They traveled to many countries sharing amazing experiences and creating memories. In April of this year, Gerry reached his goal of 80 different countries. His favourite country was Peru, a place he visited over 10 times.
The family would like to thank their friends for their selfless support, the Interior Health Palliative Program and the doctors and nurses at the Kelowna Cancer Clinic for their knowledge and care during his battle with cancer and during his final days.
A celebration of Gerry’s life will be held at a later date. In lieu of flowers, donations to the SMILE Operation (www.operationsmile.ca), an organization Gerry supported or to the Penticton Hospital Fund (www.sosmedicalfoundation.com) would be greatly appreciated.