Fun-loving, free-spirited, outdoor, family man!
Ronald Kennedy (aka Red, Bucko, Popa, Mr. Tinker) was a loving, compassionate, and strong man who cared deeply for his family and friends! His non-judgmental and accepting attitude enabled him to befriend everyone and build sincere relationships with people from all walks of life! Ron freely helped strangers and was always there for family and friends!
He loved to have fun and make others laugh and truly enjoyed joking around with family and friends! A mischievous grin and sparkling blue eyes were always the first indicators that he was ready to 'let the fun begin'.
Ron's favorite things included: picking and drying rosehips and learning about the newest trends in health foods, long bike rides, cutting firewood, bottle picking (one of the first environmentalists!), walking the dogs and Snowy the cat, spending time at the lake, driving and fixing cars (Austin, Olds, Classic Fords...), vans (loved his Fargo), motorbikes (Indian was his fave), scooters, bikes and his favorite small trucks, having coffee with family and friends anytime of the day or evening, tinkering with radios, TV's and electronics, eating dessert, playing guitar and singing country and christian music and most important hanging out with loved ones. In his younger days, Bucko ran, swam, hunted, skated (for hours at a time on the Chapman Camp outdoor rink with his siblings), skied (even making his own skis - likely a result of having to share one set of skis and boots with his brothers!)
A curious mind and a lifelong desire to learn lead Ron to complete many certificates, diplomas and courses in a broad range of areas, such as, theology, computer science, electronics, security, auctioneering and even culinary arts (thanks Auntie Shirls for letting us all know about this additional interest - we would have never guessed because his favorite staple was peanut butter and toast and he had a knack for burning liver, so much so that his kids affectionately named it leather dinner, when he would cook for the family)!
Ron had an entrepreneurial spirit and started multiple small businesses throughout his lifetime. Red's TV Repairs, Key City Electronics, Security Patrol (with Uncle Burdel - aka Birdie), Second Hand Store/Auction Hall. In his early adulthood he worked for Parks Canada, CP Rail and was the local Watkins and Fuller Brush dealer and also sold Raleighs, Rainbow Vaccuums, Amway and Amsoil.
Ron's family invites all who have stories, condolences, pictures or thoughts to share your memories and contribute to this site in loving memory of a great man! ~:)
The best and most beautiful things in the world cannot be seen or even touched - they must be felt with the heart. ~Helen Keller
Ron and next brother Al bought a 1934 Ford 2 door car with suicide doors, together for $50 from a family friend. The boys used to drive through the local woods (now the lower Chapman Camp neighbourhood) on a path they had made using the neighbour’s little “cat”. One night the 3 brothers and a neighbour friend were out driving through the woods in their cars. One of the cars got a flat tire. Ron and younger brother Al came back to their Dad’s garage to get a tire jack. In a hurry, Ron forgot that he had closed the window on the car and threw the jack in, breaking the side window. Ron had already smashed a fender on the car. Needless to say, brother Al said that’s enough and gave Ron a transistor radio and said that was it, Ron’s half of the car was paid off. Al kept that car for decades.
Ron’s interest in electronics started early. There were wires for antennae strung throughout the large trees close to the house. One of the trees came down in summer of 2013, and the ladder to climb the tree was still nailed on.
Ron loved old bikes as a teenager. He had an old Indian motorcycle, a Norton motorcycle, a Honda motor scooter. His love of motorized vehicles didn’t end with motor bikes, he carried on and had a vast assortment of cars to fix and tune up as well.
Ron loved to take things apart. According to younger brother Al (deceased), there was a time Ron did a bike overhaul and put it back together. A few nuts and bolts were left over. The bike ran, but when he took it for a ride he had no brakes!
Another time he took younger brother John for a ride and returning from Wycliffe, Ron hit gravel and fishtailed all over the place. Fortunately there was no accident.
Ron’s Dad (Curly) would let the boys use his guns for hunting. Ron took younger brother John hunting up the “Mill Hill” close to the house with Curly’s Winchester30-30. The great young hunters shot a buck deer. Ron knew enough to do a basic gutting job, and with a bit of trussing and ingenuity , the deer’s hooves were tied over a pole and brought home. Venison, deer and elk meat were an important part of our diet as was produce from the gardens. The three boys spent many hours hoeing potatoes. As well, there would be many trips to Creston for berry and fruit picking. All five, six or seven kids would pile into Dad’s Model T Ford, the baby on Mom’s lap, and much grousing, complaining and jockeying for a comfortable position went on in the back seat.
Ron would go hunting with his Dad, Curly. See the photo of Ron and his Dad.
There was no TV in those days so entertainment was self made. Daily games were Kick the Can, and Ali Ali Oxen Free, (throwing a ball over the roof and someone on other side had to catch the ball then run to the other side and catch someone with the ball. ) And of course, we cannot forget the stilts, the fabulous stilts!. All 3 brothers would go and cut poplar poles and make stilts, nailing a piece of 2 x 4 on them for footholds, and walk around on them. Endless self made fun.
Bows and arrows were made of willow branches, using string for the bow. There was a tree house across the road which provided tons of entertainment. In the same area, the boys would dig in the clay hill and make tunnels.
The boys would go up the local Mill Hill to get Christmas trees, cut them and bring them home on a sleigh, treading through the snow. Curly and his buddy, Jim Soden, would take deer hooves and make tracks in the snow so the kids would have extra evidence of Santa and his reindeer.
One year family friends bought hockey sticks for the boys and countless games of shinny ensued on our street. With only one pair of skis between three brothers, turns had to be taken. Ron made his own using boards with springs and rope to tie the “skis” to his boots. Many times skiing was done in the moonlight as the hill next door would be icy and therefore faster. The boys made a ski jump as well for more thrills.
In early years the house was under construction and Ron and his next brother Al would sleep in the porch all bundled up, in cold weather. The upstairs wasn’t finished yet. Once Curly finished the second floor, all three boys shared a bedroom, with much grumbling and many times fights ensuing. Something we can laugh about now.
Ron loved to play guitar, he had an early start with music. Sunday mornings Ron would strum on the guitar with his Dad and 2 brothers while the gals made breakfast in the kitchen after church. Mom loved music and always encouraged his music making.
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