May 4, 1945 – September 12, 2022
It is with heavy hearts and great sorrow that we announce the passing of Willi Blumke of North Vancouver B.C. on Monday September 12, 2022, at Lion’s Gate Hospital in North Vancouver after a long fight with Parkinson’s disease.
Willi was a well-loved Brother, Uncle, and Friend. Willi is survived by his sisters Lydia Gropp, Irma Abramczyk, brother Walter, sisters-in-law Marilyn, Lena, Melita, and many nieces, nephews, and extended family. He also leaves behind many close friends and coworkers.
Willi came to Canada at a very young age, growing up in Vancouver, BC. He had a lifetime of travels and stories, being a Mariner, his voyage was continuous. Needless to say, many of those stories were more of a “yarn” for those that knew him. Willi sailed the Great Lakes on what he referred to as the Banana Boats- down to Mexico and South America.
He also travelled the Panama Canal. Most of his career was spent here on the West Coast of B.C. where he sailed as an Able-Bodied Seaman-Mate-Skipper. Soon after taking on Skippers duties, he decided the Mates job was a better fit for him (probably less paperwork). He was a Union member, starting with the S.I.U and then many more years with the C.M.S.G. working respectively with the C.B.R.T and I.L.W.U. also.
He was a mentor and teacher to many. His career spanned over 50yrs. Willi was a gentle soul that loved going for walks, swimming, and spending time with family. He had a love for dogs, bringing them treats whenever he visited. Over the last 20yrs, Willi travelled to and from Florida where he enjoyed time with his companion, Emma and her family. He also loved nature and Food (especially if it was cooked by someone else) We all wish him the best on his final Sailing where he will no longer have to fight the Elements. (Willi always said he had to fight the elements when he went to Sea)
He will be sadly missed.