Bruce Douglas Cottrell
October 13, 1955 – August 7, 2009
It is with heartfelt sadness that we announce the passing of our deeply loved and much adored husband and father, Bruce Cottrell. In his passing, Bruce leaves behind his wife and best friend, Peggy and his pride and joy, daughters Lisa and Sheri. Along with his three girls, Bruce’s love, laughter and energy will be missed by his brother Bill, many friends and his extended family, the Zumkellers and his Kiwi cousins. Although he leaves much behind, he is once again with his twin brother Brad whose side he was at when he passed away five years ago.
Bruce was born in Chilliwack in 1955 and raised in Coquitlam, BC. Growing up, Bruce spent his summers in Savona with his Nanny and Bopa swimming and fishing in Kamloops Lake while causing much mischief with his brothers. As a young man, Bruce enjoyed being an Army Cadet until he decided he wanted to grow his hair long. At 18, Bruce moved to Hope to work as a surveyor for the government and for the next 7 years worked all over the province building roads, subdivisions and mines.
In 1980, Bruce moved to Campbell River to work on the construction of the No. 5 paper machine. Here he met many of the people who were to become his best friends and was introduced to the love of his life, Peggy. They were married May 5, 1984 and traveled through Europe together visiting family in Germany and falling in love with Greece. Together with his new in-laws, Bruce built the Royal Coachman Pub while Lisa was born in 1986 and Sheri in 1987. In 1988, he started his own business, Western Survey Service, working over the years up and down the island on pulp mills, highways, bridges, mountains and mines. In the winter, Bruce couldn’t wait to drive truck down the West Coast delivering fruit and vegetables as far south as Arizona. He loved the feel of the warm sunshine on his face and the open road under his tires however it was never long before he headed home again because he missed his girls. Bruce took great advantage of everything Campbell River had to offer, skiing, hiking, canoeing, playing flag-football, scuba diving, waterskiing and spending summers at the lake with his family.
Bruce had a personality that filled a room. Wherever he went, it wasn’t long before everyone was crowded around him listening to one of his famous stories. With Bruce came an energy that was hard to ignore and brought a smile to everyone’s face. With his loveable nature, magnetic personality and urge to share no one was ever a stranger to Bruce but a friend he hadn’t yet made. Bruce was an encouraging, loving and dedicated husband and father who was always striving to be the best he could be and to do what he thought was best for his family right up until the very end. Being a husband and father was not just what he did, it was who he was. Although he will be forever missed, he lives on in the people he loved the most.
Throughout his journey Bruce was surrounded by wonderful professionals who offered not only their medical expertise but more importantly their friendship, support and humour. For this we cannot thank enough Dr. Mahoney and Dr. Prinsloo, Michelle, Shannon and Pam at North Island Liver Service, his family of nurses at Medical Daycare, Barb, Diane, Maria, Beth, and Jen, and the staff of 3 North.
A celebration of Bruce’s life will be held on Wednesday August 19th 2009 at Sequoia Springs at 2pm. It was Bruce’s request that, in lieu of flowers, donations be made to Medical Daycare care of the Campbell River Hospital Foundation.