Patrick Ashlee passed away on Saturday, March 31, 2018 at the age of 72 years. Pat was born in St. Paul, AB but soon after his family moved to Dawson Creek, BC where he was raised. Pat was the youngest of five children (Walter, Margaret, Jack and Leonard) born to Charlotte Eunice and John Speiran Ashlee. He loved his parents and as a young man he was deeply affected by their deaths. His wife Doreen was a strong support to him during this time and he appreciated the strength their relationship brought him. He leaves behind Doreen, his loving wife of 46 years; sons Sean (Heather) and Morgan; daughter Lana (Jim); grandchildren Zach, Blake and Reese; and brother Leonard. Pat will be remembered fondly by many extended relatives and close friends.
Pat came into this world on St. Patrick's Day and while he may not have been blessed with a pot of gold, he would be the first to say that he found his riches in his family. He was first and foremost a family man. Along with his wife, his kids and grandkids were the most important people in his life. He first became a father in 1966 with the birth of his daughter Lana. He then met and married the love of his life, Doreen, in 1972 and they were blessed with two sons, Sean (born in Lloydminster SK in 1974) and Morgan (born in High Prairie, AB in 1979). Pat couldn't have been happier to gain the title of Grampa; celebrating the births of grandsons, Zach and Blake, and completing the family with the birth of his beautiful granddaughter Reese.
Pat had a generous and loving spirit and this showed itself in many ways. He loved kids and they loved him right back. His grandkids were his greatest accomplishment and most important legacy. He couldn't have been more proud of them and often commented on each grandkid's many positive qualities. Reese inherited his generous and loving spirit, while Zach and Blake were given his gift of language and debate. He and Doreen loved attending Blake and Reese's various sporting events and extracurricular activities and spent many a weekend cheering them on. Pat enjoyed just sitting around and talking with his grandkids, no matter what age they were, often recounting something funny one of them said. Zach thoroughly enjoyed the conversations he shared with his Grampa and loved learning that they shared some similar philosophies on life.
He set out in his adult life following in his father's footsteps to become a plumber; as he would say "a crappy job but someone's gotta do it!" But his real passion was in working with people. He worked in the human services field, serving in many capacities, including Social Worker and Addictions Counsellor. His natural insights about people made him good at his job. His passion to learn how to be even better at his chosen field led him to McMaster University where he earned a Diploma in Addictions Counselling.
He was an intelligent man who had a never ending curiosity and thirst for learning. When he set his mind to something he would dive right in and explore everything he could about it, never afraid to try his hand at creating or inventing something new. This natural curiosity would take him down many interesting paths, enjoying numerous outdoor pursuits including hunting, camping and searching for gold. He also loved exploring his ancestry and spent many hours searching the internet for clues to his family's roots.
Pat, Doreen and the kids shared many adventures over the years, all quite willing to hop in the car and see where the road would take them (more often than not they would find themselves visiting family or many of their numerous friends). Those same people would end up reciprocating the visit, Pat and Doreen always having an open door to welcome them in and a pillow to lay their head on. Even after the kids were grown and gone they could be seen setting off down the road in their little green Smart car seeking out new adventures and memories. Pat and Doreen developed great relationships in all of the communities they lived in, including McLennan, Jasper and eventually Calgary where they made their final move so they could be close to their boys.
Pat's outlook on life was fairly pragmatic. He didn't expect you to share his opinions but he was never afraid of a good debate. But if you expected to change his mind about something then you had better be prepared to present some persuasive arguments based on good solid facts. When diagnosed with cancer, one of his primary concerns was that he didn't want to spend the last part of his life feeling sick from treatments. He wanted his last months to be focused on those he loved most in the world and that is exactly what he did. Pat will always be remembered for his witty sense of humour and his compassion for those less fortunate than him, but most of all he will be remembered for his big heart. May his spirit soar high, free of his earthly burdens, and may he reconnect with those he has loved and lost.
Special thanks are extended to the amazing and wonderful staff at the Chinook Hospice in Calgary. The family appreciates all the loving care Pat received during his time there and the support extended to his family.