We are saddened to announce the passing of Mike Birbeck on January 1, 2022. Mike will be lovingly remembered by his best friend and spouse Joanne Birbeck; his blended family children Ryan Birbeck, Makenna (Marc) Lalonde, Olivia (and her partner), Stefanie (Jimmy) Olandesca, Casey Herman; grandchildren Jordyn Olandesca, and Theo Lalonde; mother Joan Birbeck; sisters Leslie (John) Deland, Susan (Andre Labelle) Birbeck, Nancy (Jeremy Owen) Birbeck, and Wendy (Paul) Nickerson; best friend Derek (Lucy) McSweeney; mother-in-law Doreen Sailer; sisters-in-law Janice (Bruce) Dynes, and Elaine (Jim) McKinley; brother-in-law Gary Burr; and other relatives in Canada and England.
Mike was predeceased by his father Bill Birbeck in 2021, and his sister-in-law Shelley Burr in 2014.
He received many awards during his life. In 1977, Mike received a Canadian Forces Certificate of Military Achievement for qualifying as a Basic Parachutist and was granted Canadian Parachute Wings. In 1978 he was awarded the Gold Standard of the Duke of Edinburgh Awards by His Royal Highness the Duke of Edinburgh. In 2010 he was awarded the Male Coach of the Year for Calgary and Alberta Special Olympics.
Mike was a dedicated member of the Calgary Police Service for over 25 years. He loved his work as a police officer. Whether it was working in Forest Lawn where he helped community members organize The Teen Club, working surveillance, or ending his career assigned to the Integrated Proceeds of Crime Unit. Mike had lots of happy and not-so-happy stories of his CPS career. He retired in 2011 and worked for numerous employers until ending his working career with WestJet Airlines. He retired in November 2020.
Mike longed to live in the country and his dream was fulfilled when he and Joanne purchased their acreage in West Bragg Creek in 2013. This was his sanctuary. He loved entertaining with family and friends at the acreage. Mike was the ultimate host and loved to cook. He and Joanne worked tirelessly on the acreage, and he was very proud of all the work they did.
Mike also loved to travel, and his favorite vacationing spot was Maui. Finally in the summer of 2020, after renovations to the inside of the house, Mike had his dream kitchen to cook for the family. Sadly, he was diagnosed with bladder cancer on December 26, 2020.
He loved his children and grandchildren unconditionally. He will be remembered for his compassion; caring for others before himself; and his love for his children, his grandchildren, and his Joanne.
Joanne and the family would like to thank Dr. Alimohamed and her medical team for the outstanding compassion and medical treatment; the medical teams at the Oilfield Hospital in Black Diamond; and units 46 and 47 of the Foothills Hospital. Finally a huge thank you to Foothills Country Hospice, you’re caring was exceptional.
Due to current restrictions, there will not be a service at this time. In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations be made to the Alberta Cancer Foundation, Foothills Country Hospice, or the charity of your choice.
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