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DICKINS, Edward Samuel. It is with love and sadness that we announce the passing of Edward ‘Ed’ Samuel Dickins on May 29, 2020 in Kelowna. Ed spent 97 years touching the lives of many and possessed the kind of character honed only through a lifelong commitment to something bigger than himself. He is now at rest with the love of his life and wife of 69 years, Edith ‘Eddie’ Dickins (née Sanborn, d. 2015).

Ed epitomizes the definition of volunteer on behalf of his fellow citizens. Born in Wilkie, Saskatchewan in 1923 to Albert Edward Dickins and Ellen Bessie Burt, the family moved to Kelowna in 1937 where he volunteered for service with the British Columbia Dragoons (BCDs) in July 1940. The captain of a four-man Sherman tank crew, Ed served Canada as part of the Royal Canadian Armoured Corps in England, Italy and Northwest Europe including being wounded during World War II. Upon his return to Canada in 1945, he resumed civilian life in Kelowna, married his childhood sweetheart Eddie and together had three children, Ted, Carol and Janice. Ed continued his service with the Army Reserves until his final retirement in 1975.

In his lifetime, Ed has volunteered and served as Commanding Officer with the Royal Canadian Army Cadets, President of Branch 26 Royal Canadian Legion, President of the BCD Regimental Association (Whizzbangs), President and Founder of the Kelowna Veendam Sister City Association, Provincial President of the Junior Chamber of Commerce, Co-Chair of the Kelowna Cenotaph Improvement Project, and Founding Director of the Okanagan Military Museum Society.

In addition to his leadership roles, he was a volunteer veteran representative at Remembrance Day services at 20 seniors homes, spoke to schools about his military service and at citizenship ceremonies with respect to the history of Canada, and assisted in 2016 (at age 93) in the Okanagan Military Museum’s refurbishment of a historic World War I Field Gun. Ed was a long-time docent at the Military Museum and even in his advanced age continued to mail newsletters for the Whizzbang Association in spite of his near blindness.

Ed's hard work, entailing thousands of hours of volunteer time, is demonstrated by results such as the Veendam Walk in Kelowna City Park, a new inclusive Cenotaph to recognize locals who paid the ultimate sacrifice, the Okanagan Military Museum, the BCD Mural at the Military Museum, and generations of Canadians that value those who have served their country.

In recognition of Ed spending the last eight decades of his life doing acts of service, he has been awarded some of Canada and British Columbia’s highest honors, including the Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal (2012), the British Columbia Medal of Good Citizenship (2018), and the Sovereign’s Medal for Volunteers (2018). Each of the awards recognizes individuals who, through exceptional long-term service, have made outstanding contributions to their communities without expectation of remuneration or reward.

Ed was a role model not only in his community, but also in his family. He is survived by his two daughters Carol Burns and Janice Dickins, sister-in-law Jean Rankin, five grandchildren Michael Burns (Tammy), Cathy Burns, Michyl Culos (Sedrik), Carla Culos (Justus) and Blake Culos (Alaura), great-granddaughter Tristina Burns (Justin), great-great-grandson Zayne Edward Hoet, numerous nieces, nephews and honorary grandchildren, and dear friend Ruth Stirling.

A celebration of his life will follow at a later date organized by his family in partnership with the BCDs. In memory of Ed, you may make a donation to the Okanagan Military Museum or the Kelowna Salvation Army.

British Columbia and the lives of many are better because of the compassion, dedication and tireless commitment of Ed Dickins. If success is defined by how others fared because of your efforts, then may you rest easy, Ed. As they say in the BCDs, ‘The objective is secure.’

With enduring love and gratitude.

More About Ed Dickins:
BC Dragoons: In Memory of Capt (Retired) Ed Dickins
Kelowna Capital News: Kelowna resident to receive Good Citizen Award
The Memory Project: Veteran Stories: Edward Dickins

Condolences may be sent to the family by visiting https://www.dignitymemorial.com/obituaries/kelowna-bc Arrangements entrusted to First Memorial Funeral Services, 250-762-2299.

Condolence Messages
  • Jun 23, 2020
    Our thoughts, prayers, and wishes for peace through many happy memories to your whole family at this time. We know how much you treasured and admired your Dad, and understand the hole he has left in your heart. His accomplishments were many, but it is clear that above all he shared love with his family.
    Robert Ohlmann
  • Jun 18, 2020
    To Carol and Janice. I am so sorry for your loss. When I first met Ed, at Lakeshore Place, I realized that I had just met a true gentleman. His smile and his quick wit could brighten anyone's day. His passion for his community and country was amazing. You will be truely missed Mr. Ed Dickens RIP
    Marie Green
  • Jun 09, 2020
    I joined the Army Cadets in the mid to late 1970's when Captain Dickins was the Commanding Officer of the BC Dragoons in Kelowna. I remember him as being a kind and pleasant leader. My condolences to his family. May he Rest in Peace. Ken Hoffman
  • Jun 07, 2020
    Dear Jan, Carol and family,
    Grandpa D will always hold a place in our hearts and memory. Loved him dearly.
    Phyllis, Ken, Katie and Kelsey Johnson
  • Jun 05, 2020
    Carol and Janice, we had such wonderful camping trips with your mom and dad and Lillies. We also enjoyed all the years we spent as friends while in Jaycees. We will miss him, Ross and Aggie Wightman
    Our condolences to all the family
  • Jun 05, 2020
    Dear family of Ed Dickins,
    I knew your father through his and dear Eddie’s many volunteer hours with the Canadian Cancer Society lodge. Your father gave abundantly with his heart and with humbleness. He simply did what needed to be done. I am privileged to have known him.
    My condolences,
    Elfe Shukla
  • Jun 04, 2020
    Carol and Janice, so sorry to hear your dad passed on. Your mom and dad were such wonderful people. It was a privilege to sell their home for them and it was ever so nice that they moved into the same home as Dales mom and dad so we were able to visit. Sure missed seeing your dad after Dales dad passed in 2918. He will be missed just as we missed your mom too.
    Pauline Draper
  • Jun 04, 2020
    Janice, Carol and family,
    I'm so sorry to hear of your dad's recent passing. What a huge loss. I always enjoyed chatting with Ed when I would visit my dad at Lakeshore Place. I knew him as a caring, considerate man who had a quick wit and liked to tease. Ed's kind words when my mom passed away, and his attendance at her memorial revealed what a gentle, caring man he was.
    Catherine Dyck
  • Jun 04, 2020
    My condolences on the loss of a great man. He served his country and community well. I knew him as a neighbour of my parents many years ago and through the curling club. My brother, Kevin Cmolik, had a military connection with Ed and he thought very highly of him. Gail Glasscock
  • Jun 04, 2020
    Family and friends, Capt. Dikins was my CO of 903rd Squadron British Columbia Dragoons. What I remember most was his salute as the corps snapped to attention. The salute was respect, and respect returned. These same hands that were battle weary and tough were also the backbone of the Dragoons. I always wondered how he came to have the scars and battered hands that swung up to his cap brim. He never commanded respect but earned it through his presence as a decent caring human being. Thank you for your service, God rest your soul, Captain, D,
    Dale Wittich
  • Jun 04, 2020
    Janice and Family
    So sorry to learn of Ed's passing, he was always such a pleasure to see in our dealership getting one of his many postal vehicles serviced, he always had a big smile. I am sure my father Archie will meet him at his next stop to make sure his tires made the trip in fine condition.
    Brian August
  • Jun 04, 2020
    Janice and Family: our thoughts and prayers go out to you . Arnie and Anne.
  • Jun 03, 2020
    Dear Carol, Janice, and family,
    So very sorry to hear about the passing of Uncle Eddie, but happy he has gone to be with the Lord and loved ones that have gone before him. Uncle Eddie was a class act and was always there for our family. His wonderful laugh, gentle spirit and kindness were just some of his amazing attributes. He was loved and will be missed by many. May you be comforted by wonderful memories at this difficult time.
    Love and blessings,
    William and Sharon O’Brien
  • Jun 03, 2020
    So sorry Jan and Dickins Family
    thinking of you at this sad time
    I sure enjoyed many visits with mom and dad at the pharmacy, they'll truly be missed.
    In friendship Faye n Dave Filipchuk
  • Jun 03, 2020
    Carol, Janice and the Dicken's family,
    My sincerest condolences on the passing of Ed.
    Marilyn Calvin (Wigall)
  • Jun 03, 2020
    Carol, Janice and families, your Dad was loved by all the neighbour children and .adults alike. He had a special place in my heart from my first memory until his leaving this earth. He will be remembered by so many of us that had the pleasure of sharing his life, love and sense of humour. Love you all, Barb Coe Schmidt
  • Jun 03, 2020
    Our deepest condolences to you and you family. Ed was a leader and strong volunteer with the Okanagan Military Museum and it was an honour to meet him. He will be much missed.
    Sincerely, Shannon Jorgenson
  • Jun 03, 2020
    To the family of Ed,
    What a dear dear man! I was very fortunate to work with Ed many times on flight arrangements for veterans over to Holland. He was a true gentleman and I thoroughly enjoyed working with him. I am very sorry for you loss. I send you my most heartfelt condolences. Rest in Peace Ed.
    Sincerely, Carol Romanchuk - Capri Travel
  • Jun 03, 2020
    Janice and carol my sweet cuz, words I don't have , but my heart hurts my life was blessed to no and be related to your mom and dad .uncle Ed was all class a gentleman with a big heart ,I was so glad to be beside him this November 11 at city park.you should be proud how you were beside him as he took his last step. My prayers are for your family , love you Laverne Obrien
  • Jun 03, 2020
    It was a pleasure to have known Ed, if only for a little while. I am part of the staff at Lakeshore Place, and for the short time I've known Ed, I could see he had many friends who will miss him dearly. He always had a smile and a great sense of humor. Rest in peace, Ed.
    You will be missed.
  • Jun 03, 2020
    Jan, Carol I didn't know Ed that well but I do know his service to our Country and
    the community will always be remembered. I am always reminded on November
    the 11th of the BCD Regiment and the commitment by two young Kelowna men being your dad and Art Orsi, God bless his Soul, you will always have great memories of your dad.
    Thinking of you, Grant and Toni
  • Jun 03, 2020
    Mr.Dickens was the destination of true Canadian .. It was always a pleasure chatting with him his passion for Canada and Kelowna was amazing .
    In knowing him all my life he will be missed and he made Kelowna a better place to live , He now will be chatting with my Dad(Val) about their Post Office days
    Our thoughts and prayers are with You
    Domenic and LIna Rampone
  • Jun 03, 2020
    To the family of Ed. Dickens;
    It was an honour and a privilege to have shared a dinner table with Ed and his dear friend, Ruth, here at Lakeshore Place for much too short a time. John enjoyed his conversations with Ed.
    We took a LSP bus tour to the war museum and were fortunate to have Ed and Ruth on that trip. Ed added so much to our visit by way of explanations and answering questions. Our memories of :our short friendship with Ed will remain forever
    He willl be missed..
    Our sincere condolences to ali Ed's family and friends.
    Pat and John Moxness
  • Jun 03, 2020
    Dear family,
    My sincerest condolences on the passing of Ed. I knew him briefly when I saw him at Lakeshore place, helping him with personal tasks. He was a true gentleman and had a lovely twinkle in his eye, always cheerful and very pleasant. I never got to know him better, so I am grateful to learn about Ed's great contributions to life and beyond. He was a special man. May he rest in peace.
    Teresa Vanderhorst
  • Jun 03, 2020
    Rest in Peace, Grandpa D.
    Marguerite Stickland
  • Jun 03, 2020
    Carol, Janice and the Dicken's family:
    Please accept my deepest condolences on the passing of Ed. I have known Ed and his late wife Edie since our days in the Kelowna Jaycees beginning in the early 60s. I know that Ed will be greatly missed by all those who knew him.
    Bren Witt