Howard Wesley Mercer, better known as Chief or Chiefy to friends and family, passed away suddenly on December 20, 2022. He had just celebrated his 65th birthday in August.
Chief was born August 1, 1957, in Red Lake, Ontario. He was the ninth child of Maggie and Percy Mercer’s eleven children! Chiefy had five brothers and five sisters.
When several of Chiefy’s siblings moved out West in the early 1970’s, he followed them out west in around 1975. He found employment with the Slocan Forest Products in Slocan, BC and he remained with that company until 2010. After a few years of trying different careers, he once again found his niche with Interfor Corporation in Castlegar, BC. where he was still employed at the time of his passing.
It was in Slocan where he met the love of his life, Cathy Hamilton. After a few years of friendship and a courtship they married in 1986. Chiefy was the proud father of Brenden and Kelsey. They were the apple of his eye and he shared their stories and accomplishments with his friends and family endlessly. These sentiments were only surpassed by his love for Molly, his 13-year-old grand-puppy.
Chiefy loved his sports and loved playing golf and hockey and, in the early days, championship fastball with the BC Arrows. He played hockey with the Castlegar Old-Timers the day prior to his passing.
In the early morning of December 20th, without prewarning, Chief passed away from a heart attack. His family and friends were in disbelief because he lived a healthy lifestyle and had plans to ramp up his golf while increasing visits to his kids. He said he was going to take the big suitcase and stay for 6 months at a time – a joke passed onto him by his older brother Frank. He was in a content place and departed with a full heart.
Chiefy was pre-deceased by his parents, Percy Phillip and Maggie Jane Mercer. Also pre-deceased were three brothers, Frank, Stanley and Barney Mercer. He is survived by brother John and Harvey Mercer and five sisters Margaret Gregoire, Ada Acton, Desta Schlott, Chi Mercer and Phyllis Ward. He was also survived my numerous nephews and nieces and his loving wife, Cathy Mercer and two children Brenden and Kelsey Mercer.
Rest In Peace – husband, father, brother and friend - Chief. You will be greatly missed.
Planning for a late spring reception is underway and the details will be updated here when finalized.