NEWS RELEASE · 5th December 2011
It is with heartfelt sadness that we share the passing of Barry Pankhurst, Board of Education Chair for Coast Mountains School District 82. Barry passed away suddenly yesterday, December 4, 2011, in Vancouver, B.C.
A devoted School Trustee, Barry served in this position for 17 years reflecting outstanding dedication and service to students, especially to those with special needs.
He made a difference in our school district communities and played an essential role in the lives of thousands of students. During his last term as a School Trustee, Barry served as Board of Education Chair, a role he took on with passion and devotion.
Our deepest condolences and prayers are extended to Barry’s wife, Mary Anne, and to his family.
Details regarding service arrangements will be shared as soon as available.
We will miss Barry dearly.
To all of you I would like to say this
Comment by Merv Ritchie on 5th December 2011
Of all the Board and Council meetings I have attended (and those who know, know I attend many), Barry was the most fair and structured Chairman. He did not let people ramble on but never disallowed anyone regardless of their opinion. He didn't let any attacks proceed regardless of which side of the issue he sided. He even ensured, when he heard a hesitation, that the opinion was aired. A very difficult job. He was one of the best.
I spoke with him last year and he told me about his weak state, that his heart could quit anyday.
This year when he ran for the School District again I asked him why, why do this when you know how fragile your health is?
He told me how much he loved it, he couldn't not do it, it was his life.
We have lost an amazingly devoted man. An inspiration, a leader and a damn fine chaiman.
I am not surprised he is gone, he told me it wouldn't be long, but I am sad for the loss to our communities.
To his family and friends; by comforted by the knowledge that Barry has left a long list of people behind who will smile everytime they think of him; people you don't even know or would never suspect.
I am one of those.
Farewell my friend, it was a pleasure!