ERDELY, Don J.
May 16, 1955 — April 28, 2022
It is with sorrowful hearts that we announce the passing of Don J. Erdely on April 28, 2022, at Kelowna General Hospital surrounded by his family, after a sudden but courageous battle with cancer. Don leaves behind his partner Heather (and her child Ali); his three children DaLee, Travis (Charlotte) and Amanda (Tim); his four grandchildren Jaden, Rylan, Carly and Taylor; and his brothers Gary (Addie) and Glen (Joan); and his sister Maureen (Dan). Don was born in Athabasca, Alberta to John & Virginia Erdely, joining his 2 older brothers and followed by his sister. The family of 6 enjoyed their early family life as farmers on his father’s homestead, in a farming community outside Boyle, Alberta.
Don came from proud but humble beginnings, he was always a dreamer and those dreams, along with the courage to follow them, lead him to achieve great accomplishments, always reminding his children that we were his biggest one.
He lived in Athabasca, AB from1955 – 1987. It was there Don learned all about hard work and determination from his father and mother. He grew up with his childhood best friend Wade (Karen), and they have maintained that friendship for over 55 years. After he graduated, he farmed with his older brother Gary, he was a Hockey Arena Manager, an Oil Rig Worker, and he started his first small construction company. He enjoyed hunting, fishing, snowmobiling and always gravitated towards building, the outdoors, and animals.
He moved to Kelowna, BC in 1987, where his love for the outdoors continued – but he traded in hunting for a camera, quadding, and recreational shooting. He tried new hobbies like painting, golf, boating, kayaking, hiking, nature photography, travelling, and let’s not forget his love of country and rock music and collecting tequila!! There were many quadding, fishing, and golfing trips with his best friend Cindy of over 20 years and other friends, including his son Travis and son-in-law Tim.
In Kelowna Don started his home building company, Destination Homes & Destination Management & Marketing Inc. he had an amazing home building, construction, and land development management career. From 1987 to 2012 he built over 125 homes (many in Smith Creek) and managed many single family, townhome, & multi-level condominium communities, including: Glen Meadows, Mallards Landing, Grandview Estates, Grandview Park, Chelsea Gardens, Chartwell, Grandview Terrace, Westlake Gardens, Sitara on The Pond, and The Radius. His expertise in land development management was wide-ranging including Quail Ridge Golf Community, The Outback Lakeside Resort, The Cove Lakeside Resort, Vicarro Ranch, and Wood Lake RV Park.
In 2012, Don decided to exclusively focus his career on Land Development Management. It was with great pride that his son Travis wanted to continue his legacy and keep Destination Homes. 10
years later, Destination home is thriving and Don could not have been more proud.
Don’s last 15+ years were spent as Vice President of Development for Macdonald Communities. He was responsible for municipal planning & approvals; land development operations; infrastructure design and installation; and sales and marketing activities in the Okanagan region. This is where Don completed “The Lakes” development in Lake Country, BC, one of the Okanagan’s most successful residential communities. Don’s current project before his unexpected passing was Director Of Operations of the award-winning Lakestone project, also in Lake Country, BC, an unparalleled waterfront master planned community, which will be home to over 1350 families.
Don was also a Former Board of Directors for Urban Development Institute Okanagan Chapter. He was currently acting as “Chair” for the Urban Development Institute District of Lake Country Liaison Committee.
Don spent his last seven years with his loving and faithful partner, Heather. They shared many adventures together including travelling, the cabin, and quadding adventures and so much more. A wonderful reminder that no one is ever too old to fall in love.
Don was a very honourable, proud, strong, and loving man. His partner, family, friends, and Spooky his cat meant the world to him.
Dad, your life was taken so quickly and way too soon. The void you have left in us all will never be filled. Your life, your sarcastic humour, wisdom, patience, and amazing accomplishments will never be lost or forgotten. I know your mom and dad were there to greet you with open arms. Till we meet again… and we will.
The family would also like to thank the Kelowna General Hospital staff on 5b and the doctors for their amazing care and the support they gave Dad and our family over the last 3 weeks.
In Memory of Don, please consider making a donation to any of the following: BC Cancer Foundation; The Interior Wildlife Rehabilitation Society (IWRS); or BC SPCA Kelowna Community Animal Centre.
A Service will be held on SUNDAY, MAY 15, 2022, at 1:00 PM, at SPRINGFIELD FUNERAL HOME, 2020 Springfield Rd, Kelowna, BC. A Celebration of Life will follow the service at the same location.
If you are unable to attend in person, please join the family online by Livestream at the time of the service (see below), a recording will be made available to view shortly thereafter.
If you wish to send a condolence, post photos, or share a memory, please scroll down the page to the area called “Condolences”.
SUNDAY, MAY 15, 2022, at 1:00 PM
SPRINGFIELD FUNERAL HOME
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The service for ERDELY, Don J. is scheduled for SUNDAY, MAY 15, 2022, at 1:00 PM. Below you will find the map for the service location and the contact information should you have any questions.
I am very sorry for your loss, I may not make his celebration of life as I will be out in mother nature on my dirt bike where Don would want me to be. I will think of him and take him and Brian with me.
My deepest condolences to all the family and friend of Don Erdely. I had the opportunity to meet this wonderful man 4 years ago. Dalee, Travis, Amanda, Heather and all the spouses and grandchildren, your love for him was great. He was proud of all of you and celebrate his life. He enjoyed everything he could and loved you all.
Don, you will be missed.. thank you for the hamburgers on the BBQ and a quad ride your daughter will never forget.. Live on in spirit and protect everyone. To all the extended family and friends , celebrate with all to keep his memories alive forever..
From The Ruklic Family, Willie, Cassie, Carter, Paulina, Dennis and Stephanie.
Our deepest sympathy to all the family and Freind What a shock he had so much planed this. Sume. Love Yous All
The District of Lake Country Council and Staff wish to extend sincere condolences to Don’s family for their grievous loss. He will be missed by us all.
Our sincere condolences to your family, he will be missed by many.
Travis and Charlotte, we are so very sorry for your loss. Thinking of you all. Mike and Maddy
I will always have fond memories of working with Don as he craftily thought up new ideas and ways to implement them. He was truly a gentleman, always polite and I will miss our great conversations. Cherish every moment in life. I had no idea how impactful his phone call was to me when he found out I had left Lake Country and he made a point of calling me in Armstrong simply to say how much he appreciated our work together over the years and that If I ever needed anything to let him know. That was just the kind of man he was. Genuine in heart and spirit and truly appreciative!!! In loving memory to a truly fantastic and engaging human being taken too soon!!! My condolences to the family he will be missed. He has left a lasting legacy that will stand the test of time on the okanagan landscape but most importantly in people’s hearts. Farewell Don until we meet again in another life!!!
My Condolences on your loss. I went to school with Don in Athabasca for all of our school years. It is sad when people we knew are gone. We miss them and wish we had kept in touch. We need to reach out to those that we can while we are still able to. Sounds like Don had a very good life and loving family. He will be missed. I am enclosing some early school picture of Don and I. Hope it’s O.K. to do so.
Heather ,DeLee, Travis, Amanda and families.
My sincere condolences on your loss of a wonderful family man and a friend to so many. Don and I go back together to our early school days. We shared many amazing days together, especially after graduation when we became two of the grad class that remained in Athabasca. Many a meal was shared at either the Erdely farm or our home in Athabasca after a successful duck hunt, pickup hockey game or before a night on the town! He was always an enthusiastic friend with such a positive outlook on life. Last summer he called when visiting Athabasca and I found a few high school friends to meet for coffee. We played a round of golf and Don asked me about investment opportunities in our town. Even as he approached retirement he couldn’t sit still! His plan was to return this summer with Heather and spend a few days with us at the lake, something we were both looking forward to doing! I take many wonderful memories of Don with me. May you as well.
we send our deepest condolences to the family and friends of Don.
Karen, Linda, Patrick and Lucien
Deepest condolences to all of the family. RIP Don.
Travis and Family
All our condolences to you from all the guys at the Matcon Group of Companies. Don will be missed…we have lost a great client and an amazing friend. Memories of our client trips to Haa Ne Naa Lodge with Don, sitting around the dinner table telling fishing lies will live on. We were always gald that Travis could join our group with his dad
It was with great sadness that I learned of Don’s illness and passing. I will always remember the great times we had together growing up. My fondest memories are of him telling corny jokes that he seemed to have a never ending supply of when riding the bus together on the way to school. He always kept me entertained all the way to school. We had such great times together when we played ball together on the Paxson baseball team. We had such a good team and he was our first baseman and power hitter. I know he saved me so many times on errant throws just with his big reach and great glove. The last time I saw Don was when he came all the way from Kelowna to attend Dad’s funeral. That by itself is a testament to a true friend. I was so happy to see him there. I know I never got a chance to talk to him near as long as I would have liked. It’s during trying times such as these that we wish we could go back in time and relive those moments we had so much fun together. Please accept heartfelt condolences from myself and my wife Angie to the Erdely family. Don will be missed and he was taken much too soon from us.
To all Don’s loved ones – my sincere condolences. I have many fond memories of interacting with him while I was at CLK. I am deeply saddened by the news of his passing.
That was the most beautiful tribute to an amazing man. The sky just opened up and is raining down both love and sorrow. He is a man we will never forget and I thank him for the great memories and lessons he has left us with. The world is truly a better place because he was here. What a gift it was to have known him. Our deepest respect and sympathy to his family from The Dobbin’s.
Dear Don’s children, dear Heather
We are so sorry for the loss of your dad and husband. We regret that we never had the chance meeting him in person. We hoped for when we would visit Cindy in Kelowna. Never thought it would not be possible that way. Share your memories and keep him in your minds..
When he lives in the memories of his love one’s he is not dead he is in a distance..Only dead is who is forgotten
Wer im Gedächtnis seiner Lieben lebt ist nicht Tod nur fern.Wer vergessen wird ist Tod.( Immanuel Kant))
Heather, Delee, Travis, Amanda, and families
I feel blessed to have known Don. He always added to the fun and was a big contributor to some wonderful memories – Quadding and fishing at the cabin, swims around the pontoon boat and rides in the back country in his beautiful truck. We’ll miss his friendship and the many adventures. He leaves a big hole in our lives!
Dear Heather, Dlee, Travis, Amanda and families and last but not least Spooky,
I cannot fathom your incredible loss. Don was such a special being. I feel privileged to have known him even for a short time. He definitely knew how have fun, but he always kept his eye on the ball. Don was meticulous, organized and certainly not afraid of a challenge. In spite of a demanding schedule, he was always there to lend a helping hand when needed. He will be missed by so many as his light shone so brightly. May love and healing surround you at this time.
Dear Heather, Dlee, Travis, Amanda, Spook, and Cindy,
Don was a guy that everyone always enjoyed being around with his “uniquely-Don” sense of humor, mischievous smile, and sense of fun. The most loyal guy to his family and closest friends.
Memories of fireball, shooting guns, and ATV rides (not in that order!) in backcountry BC, catching (and releasing) marlins in Mexico and many fun times throughout the years. And that poker game that we never got to play together. Here’s to a life that was lived to the fullest, but was too short…the world is less fun without Don in it. Ryan
Heather, DaLee, Travis, Amanda and families, Cindy and Spooky, Don was the ultimate good guy- someone you were always happy to see and always seemed happy to see you. I truly admired Don’s unwavering support of his closest friends and family over the years. He was a great navigator of tough work situations, able to get things done, but a true softy underneath, always rooting for you – so happy for me when I wrote my first “the Lakes” deal. A huge heart, and a big smile gone way too soon.