We Remember

HECK, Judith Julia (née Opitz)

January 6, 1951 — February 4, 2024

Judith Heck passed away peacefully in Kelowna, BC on February 4, 2024, at the age of 73 years.

Her journey began in Watson, Saskatchewan, in 1951, as the beloved daughter of Joseph and Rose Opitz. After a time in Regina and Calgary, Judy came to Kelowna in the spring of 1971 with her young son, Steve. It was here that she crossed paths with her husband, Ron Heck, in 1973, and the two tied the knot the following year.  Together, in 1975, Judy and Ron welcomed their son Aaron into the world and founded Tru-Form Industries, a successful small business that provided well for their family. Judy, a formidable, intelligent, and witty woman, used her skills and talents to bring success to the business she and Ron had built.  In 1983, they settled into their picturesque home in Lake Country, where they would share countless cherished memories for the rest of their days.

Judy had a passion for life and a love for many things. She found joy in the company of her grandchildren, Reese, Melee [aka Teddy], and Ailish, who never failed to bring laughter and warmth into her life.  An artist at heart, Judy’s home was a testament to her creative spirit, adorned with her own paintings, as well as her collections of art, antiques, and costume jewelry, each with its own story and memory.  Retirement brought forth a new chapter of simple pleasures for Judy, from tending to her garden to working on puzzles and listening to music – activities that brought her peace and contentment.

Her love for adventure and connection extended to her shared moments with her husband Ron. They enjoyed shared road trips, and cherished evenings spent watching live performances in the park.  Known by friends and family alike for her warmth, quick smile, and welcoming nature, Judy had a playful sense of humour, and a love for sunshine, flowers, and bright summer colours.  A talented chef, Judy delighted many with her culinary creations and was a “foodie” long before the term was coined. Whether gathered around a table playing cards, or hosting loved ones in her home, Judy had an innate gift for making everyone feel welcome and at ease.

Judy leaves behind a legacy of love and laughter, deeply cherished by her sons Steve and Aaron (Cara); and grandchildren Reese, Melee [aka Teddy], and Ailish.  She will also be dearly missed by her siblings Bettie, Ray (Marilyn), and Mary; in-laws Frieda, Kieth (Marlene), Colleen (Mark), Darryl (Linda), and Neil; and many nieces, nephews, cousins, and friends.  She was predeceased by her husband Ron (d. 2021); sister Pat (d. 2020); and brother Tom (d. 2021).

The family extends their heartfelt appreciation to Jeannette Sfreddo for her invaluable support, providing consistent comfort, care, and companionship for Judy before and after the loss of her husband, Ron. Additionally, they would like to express their sincere gratitude to the dedicated staff at the Village at Smith Creek for their compassionate care of Judy over the past few years.

Family and friends are invited to reminisce and honour the memories of Judy and Ron at their memorial bench and table, placed in Okanagan Centre Park in Lake Country, BC.

A celebration of life gathering will be held later this spring, with details forthcoming.  For those interested, please reach out to aaron.a.heck@gmail.com.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to The Alzheimer Society of Canada.

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Alzheimer's Society of Canada Link: alzheimer.ca.




  • Kelly Larson says:

    My deepest condolences to the family.

  • Terry Weadock says:

    Hi Aaron…sooo sad to lose mom…she will always be a bright light in my heart…hope u are doing ok….missing your dad too….you well know that Michael passed as well…all the good ones….tried to get ur phone #.but no luck ..am back in the valley and would love to talk to you…my # 561-814-1058. All my love..terr

  • Selena says:

    I am deeply saddened to learn of Judy’s passing and wish to extend my sincerest condolences to you during this difficult time. Your mother was an extraordinary woman, exuding life, warmth and a captivating sparkle, while your father stood as a steadfast pillar of strength and reliability. Together, they formed an inseparable duo, radiating love and warmth wherever they went with their incredible smiles. Their passing leaves an indelible void, and my heart aches knowing they are no longer with us. I am thankful for their presence in my life and my sons and I wish you all the very best!

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