We Remember

MARTIN, Michael Blake

January 17, 1946 — August 31, 2014


On August 31, 2014 in KGH after a short and brave fight with cancer, Mike left this world holding the hand of the love of his life and best friend, Judy.  Mike was a real man’s man, someone you could count on to give a helping hand when it was needed whether it was loading a moving van or stepping up to a stove at a party to cook gourmet mussels.  On one of our annual group weekend house boating excursions at Reluctant Dragon Bay we had two incidents that speak to Mike’s character.  Captain Joe took a spill off the top deck and dislocated his shoulder.  Mike sprang into action and put Joe’s shoulder back into place.  Later on that same night we were hit by an unexpected furious storm.  Instantly Mike took charge and organized all of us which saved the boat from possible destruction.  The next day Mike played a major part in getting the boat seaworthy enough to get us back to the dock. He later organized the repairs which brought the boat back up to scratch.

Mike was a skillful craftsman.  With no formal training Mike completely renovated the old house he and Judy bought, both inside and out.  His natural skill has made it not only a showplace but a warm and welcoming home for he and Judy to enjoy and entertain friends and family. 

Whether it was a round of golf or sharing a bottle of wine, Mike was just a great guy to be with.

Mike was born January 17, 1946 in Vancouver. He grew up in the lower mainland attending Vancouver College and St. Thomas Aquinas High where he was quarterback of the school football team. He graduated from Notre Dame High School in 1964 and then attended Vancouver Vocational Institute.   Mike was active in many sports.  He was a coach and player with the Labatt’s Burnaby Bats Canadian Championship Senior A men’s slow-pitch ball team in the early ‘80’s and played rugby with the Vancouver Meralomas for many years.  He also coached a women’s championship softball team taking them to Japan for an international tournament in the ‘70’s.  Mike started his working career with the American Can company in Vancouver, for which his dad had worked for many years.  Mike moved to Kelowna in the mid ‘80’s with American Can but returned to Vancouver after a few years and joined Molson’s Brewery and finally Dairyland before he came back to the Okanagan for good.

Mike arrived in Kelowna in 1998 and joined SunRype as a  production supervisor.  He moved to Mission Hill Winery in 2001  as Operations Supervisor until his retirement in 2010.  He returned to Mission Hill each fall after that to help with the grape harvest.   Since his retirement, he and Judy have enjoyed annual travels in Mexico making many good friends along the way.

Mike will be greatly missed by his life partner, Judy Ronacher, and Judy’s sons Travis (wife Ginger and grandson Jack), Jarvis (wife Adrianne and grandson Vann) and Dallas, as well as many friends.  Mike was predeceased by his parents and brother Pat and survived by sister Tami and family.

A celebration of Mike’s life will be held on Sunday Sept 7th between 1 and 4PM at their home at 1068 Westside Road in West Kelowna.  In lieu of flowers, donations in memory of Mike may be made to the Canadian Cancer Society. 

For those wishing to send a condolence, photos or share memories, may do so by scrolling down this page to the area called “Share Your Condolences.”



Sunday Sept 7th between 1 and 4 PM


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Service Information

Service Details

The service for MARTIN, Michael Blake is scheduled for Sunday Sept 7th between 1 and 4 PM . Below you will find the map for the service location and the contact information should you have any questions.

Address & Contact for Service Location:


1068 Westside Road West Kelowna, BC


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Funeral Pointers:



  • Ingrid Fehler says:

    I am so sorry for your loss. Thinking of you in this difficult time.

    Ingrid Fehler

  • Dorothy Donaldson says:

    So sad for you today. My sympathy goes out to you and your family for your loss.

  • Dennis Derrien says:

    Lots of good memories from days gone by. First met Mike in 1967 making cans in those wild and crazy days. Mike liked to go for the home run not a singles hitter.God Bless you Mike and condolences to the family.

  • William & Heather Michaluk says:

    So sorry to hear of Mikes passing we worked with Mike in Kelowna & Richmond
    Willie & Heather Michaluk

  • Richard and Elaine says:

    Judy: so shocked to hear from Gail,of Mike’s passing. This was way too soon and too fast. Our condolences to you and your family, and our hope that all the good memories you made together will see you through forever.
    Richard and Elaine Gibbons

  • Kent and Beverlee Williams says:

    We feel blessed to have known Mike.He was a fantastic person and will be missed by so many loved he touched along his life journey. Mike will always hold a very special spot in our hearts.

  • Ruth Steward says:

    Dear Judy and family; I am so sorry to hear of Mikes passing, such a great guy! My heart goes out to you.

  • Patrick Whittingham says:

    Judy, so sorry to hear of Mike’s passing. Mike was always such a friendly co-worker during our days at Sun-Rype.

  • Jim and Wendy Gaffan says:

    Our thoughts and prayers are with all of you during this time of loss. For the few times we’ve spent with you both, we are very blessed to have known Mike, such an awesome man, he will be missed!

  • Alan Kozek says:

    So sorry to hear about Mike.I worked with Mike at American Can in Vancouver and then Ball Corp. in Richmond for many years.

  • Erika Lavigne says:

    Dearest Judy,
    Our lives are abundantly richer having made wonderful memories with you and with Mike. We’ll always have our “Sunday beach walks” in Puerto.
    Love Erika and Marc Lavigne

  • Barbara Armstrong says:

    Dear Judy and Family,

    We are so sorry to hear of Mike’s passing. We have happy memories of the good time we all had at Birch Bay. Lots and lots of love from your Miami cousins, Barbara and Orlando

  • Don Ross says:

    RIP Mike Martin, he was always good for a laugh whether it be Alexander St. or Richmond. Very good sense of humour!!

  • Mike and Denise says:

    we are sorry for your loss. We didn’t see you and Mike other than at Christmas time most years, but truly enjoyed our time spent with the both of you. You are in our thoughts and prayers.

  • Lynn and Walter Sutherland says:

    Dear Judy.
    We were very sorry to hear your sad news and we are thinking of you during this difficult time. We are so happy to have met you and Mike on that cab ride to Puerto and want you to know how much we enjoyed our time together in Mexico. We admire how well you both confronted Mike’s illness.
    Fond Regards
    Lynn and Walt Sutherland.

  • Carol Liggitt says:

    Judy, words cannot express my condolenses for your loss of Mike. May the wonderful memories that you made in your beautiful life together, get you through this most difficult time.

  • Judy Elderkin says:

    I haven’t seen Mike in quite a few years, but he was a wonderful person……so sorry for your loss

  • Louise Madden (Schulthess) says:

    Judy, I was heartbroken when Ruth told me about Mike. I remember when I first met Mike thinking what a great match you two were and what a great life you would have together. It is with great sadness that I send these condolences,but may the memories of your time together, be in your heart forever. My thoughts are with you and your family.

  • Carolynne Ross says:

    So sorry to hear of Mike’s passing Judy. Thinking of you in this difficult time. Regards, Carolynne Ross

  • Jeanne & David Lawrence says:

    Judy, we knew you and Mike for such a short time but what fun we had in Mexico. David will always remember the golf and I shall think of Mike every year on January 17th – we share the same birth date. Our thoughts are with you for his remembrance day today.

  • Lynn Tamaki says:

    Dear Judy…
    My thoughts are with you always. Mike was a very special man. May the memories your created together, keep your heart and your soul safe and warm ….

    Lynn Tamaki

  • George and Gabriele Nater says:

    Dear Judy It is with a heavy heart I am sending the condolence.I have nice memories of Mike at work and seeing him with you many times around Westbank.Take care always
    Gabriele Nater

  • Patrick and Sandra says:

    After many wonderful stories from Marthe and Bern, and your time together in Puerto Escondido, we feel like we have come to know Mike personally. We only met him once but he made a lasting impression on us. Our deepest sympathies to you and your family. Regards, Patrick and Sandra Schryburt

  • Ric Robinson says:

    I too worked with Mike @ American Co from 67 til he left! Yes, a guy’s guy! In those wild & crazy youth days, you can imagine the fun (trouble) he always caused, all beit at the monthly meetings or at our ball games. Sympathies to his family

  • Rose Jorgenson-Mills says:

    What a surprize to hear of Mike’s passing! I too worked with Mike at American Can on the waterfront in Vancouver
    and in Richmond.
    Always enjoyed his company and he was ready to party whenever there was a ‘reason’!
    Judy….sorry for your loss but sounds like you have many special memories that will keep him close in your mind and your heart.
    Rose Jorgenson-Mills

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