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Allen Payne

Allen Payne

Friday, November 12th, 1954 Wednesday, September 30th, 2020

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Obituary

Obituary for Allen Robert Payne

Al was my brother.

He was born on November 12th, 1954. On September 30th, 2020 he left us. He was alone in his apartment when he died of a heart attack. At 65 his body gave out. His passing came not so much as a shock (because the last decade or so of his life had been a struggle physically) but as a premature wrenching away. When you spoke to Al, you always thought he still had a lot left in him.

Born in Victoria, he and our family lived in Sooke, Harris Creek, Royston, Parksville and Qualicum Beach on the Island before moving to Haney in 1969. Al had a wicked sense of humour. He could always make you laugh, often to the point of tears. This was especially true of our mom, Pauline, who passed in 2007. One day when Al and I were kids, living in Qualicum Beach, we were waiting for the paper truck to deliver the Vancouver Sun so we could do our paper routes. We were riding our bikes around and around the totem pole beside the highway, when Al shouted out “I’m a Mars Bar! , I’m a Mars Bar!”. No one, including Al, knew what he meant, but it was so funny, I fell off my bike laughing.

He was a popular guy on his sports teams and at work. Al was a good athlete throughout his youth and into his early adult life. Baseball, basketball, and especially soccer were the games he played. He was brave enough to play catcher in baseball. During the last few years of the men’s fastpitch softball league here in “Haney”, he played third base and he had the quickness, arm and kamikaze attitude to pull it off. You had to be a little crazy to play goal in men’s soccer in the 70s and early 80s, but Al was very, very good at it. He had a lot of fun curling here in town, initially with me on a mixed team. No one on the team had skipped before and no one wanted to either. So we decided he and I would take turns, changing it up when we lost. Turns out that was every game, so we both got our feet wet as skips that first year, but it was great fun. Later on Al curled with Jay and a couple of other guys. Al told me they had a blast. But if you gave Al a choice of doing anything, he’d choose fishing hands down. He loved to be on the water. Our dad, Clif, who died in 2000 (also of a heart attack) taught Al and me to fish when the family lived in Parksville. The many hours on the saltchuck left Al with a lifelong love of the sport. Al’s best buddy Jay and he spent a lot of time together in a boat on lakes, rivers and the salt water around the province.

Al lived very simply. Got together with Jay, Mark and Brent when he could. Watched a lot of sports. Did a lot of reading. He had more than a few books about the history of logging in B.C. (Not surprising, since our Dad worked in the woods for decades.) He went fishing and gave a lot of the fish away. He cooked perogies for himself and for others. Hosted Superbowl parties. Was happy to invite the neighbours in his building in for a chat and a beer. Al could very often be seen on his balcony, sitting outside, having a smoke, watching people and cars go by, thinking about things.

Al and I, a few months after we moved to Haney (from Qualicum Beach), were walking to MRSS one morning and got to the area where Laityview school is now. We were looking north, out past the fields and to the flats. It looked to us like that should be where the saltchuck should be (if we were back home on the Island). He said to me then that some day he would move back to the Island. He never did though. Wonder where he is now?

Al will be missed, among others, by his brother Wilf, sister-in-law Elaine, niece Tristen, nephew Scott, former wife Jennifer, friends Jay and Brent plus neighbour and friend Shelley. No service or gathering will be held.

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