John Lawrence Forster, affectionately known as Larry, passed away peacefully on Saturday January 27, 2024 in Victoria at the ripe old age of 92.

He will be sadly missed by his wife of 67 years, Jane, his children Catherine, John and Melanie and his sisters Shiela Carter and Leslie Loney.  Predeceased by his sister Linda Forster.

Born on October 30, 1931 in St Catharines, Ontario, Larry graduated from University of Toronto with a Bachelor of Applied Science Degree in Civil Engineering in 1955.   This was followed by a career with the Ontario Ministry of Transportation which spanned 35 years, including work on the Pickering Project and the Founding Chairman of Loyalist Parkway project. In 1976, Larry was appointed to be the Ontario Government’s representative to the National Defence College, Course XXX in Kingston Ontario.

After a yearlong attempt at retirement in 1989, Larry was lured back into the working world to join the Island Highway Project on Vancouver Island as their chief engineering consultant.  After five plus years of working, Larry finally retired in his adopted and much-loved home of Victoria, BC.

A quick-witted storyteller, a gardener, a camper, a music lover and traveller are some of the many words used to describe a life well lived.  Being of service to others was high on Larry’s list of priorities including time as a Scout Leader and an active member of Rotary. Larry was elected to the post of president on three occasions with multiple Rotary Clubs across the country. During his many years with Rotary, he was honoured with a Paul Harris Fellowship Award as well as Rotarian of the Year.

Despite being diagnosed with dementia in his later years, Larry’s infectious sense of humour never wavered.

The family wishes to send a special thankyou to all the staff at Sunrise Senior Living, Victoria for their extraordinary care and compassion.

Funeral Services to be held at Christ Church Cathedral, 930 Burdett Avenue, Victoria, BC on Friday, February 9, 2024 at 11:30 am.  Followed by a reception at the Union Club of British Columbia, 805 Gordon Street, Victoria.

The family welcome cards, flowers or a donation to the Alzheimer’s Society of Canada in Larry’s name.  Condolences may be offered to the family below.

McCall Gardens

  • Ted Phillips

    I had the pleasure of working directly with Larry for a couple years in the late 80’s as the Project Coordinator for the Loyalist Parkway Master Plan. That experience was career changing for me. The mentorship and guidance he provided in making a positive impact as a government employee stayed with me for the remainder of my career. Sincere sympathy to Jane and family.

  • Fay and Phillip Russell

    Larry was an outstanding Rotarian whom I respected and admired. He contributed much to our Rotary club for many years. We shared time on the International Youth Exchange Committee and many happy social events as well. Our sincere condolences to Jane and the family.

  • Phyllis Johnson

    We were sad to hear of Larry’s passing.
    Although we only knew him for a short time, we enjoyed his sense of humour and always with a twinkle in his eyes.
    He will be missed.
    Our sincere condolences go to Jane and his family.
    Phyllis and Doug Johnson

  • Henning and Margrit Fischer

    Margrit and I would like to express our heartfelt sympathy to Jane and you.

    We mourn with you, as we have also lost a valued, dear friend.

    We wish Jane and you much strength and confidence and are thinking especially of Jane, whom we wish courage and God’s blessing.
    Stay safe.

    We have so many wonderful, impressive memories of Jane and Larry since we met at a “Floating Wine Seminar” on a cruise ship on the River Rhine in October 1999.
    We met several times on their European trips, at home in the Palatinate, in Strasbourg, Paris and Hamburg.
    We will keep these memories close to our hearts.

    With warm regards

    Margrit and Henning Fischer, Großkarlbach/Germany

  • Clark Lawrence

    Dear Jane, Cathy, John and family – I am so sorry to hear about Larry’s passing. I had the great pleasure of getting to know Larry through our Rotary Club of Victoria, BC. I joined the Club in 2013 where I understand Larry had already been a valued and contributing member for more than two decades. Larry was always fun and interesting to sell car raffle tickets, serve on committees, and share lunch and dinner with. He was well respected and liked by our members and I will remember my time with him fondly. Best wishes to all of you during this very difficult time.

  • John and Rochelle Barnum

    Larry and his wonderful family gave us a life present of hosting a backyard gathering after our 1971 marriage in Thunder Bay. Melanie was the flower girl. We have had so many opportunities to be together over the years, particularly in Mississauga. My (John) Rotary life was separate from Larry until we met as couples at the 2005 100th Rotary Anniversary in Chicago.
    I sent some Happy Bucks to the Rotary Club of Victoria for Larry, the man who was always there with calmness, intelligence and joy of life. John and Rochelle Barnum

  • Lydia

    My Dear Jane,

    It was with tremendous sadness that I received the news of Larry’s death. Oh my dear please accept my very sincere condolences. Larry was such a gentleman with a gentle manner and always so kind. He will be very greatly missed and I know that hole that he leaves in the fabric of your life will take a very long time heal. My heart goes out to you. I miss seeing you .
    Take care my dear Jane.
    With warm, loving thoughts, Lydia

  • Gary Moser

    Jane and Family.
    I am so sorry to hear of your loss. Our connection with you both at Pacific Opera events was always positive. Larry’s warmth and smile was contagious and we will miss him but treasure warm memories. My best wishes to you as you continue your lives without this gentle man. Thinking about you in this difficult time.
    Gary Moser…Chair Pacific Opera Victoria Foundation

  • Jessie Isenegger

    Dear Jane,
    Tony and I send you our condolences in the loss of Larry. We hope you will be comforted by memories of your life together and by the expressions of respect and affection from those who knew him. Your friends in Rotary Anne’s will be sorry to hear of your loss and wish you well.
    Tony and Jessie Isenegger

  • Rod and Patricia Crossley

    Our sincere condolences go out to Jane and the family at this trying time. We remember Larry as a soft-spoken, amiable and constant presence at Rotary meetings, which he attended regularly; he was also a fellow parishioner of Christchurch Cathedral and faithful attendee of Sunday morning services. We know that you, Jane, will take comfort in the deep faith you shared with him.

    God bless you Jane

  • Robert Sillcox

    Dear Jane & Family-
    My late wife, Sandra, & I were good friends when the Forster’s & we were starting life together as married couples in our new homes in King, Ontario raising families of our own. Jane & Larry were so much fun to be around but when the time came for Larry to relocate to B.C. we were sad to say “Good-bye” to our much beloved Forster Family. Larry’s passing is a great loss, especially for Jane. Please know I’m thinking of you in sharing your grief.
    Bob Sillcox

  • Allan Neale

    I was very sad to hear of Larry’s passing. He had a brilliant career as an engineer, both in Ontario and in British Columbia. He was also active in community service, particularly in his membership in Rotary International in Ontario and in BC. He will be especially remembered for his leadership in Rotary’s Youth Exchange program, to which he devoted countless hours and developed life-long friendships with youth around the world. Larry also held other leadership positions, including President, in three Rotary Clubs, including the Rotary Club of Victoria. He was a splendid example of Rotary’s motto of “Service Above Self” and he will be missed by us all. Larry and Jane were also avid supporters of the Pacific Opera reflecting their mutual appreciation of music. Sincere condolences to Jane, Catherine, John, and Melanie. Larry was the epitome of an outstanding Canadian citizen.

  • Laura Walsh

    Dear Jane and family,

    Deepest sympathies in your time of sorrow. I fondly remember Larry’s kindness, generosity and intellect from my time with BC Cancer Foundation. May his memory be a blessing


  • Milton James Barry

    We mourn with you upon the death of a lovely, good natured and funny man. We remember his great service to St. Paul’s Church in Lorne Park and support of us personally. As well we remember several warm and happy social visits with Larry and Jane.
    God bless you as a family, with love, Milton and Shirley Barry

  • Maury Van Vliet

    Larry was a thoughtful and well respected member of Rotary for many years.
    His was a voice worth listening to and his suggestions and opinions were always
    respected. His and Jane’s involvement with the Rotary International Student Exchange was an inspiration to everyone involved. Rest in Peace my friend.

  • Marilyn Pattison

    Dear Jane and family, I am so sorry for your loss. May your memories bring comfort. Fond regards, Marilyn Pattison

  • Peter and Carol Davy

    Carol and I were close friends of Larry and Jane for many many years and in various aspects of their lives, music, families, some business, and a deep friendship. Larry was an outstanding person and it was always a pleasure to be with him and Jane and we enjoyed so much our conversations on many subjects. He had many talents and his intelligence was stimulating. We are very sad to learn of his passing and feel honoured to be called a friend for so many years. We have not seen Jane and Larry for a few years and we send our heartfelt condolences to Jane and the family at this sad time. Love and best thoughts, Peter and Carol Davy

  • Gerald Pash

    With a history of being a Rotarian in Kingston, Port Arthur, and President of the Clarkson-Mississauga Club 1982-83, and then Kingston-Frontenac Rotary 1988-89, Larry Forster came to the Rotary Club of Victoria in September 1990. He served on the board of directors 1996-97 and was Vice-President 1997-98. He was then Director again 2007-08. A Paul Harris Fellow since 1996 and subsequently plus three, he is a Benefactor of the Rotary International Foundation. He and his wife Jane, who is also a Paul Harris Fellow, have quietly supported dozens of club projects. After more than a half century of service as a regular member, Larry Forster was named an honorary lifetime member of the Rotary club of Victoria in February of 2021. Condolences to all those close.

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