Dennis passed away peacefully September 8, 2021, at home following an enjoyable and productive day in the garden. Predeceased by his parents Bill and Doris Sanders and his brother Norm Sanders. Dennis was born at the Royal Jubilee Hospital on July 24, 1942. The family lived in the vibrant James Island community in North Saanich, where his father worked for Canadian Industries Ltd. (CIL). When his brother Norm reached high school age in 1944, the family moved to Saanich and built their home on Reynolds Road. The community at that time was open fields, orchards, Borden’s Farm, and several wineries. It was a carefree childhood filled with adventures. He would venture off for the day, experience trains arriving with grapes for the wineries, deliveries to Borden’s and he would often go to Pendray Farms on Saanich Road with the Ridout Brothers. He learned to work hard, experience life, operate tractors and machinery, milk cows and enjoy the basics of life. These early roots imbedded his lifetime friendship with the Pendray, Ridout, and Borden families.
Dennis attended Cloverdale Elementary School, SJ Willis Junior High School and graduated from Mt. View High School in 1962. Following graduation at the encouragement of his father he began a machinist apprenticeship at Ramsey Machine Shop. However, the call of Pendray’s dairy farm on Blenkinsop Road was far more appealing.
Dennis married, Vicki Wright, that girl from the other end of Reynolds Road. With marriage and the addition of three children; Marnie Lynn, Wayde and Denise, Dennis resumed his machinist career. He completed his machinist’s apprenticeship with MacKay-Cormack Ltd. on January 30, 1970, followed up with Marine Engineer certification. Thus, started a lifetime career in the maritime industry with Island Tug and Barge Ltd. Over the years the company changed owners and names to Genstar, Seaspan, and the Washington Marine Group. He enjoyed eight years experience working for Seaspan Shipyard in North Vancouver. He wrapped up his 50-year career working as barge inspector.
Dennis is survived by his wife Vicki Lynn; two daughters and sons-in-law, Marnie Lynn (Ron) Hollingsworth; Denise (Chad) Wood; son and daughter-in- law, Wayde (Tina) Sanders; six grandchildren Austyn (Ryan) Pielle; Bayley and Cayce Hollingsworth; Evan and Ruby Sanders; T’airah and Jeff Dunlop; sisters-in-law and brothers-in-law: Jo-Ann and George Gurney; Fred Wright; Geri Sanders; nieces and nephews; Mitchell Taylor; Shari and Grant Sanders; Richard, Lyle, Russell, and Blair Gurney; Brent, Jo-Ann, and Kyle Wright.
In retirement Dennis “reinvented” himself. He joined Lake Hill Lawn Bowling Club. He loved the winter card games. Every day started for him at 5am at the “Golden Arches” for coffee with friends. His calendar was full of lunches with fellow retirees and childhood friends. He always had a pocket full of dog treats and was well loved by his four-legged friends. Although not a computer user, Dennis embraced texting with a passion. Not only was there text but emoji’s too and kept in touch regularly to stay connected with friends and family.
He was always in great demand to help out with his little van with WWII trailer in tow. Always agreeable and ready to give a hand. Dennis will be missed dearly and remembered fondly by all who knew and loved him.
Subject to COVID regulations a private celebration of life will be held. Memorial donations can be made to the charity of your choice.
Condolences may be offered to the family below.
Norm Chouinard and Carol Thibault
Barb Handel Jacobs