June 19, 1959 – May 31, 2019
It is with heavy hearts that we announce the passing of Paul Douglas Sparling, of Marsh Lake, YT.
Paul died suddenly, but peacefully on May 31, 2019 from complications of cancer.
Born in Winnipeg, June 19, 1959, Paul graduated from Vincent Massey Collegiate and received a Fish and Wildlife Diploma from Lethbridge Community College.
His summers spent at the family cabin on Florence Lake and his interest in all things wild led him north where he worked summer jobs in York Factory, MB and the NWT. Paul met Karla, the love of his life, at the Winnipeg Folk Festival, and together with friends Mark and Brad, moved to the Yukon, built a home and raised a family.
Paul had a passion for the environment and especially liked fish. He will be remembered by many, in the Western Arctic, for his numerous field projects, as well as his many projects throughout the Yukon. His latest endeavour was helping to coordinate the first ever community owned fishing/monitoring plan of the new Tuk-Inuvik highway.
Paul gave back to his community in many ways. He served 15 years on the Marsh Lake Volunteer Ambulance and Fire Department. He carved many snow polar bear mascots for the Marsh Lake Ski Loppet. Even at -35, he was out till late carving the bear, even if the event itself would later be cancelled due to the cold. Whether at Canada Day celebrations, Friday night dinners at the Community Center or Sunday brunches, most everyone will have enjoyed one of his perfectly cooked steaks or eggs benny. His exuberance at Winter Solstice with his effigies, fireworks and rantings are legend.
Paul relished the hours spent in his shop, carving and playing music with his friends. He cherished his annual brothers ski trips. He loved to share his vast knowledge of everything and all, with anyone who would listen. Paul had an infectious cheerfulness and sense of humour that made everyone at ease. He will certainly be remembered for living like The Queen with his “Lust for Life!” He was a man rich in life.
Paul loved his family and his many friends dearly. He will be greatly missed by his spouse Karla and children Finley (Erin) and Lizzy, his mother Barb Sparling, brothers Jim (Denise), Thom (Carole) and John (Andrea) and by his nieces and nephews Alexander, Anika, Declan, Rowan and Shea.
Paul’s family is grateful for the exceptional care he received at Whitehorse General Hospital, as well as the BC cancer agency.
A celebration of his life will be held at 3 pm, Saturday, June 29 at lot 30, Doremann Drive, Judas Creek Subdivision. All are welcome. Please bring a story or a song and wear your most colourful shirt.
Donations may be made in his memory to the Canadian Cancer Society or other organizations specializing in Melanoma research.
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