It is with sadness that we announce the passing of (Eldin) Keith McKibben, at the age of 83, on August 23, 2023. He was born in Dawson Creek on January 8, 1940 - the eldest child of Ruth (Fellers) and Clarence McKibben.
Keith had a passion for nature and the outdoors, enjoying fly-fishing, hunting, horseback riding, skiing, and snowshoeing. In the winter he spent many hours tying flies. Later in life, he became more involved with woodworking, creating beautiful furniture from cedar. Keith avoided crowds, preferring to spend time with close friends and family. He was a man of great integrity, and a gifted storyteller, with a dry sense of humour, and a natural ability to entertain.
As a young man, he did farm work in the summer and worked at a sawmill in the winter - keeping the books on species and quantities of trees cut, as well as skidding logs with horses; a job for which he needed to be up early each morning in the bitter cold to feed and harness the animals. He received his welding certification at NAIT, which led to many years of welding and fabricating at McCoy’s. Later, Keith worked for the City of Dawson Creek, doing maintenance as a jack-of-all trades. Over the years, many commented that he could build or fix almost anything.
In September of 1963, Keith met Cathy and, for their first date, they attended a dance together. This marked the beginning of many fun-filled years of dancing. They were married 10 months later, on July 18th, 1964, and had three children. Keith entertained the kids with his ability to mimic animal calls, identify animal tracks, and whittle whistles out of willow branches. They often camped, fished, and rode horses together as a family.
Keith was an avid reader of both fiction and non-fiction. He had a keen interest in history and researched his family’s origins in Scotland. A highlight was travelling to Scotland for his 25th wedding anniversary.
Keith retired at the age of 60 and continued to enjoy the outdoors and engage in woodworking. He and Cathy enjoyed their travels immensely. They journeyed to the Maritimes post-retirement and continued to travel yearly to places such as Alaska, the Yukon, and Bella Coola to camp and fish. These adventures provided wonderful memories and stories in the years to come.
Keith will be greatly missed by his wife Cathy, his children, Shaun (Stella) McKibben, Brent (Karen) McKibben, Laureen (Dale) Holloway, his grandsons, Aidan, Beckett, Daxton, Declan, and Spencer, as well as his siblings Carol (Charlie) Hamilton, Melvina (David) Lane, Gary Tenborg, Henrietta Sluggett, Dorothy Guest, and Alan Tenborg, and his in-laws, Maurine Hatch, Barbara (Val) Heckrodt and Elaine Hatch.
No formal service will be held at Keith’s request. A private celebration of life will be held at a later date. Donations may be made in memory of Keith to “A Simple Leaf”, a program to support the care and comfort of patients at the Dawson Creek and District Hospital (https://dchospitalfoundation.ca/fundraiser-in-hospital/a-simple-leaf/). Any amount is appreciated and will be pooled to leave a “A Loving Legacy” leaf for Keith on the wall of the Cancer Unit.
For the full obituary, with photos, please go to www.reynars.com