Howard Koons

July 19, 1946 - October 20, 2023

In Loving Memory

Howard Koons

Howard Koons took his final motorbike ride in the bright sunshine on October 20th, 2023 at the age of 77 down a winding Okanagan road surrounded by the fall colours. Howard will be lovingly remembered by his wife, Heather, and his three daughters, Kim, Kyla (Darren) and Kristi (Dwight), his grandchildren, Cordell (Caitlynn), Nathan (Olivia), Keeley, Hannah (Joel), Marley, Dalin, Megan, Paxton, Dylan, Georgia, Jasper, Garnet and great-grandchild, Zev, as well as his extended family and many friends. He was a man with a generous heart and a ‘can-do’ attitude who loved his family fiercely and lived without regret.

The youngest of four, Howard was born in Swan River, MB, on July 19th, 1946 to Charlotte Dorothy and Arnold Almeron Koons. He grew up in Minitonas at a time when friends became family and was often found chasing after his sisters, Bonnie and Marilyn, and close family friend, Pat Maksymchuk.

As a teenager, he struck out on his own and moved to the bustling northern town of Thompson, MB to find his fame and fortune. He worked various jobs selling magazines, driving gravel trucks, and working as a mechanic. Strolling through the mall one day, he bumped into a tall, gorgeous girl who, after only a month, agreed to become his wife.

Howard and Heather were married on June 1st, 1968 and raised their girls in Thompson. They owned and operated the Motel Shell service station and were very involved in their community. His girls have many fond memories of their dad at the stock car races, Kinsmen Winter Carnival, Mystery Mountain Ski Hill, and local golf and curling clubs. They spent their summers travelling the country by motorhome and their winters skiing and snowmobiling. The house was often filled with family and friends enjoying a meal, playing cards, and sharing love and laughter.

In 1998, Howard and Heather moved to Coldstream, BC and operated three Shell service stations in Vernon and Lumby. Howard quickly met new friends at local golf courses and the Lumby Curling Club. As he transitioned into retirement, Heather worked hard to keep him busy. When Howard wasn’t renovating bathrooms for Heather’s friends or popping in to check on his sister-in-law, Elizabeth, he was running errands in his truck, reading novels, or seeing the countryside on his motorbike. Over the last 20 years, Howard and his brother-in-law, Wayne, put an average of 25 000 km on their bikes every summer. When it was too cold to ride, Howard packed his tools into his truck and headed to the girls’ homes to help with various home improvement projects.

Over the next few days, you may hear people say that he died doing what he loved, but Howard found happiness in so many things. Can anyone remember him ever being in a bad mood? Every challenge in life was an oppourtunity for Howard; he rarely got frustrated and would work long hours until the job was done. He loved playing Rummy, visiting with family and friends, driving his truck, tinkering, fixing, cleaning, organizing, and painting things red. Howard was a remarkable man of integrity, generosity, kindness, and good humour. His life’s purpose was to leave every person and every situation a little better and a little brighter. Howard was always putting the needs and comfort of others before himself. When asked “How is your day?”, he would respond with a “right on”, utter a jovial “hundred per” or flash them an exuberant ‘thumbs-up’.

This past June, Howard organized a 55th wedding anniversary celebration for Heather at a fancy hotel in Calgary. The two of them and their three daughters enjoyed a heartfelt evening with a lovely supper, a dip in the pool, card games, drinks, and snacks. It was the last time they were all together – Howard conveyed his happiness with the course of his life and his pride in his girls.

The service will be held at 3 pm on Sunday October 29th at the Coldstream Community Hall (9909 Kalamalka Road, Coldstream BC) with a reception to follow. Howard loved his plaid button-ups and, in honour of him, we welcome you to wear a plaid shirt to the service.

Zoom Meeting ID: 858 4764 2049

Please email Heather at [email protected] for any additional information.

Arrangements entrusted to

Cypress Funeral & Cremation Services 250-558-0866

Condolences may be expressed to the family by phone or email through Cypress Funeral & Cremation Services:

T: 250-558-0866

4417 29th St,
Vernon, BC V1T 5B7

E: [email protected]

Leave a comment

Comments: 49

  1. Nadine & Dave Trumbley says:

    We are certainly thinking of you as you navigate through such a difficult time. Deepest condolences to your loving family. Hugs,
    Nadine & Dave Trumbley

  2. Pat McKinley says:

    Oh Heather & family, I’m so sorry to hear of Howard’s passing. I have so many great memories of our times together, in particular our summer at Mystery Lake in 1970. I’ll be thinking of you all.

  3. Tanis Clarkson says:

    I remember riding in the motor home with Mr. Koons for the RCMP run for cancer, he always made everyone laugh and had a lot of words of wisdom! Condolences to Mrs. Koons and his family.

  4. Bernice Knee says:

    So sorry to hear of Howard’s passing Heather. Sending you my sincere condolences. God’s peace.

  5. Bernice Knee says:

    So sorry to hear of Howard’s passing Heather. Sending you my sincere condolences. God’s peace.

  6. Carrol Thompson says:

    Heather and families
    So sorry to hear.
    Condolences to you and your families

  7. Ken and Carole Lee says:

    Our hearts are with you all…

  8. Elaine Beavis says:

    Dear Heather and girls:
    Howard was an amazing man and an even better friend. My family was lucky to know him all those Kin years in Thompson!!
    Love Elaine

  9. Barbara Smith says:

    So very sorry this happened, sending love and hugs to Heather and family.

  10. Rosalia Rosteski says:

    Heather.and family so sorry for your loss our prayers and thoughts are with you all
    I remembered Howard sitting at the coffee club table at the mystery lake every day Rest in peace Howard

  11. Rosalia Rosteski says:

    Heather.and family so sorry for your loss our prayers and thoughts are with you all
    I remembered Howard sitting at the coffee club table at the mystery lake every day Rest in peace Howard

  12. Gary Shoemaker says:

    Howard was the most positive person I have ever met and will be missed by all that knew him. He was a fellow Kinsman and always had a smile and a kind word for everyone. I will remember him as someone who brought smiles and happiness to all his many friends. My condolences to Heather and family

    RIP old friend

  13. Hugh and Shelley Mcdonald says:

    Dearest Heather and family, what a beautiful picture and write up on Howard, we thoroughly enjoyed reading it and although we didn’t know him well, (we mostly knew about him by the many many good reports from you and the friends) we certainly feel so now. It gave us the true sense of the type of person he was. We know he was a lovely husband and awesome father to the girls. A real treasure! Our heartfelt condolences to you Heather and all the family.
    Job 14:14 & 15

  14. Susan Edelman (Shoemaker0 says:

    Heather and family words cannot express how sorry I am for you loss. We spent many years of fun together in Thompson and I will never forget those years. Howard was such a fun loving and helpful guy. I will never forget his sense of humor. He was the best and will be missed. Always remember the good times.

  15. Susan Metcalfe says:

    Heather, Kyla, Kristi & Kim :
    Hello ladies. What a wonderful man you are celebrating on Sunday! The pain and sadness you are struggling through right now cannot be fully appreciated by anyone but you yourselves. Please be patient with the friends who love you and forgive our often clumsy attempts to “make you feel better” It is just really difficult to know what to say or do when we know darn well that nothing is really gonna’ cut it. Time will be your greatest comforter.

  16. Angele Bartlett (Lavoie) says:

    Heather and girls,
    We are absolutely heartbroken for you and your family. Thinking of you all at this very difficult time.
    Love Angele Bartlett and Alice Lavoie

  17. Richard Bernard Wright says:

    Howard and I were roommates in Thompson when we shared a basement suite as young bachelors.He worked for our landlord at Steelgas and I worked for INCO. He came to Summerland a few years back when I was house sitting for my in-laws.Condolences to Heather and their girls.Bernie Wright.

  18. Rick & Annette Huxter says:

    Heather & family,

    So sorry to hear of your loss. We have lots of memories of Thompson and Rick’s time at Motel shell.
    Our thoughts & prayers are with you all.

  19. John & Tammy Howatt says:

    Heather – Tammy and I were so sorry to get this news via Bob Beavis.

    Those Kin years were good times, and we kept up with your going- on’s via Bob & Linda.

    We always enjoyed being with you and Howard.

    Take care of yourself. Our thoughts are with you and your family.


  20. Jackie and Gordon Greig says:

    Hi Heather, Kim, Kyla and Kristi.
    Our deepest condolences. This was heartbreaking news. Having grown up with Howard and his family living down the road, I know full well his kind loving nature. It was a family trait instilled by his parents and carried on by him and his siblings. Re-connecting later in life with you folks in Thompson was a bonus for Jackie and I. Many good times with you to remember.

    Love, Jackie and Gord

  21. Claudette says:

    Deepest condolences to Heather,Kim,Kyla and Kristi and all the many many friends.

  22. Colleen Smook says:

    Your Family were great ambassadors of Thompson. Howard was always able to bring a room or event alive.♥️. Hugs to Heather and the girls♥️♥️♥️♥️

  23. Tim Bolton says:

    So sad to hear. Sincere condolences to Howard’s family. Back in my Thompson days Howard was a dear friend. Many great times and memories. Rest in peace my friend.

  24. Doug says:

    Wow so sorry for you lose what a great man always treated me so good

  25. LaRhonda Mazereeuw says:

    Howard and Heather are wonderful people and very loving friends. They are a caring couple who are tireless in helping others. You can call either of them at any time and they both will help in any way they can. I love them both and will never forget the smile Howard always wore on his face and his positive nature. He will be missed terribly.

    I look forward to the day when Howard, as well as all our family and friends who have passed, wake up from their death-like sleep. We will have a huge banquet set up for all to enjoy and celebrate.

    Death was never a part of Gods original plan for humans, and happily, one day it will be no more. What a wonderful world it will be when we all live forever in a beautiful paradise with no more dying or sadness.

    Until we meet again…
    LaRhonda & Pieter

  26. Gwen Whitmore says:

    Deepest sympathy to Heather, the girls and the rest of the family. He was a great guy!

  27. Garnet Burton says:

    Shirley and I send our sincerest condolances to you, Heather, Kim, Kyla, and Kristi.
    I will always and often think about my best lifetime friend, Howard and reminise in my mind about our many experiences and adventures from back in Minitonas, Thompson and the Okanagan.
    He will be sadly missed by family as well as me and his many friends of which Howard meant so much.
    Garnet & Shirley

  28. Richard Horton says:

    Our heartfelt condolences to you. It has been a while but I hope that you know that there are friends who care for you, even if it has been years. You have my email now if you ever want to contact me, feel free, just like the old days at CHTM. Stay well.

  29. Jeff and Marie Condon says:

    We are sending our heartfelt condolences to your family during this difficult time. We only met Howard a couple of times and were treated like family. Please know our thoughts and prayers are with you. 🙏💙

  30. Ray Cheetham says:

    My deepest condolences to all the family. I have many fond memories of Howard.

  31. John and Shirley Tomashewsky says:

    Passing our condolences to you Heather and family. We’ve been gone since 99 and still remember yous. May he rest in peace.

  32. Donna Chene says:

    My heart goes out to your family for your loss. I have fond memories growing up with Kyla and spending time at the Koons house. Wishing you comfort and lots of love at this time of sorrow. ❤️

  33. Fred Burton says:

    My deepest condolences, Heather and family. I am so sorry to hear of Howard’s passing.

  34. Marianne Palagonia says:

    Remembering Howard in his vacation mode…always smiling.. relaxing in shorts and open shirt in the sun… twinkling blue eyes..always ready with a quick witty response…so hard working…such a giving man.. whenever I’d call Heather he’d chuckle and say “hello Phoenix”…will miss his calm, loving , fun ways.

  35. Margo Wilson says:

    What sad news. Howard was indeed a much loved man. He will be missed by all who knew him and especially by his family. My sincere condolences to you all. Thinking of you all with love.

  36. Barbara Kubala says:

    So sorry to hear of Howard’s passing Heather.
    Condolences to you and your families!


  37. Tina Reekie says:

    Sending our hugs and prayers.
    Sorry for your loss.
    Keep your family in our thoughts.
    Tina and Andrew Reekie

  38. Garry and Gaile Sagert says:

    Heather and Family, we are so very sorry to hear that Howard has crossed over to the Otherside.
    Our most sincere condolences to you and all your Family.
    Thinking of you all with much love as your angels surround you,
    Garry and Gaile

  39. Larry and Judy Galick says:

    To Dear Heather, girls and families , we were so sorry to hear of our longtime friend’s passing, Howard was a true friend to anyone who he come in contact with. So mny memories to love and cherish from our Kin years, Special Holidays, and the everyday meetings .Love and Hugs, Larry and Judy Galick

  40. Mike and Ev Kirk says:

    Heather, and family, we are so sorry to hear of Howard’s passing. He was such an “upbeat” guy. When I (Ev) worked at the Lavington Market, we would often have quick chats when he came in. Thinking of you.

  41. Monica (Buller) Bock says:

    What a shock to hear that Howard has died. You are in my thoughts as your family grieves his death with the full range of emotions that rise to the surface with grief. I have fond memories of your family. I remember one of my first jobs was at your Motel Shell gas station in Thompson. Sending love and hugs. 💞

  42. George Greig says:

    HOWARD. What a people-loving, fun-loving guy! When Howard left a party, you knew it was over. He was the last one to quit, whether it was partying or working. Just ask any of his Kinsmen friends who tried to keep up with him. People gravitated to him because of his easy going, positive, helpful and happy attitude. He was very proud of his family: wife, children and spouses, grandchildren and great-grandchildren. My heart feels sorrow for you, Heather, Kim, Kyla and Kristi.

  43. Karen Buller says:

    It was so good, Heather, to hear your children speak so highly of their dad. The pictures and the accompanying music gave us an insiders view, a wonderful honouring of Howard!
    I can see that you are surrounded by the love of family and friends, Heather. And
    I am so sorry for your loss.
    Your family’s business gave Christine and Monica their first jobs and life long friendships. You and Howard were great to work for! 🥳

  44. Christine Buller says:

    So many memories of being around Howard and Heather. Working at Shell, first in the back cleaning cars and the shop after hours, polishing floors, being taught by Heather and Howard how to give Full Service with a Smile at Shell in brown snow suits at minus 30C, suppers around their dinner table, riding back together from Mystery Mountain ski hill, lying awake on the deck until the sun rose with Kyla and our friends, parties in the hot tub, driving from Mid Lake when I was super sick, hanging out at Wellman Lake, grad pictures, sneaking boyfriends in the basement …and then out…and then getting caught. My Highschool years were spent woven with your family. I felt accepted and loved. My heart is with you all as you process life without Howard there. He will be missed.

  45. Bob Beavis says:

    Appreciated being able to sit in for the memorial service. Enjoyed seeing the girls honor their dad and watching the pictorial story.

    So many memories of times with the Koons family going back over the years. From trailer camping to Howard’s tremendous help in building our log home, to having Howard, Wayne & Garnet drop in for a quick visit during their bike tour of the U.S. to having Howard/Heather spend some quality time with us on their visit to our home & some of the sights in Costa Rica.

    Howard was always there, for fun, for support and every aspect one wants in a true friend. He was one of the first people I met after moving to Thompson and introducing me to many Kinsmen friends. He serviced our vehicles and occasionally rescued us when mechanical issues arose. He was first to pilot the boat I bought and we shared some boating adventures.

    Howard & Heather are a wonderful couple who clearly showed what a strong marriage looks like. I’ve long admired and appreciated their unconditional friendship. I wish Heather & the family strength in the time ahead. A big piece of the family has left but Howard’s influence will remain in their hearts as well as mine. Bless you all.

  46. Anne , Blair Alderson says:

    My Dear Heather and Family, it is with great sadness that I have to express our condolences to all off you.
    Our thoughts and prayers are with you all. Howard was a great Man, Husband, Father and Friend . I have
    always said that Thompson lost a great couple when you left. You both did so much for are community.
    We have so many good memories of Howard , from a working relationship that grew into friendships. So
    many good times. Andrea enjoy working at Motel Shell, her first job and still talks about the values you
    both taught her. They also say that they love it when Uncle Howard came over to our house late at night
    cause he would come and get us out off bed to play. I am sure he did the same to his Grandchildren.
    Again Heather we are so sorry for your loss. May God Bless you and the girls. Lots of love .Anne & Blair.

  47. Colleen Elder says:

    Your obit for Howard explains him to a T. I can see him replying with a “right on” when asked how his day was. He always kept busy and loved his family so much!! Although we only met, maybe 15 years ago in Roblin, it seemed like he was a life long friend. I will always hold a place in my heart for him. Take care Heather, Kim, Kyla and Kristi and your whole family.

  48. Volker Beckmann says:

    Very shocked and saddened to hear this news. Howard fixed my 1982 Toyota Supra several times at Motel Shell. Was always a pleasure dealing with him and appreciated his community efforts to improve Thompson. All my best to Heather and the girls. All the best to you all!

  49. sydney mckay says:

    Sending condolences to Heather and family. Now and again I would think of you and Howard wondering where you would. then of course I would think of Charlie. Heather sending prayers and a HUG

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