May 25, 1954 – May 25, 2022
Philip Purnell, of Gabriola Island, passed away on May 25, 2022 in Victoria, British Columbia, in the company of his loving family. Philip was born May 25, 1954 in Crawley, West Sussex, England, to Joseph Frederick Purnell and Lillian Purnell (Kyle), a brother for Brian and Jennifer.
Philip joined the Sea Cadets as a youngster and enlisted in the British Army at eighteen. He was later posted to Germany where he, his first wife and young family spent six years. Philip’s children fondly remember canal boat adventures, camping trips and “We’re not lost. We’re just taking the scenic route.”
In November, 1988 the Purnells sold their home in England and moved to Edmonton, Alberta to start a new life. Philip had found his niche in sales and personnel recruiting, specifically in IT and engineering, and worked in these fields, very successfully, for over 30 years.
While based in Calgary and ever an optimistic entrepreneur, he commuted on weekends and developed and ran a mini-golf and internet café in Black Creek, BC. Never one to be idle, in retirement he embraced the burgeoning world of pickleball. He played several times a week, favouring outdoor courts and started his company ‘Racketeer Sports’, selling all things pickleball.
Philip had an adventurous soul and his intelligence, sense of humour and love for his family was ever present. Philip treasured old friends and made a point to always stay in touch. He spoke with his adult children often and always ended the call with, “I love you.”
He is survived and loved by his wife, Janet Miller; his daughters, Elizabeth Anne Faires (Steph), Alexandra Rebecca Roberts (Ashley) and son, Philip Andrew Purnell; step-children, Emma Miller Tansley and Joel Miller Tansley; grandchildren, Christopher, Jordan, Katherine and Meghan Wall, Heidi and Faydra Anderson, Emily and Tessa Roberts; and great granddaughter Violet. Philip was enormously proud to have three grandchildren enlisted in the Royal Canadian Air Force.
Janet and Philip were married in Pemberton in 2008; honeymooned in Cuba and made many trips to both coasts of Mexico. They lived in Victoria, Black Creek and Comox, finally settling on Gabriola Island in 2021. They spent summers on their seaside property in Nova Scotia and loved their view of the lighthouse, the sunsets and one hurricane at Sandy Point, Shelburne County.
Philip is forever loved and missed deeply. His cheerfulness, kindness and sense of honor lives on in the hearts of his family members and many friends.
A celebration of life will take place at Anderton Gardens in Comox from 4 – 6 pm on Thursday, June 16th, 2022. In lieu of flowers donations may be made to the Canadian Red Cross Ukraine Relief Fund.
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