Ken “Sonny” Strader passed away peacefully at his home in Kitchener, BC on February 14, 2021 at the age of 77 years with his wife of 28 years, Gaye, by his side.
Ken was born on March 10, 1943 in Edson, Alberta to parents Russell and June (nee Rozander) Strader and grew up in the area around the Coal Branch. Ken settled in Calgary and joined the Calgary Police Service (CPS) in October 1965. He had three children: Leah, Tracey and Troy. Ken met Gaye Billington and they married in 1993, after he had retired as a Sergeant with CPS in May 1992. Together they moved to the farm outside Calgary at the end of 1996. Although “retired”, Ken continued working at local casinos as Security Manager for several years and then driving gravel trucks for a couple of local contracting companies. Family and friends were always welcome, and Ken considered his friends to be family. He kept an open door and helped many over the years. He and Gaye enjoyed camping in their motorhome around the Calgary area and then their fifth wheel down to Yuma, Arizona for 4 years for some of the winter months. After Gaye’s retirement in May 2015, they moved to an acreage in Kitchener, BC with their dog, Sadie, and cat, Mojo. Ken took great pride in making his yard immaculate and loved listening to the Goat River running through his back yard. Ken and Gaye joined the Creston New Horizon Seniors Society where Ken flipped many a pancake for the pancake breakfasts and danced or listened to the music provided at the monthly dances. For the past couple of years, Ken and Gaye went down to Palm Springs for a couple of winter months where Ken’s son, Troy, had moved in 2017. After Ken’s diagnosis of Cancer, he still enjoyed spending time with family and friends and making darn sure he maintained his yard. As the disease progressed, he maintained his social personality and always greeted family, friends, and care-workers with a joke and a smile. His family will miss his jokester sense of humor and goofy facial expressions (who can forget that slow, exaggerated rolling of his eyes). However, they are thankful that he is now pain-free and at peace.
Ken will be lovingly remembered by his wife Gaye; children Leah (Todd) Strader, Tracey Charest and Troy (Glorille) Strader; grandsons Tanner, Adam and Cole; sisters Colleen Zucht, Lorraine (Ted) Davis, and Shirley (Dan) Brown; brother Jack (Lynda) Strader; mother-in-law Lynne Billington; sisters-in-law Carey (Larry) Cameron, Wendy (Barry) Billington, and Allison (Greg) McCallum; brother-in-law Warren (Judy) Billington; Aunt Flo Rozander as well as numerous nieces and nephews.
Ken was predeceased by his father-in-law Hector Billington, brother-in-law Rod Zucht and ex father-in-law Bill Hamilton.
Many Thanks go out to Dr. D Hao and Chyanne at the Tom Baker Cancer Centre, Dr. K Lowden, Kayla, Shannon, Sue and Tanya of the Oncology Dept at the East Kootenay Regional Hospital, Dr. E Huettmeyer and Dr. S McKellar his family doctors, the Palliative Care Program (especially Robyn and Sheryl) in Creston for helping in the last few weeks, which allowed Ken to pass away at home as he wished. Thank you to our many Family and Friends who came and helped whenever they could and with everything that helped Ken rest easier when he could no longer get it done.
Due to COVID-19 restrictions, there will be no celebration of life service at this time.
Because of Ken’s love for animals and children, please send memorial donations to any local SPCA (animal shelter), Creston Pet Adoption and Welfare Society (PAWS) 2805 Lower Wynndel Road, Creston, BC V0B 1G8, Children’s hospital or the Creston New Horizon Seniors Society, 1304 10th Ave North, Creston, BC V0B 1G6.