Cornell, Roy Deveret

March 24, 1938 – June 27, 2023
at the age of 85 years:     

A celebration of life barbeque will be held at Bruce’s house in Cloverdale on August 19th.  At Roy’s request, there will be no formal ceremony but a time for people to get together, share stories, food and drink.  The house will be open to all of his friends from near and far from 3:00 until??  Please either email Laura ( or Bruce ( for his address.

Roy passed away on June 27, 2023 at the age of 85 years.  Roy was born on March 24, 1938 to Duffen Emerson Cornell and Idella Deveret Leard.  He went to elementary school at Edith Cavell Elementary in Vancouver where he met his lifelong friend Jim Reid.  Roy graduated from King Edward High School in 1956.  He went on to apprentice as a marine machinist and graduated in 1961 with top marks in Canada for his trade.

He began his working career at VM Dafoe’s at the age of 21 and retired there at the age of 73.  Our family would like to thank the Dafoe family for all their support of Roy and allowing him to live out his dream working there.  Roy often said it was not work but that he did something he loved every day there.  One of his proudest moments was being able to learn and begin using a CNC lathe to help automate some of the machining at VM Dafoe.

Roy married his high school sweetheart Shirley Ann Twaites on February 6, 1959 and they had two children:  Bruce Cornell (March 27, 1967) and Laura Cornell (September 3, 1968)

Roy also had a passion for being around sports.  Whether it was Bruce’s hockey, Laura’s swimming or helping ensure all the kids in the community had the opportunity to play, he dedicated his time to coaching, managing, mentoring and supporting youth in the Riley Park Community.

His passion for machining did not stop at VM Dafoe’s.   He had his own small machine shop in the basement and worked evenings helping doctors, inventors and manufacturers prototype and produce products in his tiny machine shop, from one of the first fully automated facial X-ray machines required by dentists, to bobbins for a local company, to small metal parts for electrical contractors and to Aqua Plus Toothbrushes, that small shop helped a lot of people.  He also had an eye for design and spent a lot of time later in life learning AutoCad and moving away from hand drawn blueprints.  If you could imagine it, Roy would find a way to make you a sample of it.

Roy talked fondly of all his lifelong friends from Edith Cavell Elementary and King Edward Secondary, stories of Jim and Zorka were some of his favourite to tell to his children.  He also loved to talk about the amazing people he met and volunteered with at Riley Park, South Van and Grandview Minor Hockey Associations.  All of you held a special place in his heart.  Vancouver was his home and you were part of his family.

Roy spent his final few years in the Shuswap, close to his daughter Laura and her family.  He enjoyed spending time with his grandkids and his great grandchild.  He could be seen driving around Sicamous with his beloved companion “Huggs” in the basket in the front of his scooter.

Roy was predeceased by his wife Shirley Ann Cornell.  He is survived by son Bruce (Laura) Cornell, daughter Laura (Fred) Johnston, sister-in-law Claudia Hill and family, grandchildren:  Amanda (Andrew) Tune and Zachary Johnston, Kris (Emma) and James Currie, Andrew Cornell and great granddaughter Alaina Rich.

He is forever remembered for his silly songs, sayings and “ditties.”

Dad you were loved and will be missed every day!


  1. Dear Laura, Bruce, and families,
    We want to extend our deepest sympathies to all of you on the sudden loss of your Dad. We are blessed to have
    him in our lives.
    Met Roy in grade 4 (1944) at Edith Cavell Elementary School and have been friends ever since.
    Roy met Shirley and I met Zorka in high school. We were best man at each others weddings, and traveled
    together many times over the years. What great memories.
    When Roy moved to Sicamous, we could not see each other but we spoke on the phone weekly.
    Good-bye dear friend. Thanks for the memories. We will miss you.
    Uncle Jim and Aunt Zorka

  2. Laura, Bruce and families,
    We want to extend our deepest sympathies to you all on the sudden loss of your Dad. We too are deeply saddened by the loss of “Uncle Roy”. He was one of a kind, and will forever be remembered by all who knew and loved him.
    I have so many fond memories of your Dad when I was growing up: from skating at 4 rinks ( his car trunk would always pop open when he drove over the tracks); to him fixing one of my sewing projects ( a snap needed to be removed by a machinist!), he and your mom attended my high school graduation ( my second set of parents!); and of course he did the toast to the bride at my wedding!
    I am so grateful that we got to have a few great visits and lunch dates with Uncle Roy over the past few years. I am also happy that he was able to keep in touch with my Dad and Mom right up until the end. My Dad is missing his best friend of over 70 years, more than we know!
    Uncle Roy will always hold a special place in our hearts and we will never forget him. I feel blessed to have had him in my life and I know that his very best qualities will live on in all of you! Sending hugs to you all❤️
    Dana ( Reid) & Jim Kocsis

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