June 2, 1936 – June 3, 2022
at the age of 86 years:
His funeral will be held at Saint Joseph’s Catholic Church in Salmon Arm, BC on Monday June 13th at 9:00am
Peter Ereth Home Purves was born on June 2nd, 1936, in Lismore, N.S.W, Australia. He was the youngest child of Major William Purves and Robena Purves. He had a joyful childhood growing up with his sister ‘Billie’ in Australia, spending much time at the beach and in the surf. He attended an agricultural boarding school and then did his teacher’s training at Sydney Teacher’s College. After teaching for three years in Newcastle, Peter travelled to Canada and ended up teaching in Merritt, BC. It was there that he met Marie-Annette Boulanger. It was love at first sight.
They married in 1961 and began their new life together back in Australia. During their three years in New South Wales they had two children, Allan and Joanne. They returned to Merritt, where Peter was a favourite teacher and coach at the local high school. Their third child, Susan was born in Merritt and then the family moved to Salmon Arm in 1967, where John was born.
Peter continued his career in education for another 28 years, working in secondary and elementary schools, in special education, and in administration. Peter and Marie-Annette fostered children and adopted one, a six year old boy named Randy in 1978. Peter chose to be baptized in the Catholic Church when he was 39 years old. He proudly served St. Joseph’s Parish as a reader, a Confirmation teacher, a member of the Parish Council, and he helped with Bastian Place Communion service.
Peter had a profound love for his wife and his family. His interests were varied and deep, extending beyond not only children and teaching, but to sport, music, reading, dancing, poetry (both reading and writing it), and gardening. He achieved the completion of an Ironman Triathlon at age 66. He served God and his neighbours in a multitude of ways, such as coaching Masters Swim Club, teaching a blind friend to ride a tandem bike, and taking his adoring grandchildren camping.
He is survived by Marie-Annette, his beloved wife of 60 years, by his only sibling and dear sister Willena “Billie” Keegan of Toowoon Bay, NSW, and by his children: Allan and his wife Sandra, Joanne, Susan and her husband Marcel, John and his wife Liz, and Randy. As well, he is survived by 15 grandchildren (two of whom are named after him), and 13 great-grandchildren (the youngest of whom is also named after him) and numerous nephews and nieces, both in Australia and Canada. After a brief illness, Peter died on June 3rd, 2022, the day after his 86th birthday. His quiet confidence, teasing humour, and attentiveness to those around him will be dearly missed. His funeral will be held at Saint Joseph’s Catholic Church in Salmon Arm, BC on Monday June 13th at 9:00am.