CANNON, NORMAN THOMAS
1923 – 2008
It is with the greatest of love and respect that we announce the passing on of Norm Cannon in Shuswap Lake General Hospital. Norm fought his illness with courage and the quiet dignity that he showed throughout his whole life. He passed on surrounded by his loving wife, Jackie, their four children and their mates and with the amazing supportive love of his eleven grandchildren who were with him almost constantly on his last journey here on earth. They truly cherished their Tappa and they kept his hospital room full of joy and tears, and love and laughter and music.
Norm was born in Winnipeg, MB to parents who had moved to Canada from England. He had a very happy childhood and was much adored by his four older sisters and his brother. He moved with his parents to Ladner, BC when he was thirteen. He finished high school there and went to work for Overwaitea Foods, and worked for that company until he retired in 1976.
In 1951, Norm and Jackie were transferred to Salmon Arm where he became manager of the Overwaitea store. They thought they were coming to the end of the world and hoped they would be transferred to another branch before
too long, but all it took was one Shuswap summer to convince them that this was one of the greatest places on earth and as luck would have it, the store flourished and they never moved again. They felt blest to be able to bring up their family here, making so many good friends along the way. He retired when he was fifty-five and he and Jackie enjoyed his retirement years to the fullest. They traveled and spent their summers at their cabin on Shuswap Lake.
Norm was born with the God-given talent of music and he loved swing and jazz and played by ear although a sister tried to teach him, unsuccessfully, to read music. He started playing the piano with high school bands and then he bought a beautiful, old Conn saxophone second-hand and played for many dances in the Fraser Valley. At one of these dances, he met the young lady who was auditioning to be a vocalist with that band and so a beautiful love story was begun. Norm and Jackie were married in
1949 and had nearly fifty-nine years together. The thread of music was completely woven into their lives as the years passed. There were concerts, dances, Kinsmen and Kinette musical performances and, in later years, Norm sang with, and sometimes accompanied, the United Church choir, and was a charter member of the Salmon Arm Community Band. When he sat down at the piano and grabbed a handful of chords and played a tune, or when he picked up his sax and blew a mellow song, it was a wondrous thing to hear.
Norm was a quiet man but one who was always game for a good time. He often said the most important things in his life were his family, his work and music and even though he was a quiet, thoughtful person when he was with his family or in his store, or when he played his music, there was a brightness of life that surrounded him and it made this quiet man a very special person.
Celebrating his memory forever is his cherished wife and best friend, Jackie; two daughters, Nancy and Susan (Lorne); two sons, Greg (Tina) and Bruce (Debbie), grandchildren Todd, Ryan, Greg, Chris, Aaron, Kailey, Robbi, Tessa, Christian, Becky, Noelle and great-grandson, Malachi. He is also fondly remembered by his sister, Doris; sister-in-law, Margaret; brother-in-law, Jack (Mary) and many nieces and nephews who thought the world of their Uncle Norm.
The Celebration of Norm’s life will be held at the First United Church, Salmon Arm on Saturday, June 21, 2008 at 11:00 a.m.
Donations in memory of Norm may be made to the Second Harvest, PO Box 1062, Salmon Arm, BC, V1E 4P2 or to the Alzheimer’s Society of BC, Suite 300, 828 West 8th Avenue, Vancouver, BC, V5Z 1E2.
Condolences may be sent to
Arrangements are in the care of Bowers Funeral Home, Salmon Arm.