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Gregg Metivier

May 15th, 1955 - May 15th, 2022
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 Gregg Metivier

May 15, 1955 – May 15, 2022

 

 

Gregg passed away peacefully at home on May 15th.  Gregg loved his life and the people in it, but sadly he couldn’t live with the agony of Parkinson’s any longer.  He courageously faced three excruciating Deep Brain Stimulation surgeries in hopes of being able to live a more ‘normal’ life but all the daily activities that he really enjoyed doing were still out of reach.  Losing his ability to communicate was very difficult.

 

Gregg moved to Vancouver from Montreal after he completed University.  One of the things he brought out with him was an old BMW motorcycle that was in parts.  After about 30 years of moving the boxes from home to home, he finally started assembling and restoring the motorcycle.  The time he spent on it and chatting online with other motorcycle restoration hobbyists brought him a lot of enjoyment and satisfaction.  He created a blog for the restoration which attracted a lot of followers.  He once said in jest “if only I could monetize the blog”. 

 

After the bike was finished, he loved riding around the Fraser Valley and doing day or early evening trips.  He went on a few road trips to the Interior, Vancouver Island and the Olympic Peninsula with a few guys which he said were some of the best times of his life.  The guys were wonderful in stopping when Gregg needed his meds to kick in and he really appreciated being included in these trips. 

 

Gregg loved music and playing his guitars.  He was always noodling and creating in his head.  He could sit for hours just playing.  He loved playing in bands and considered himself very fortunate to be allowed to play with a great group of guys locally.  Even when he struggled to play, they included him and that meant the world to him.

 

Gregg and I saw a lot of the world together.  We shared many great memories from trips to Mexico, Hawaii, Thailand, China, Spain,  France, Tanzania, Zanzibar and Turkey.  His travelling days really started though as a teenager when he hitchhiked around Europe.  That was in the days of hitchhiking around Europe on $10 per day.  He actually came home with money once.

 

Gregg loved being a Dad and raising Ryan.  He talked about falling in love with Ryan at first sight.  He had lots of great memories taking Ryan camping and fishing and Ryan still loves to do both.  There was something about a pet iguana in there too.  He was very proud of Ryan for the man he has become and for making Ryan’s partner Jessica and son Jaxson the main priorities in his life.   

 

Gregg was an entrepreneur to the core.  He said that he was a terrible employee and unemployable.  He owned a few different businesses – from a pump company to tech firms.  His last business was Bekke Systems – selling patio furniture to the hospitality industry.  He and his partner Dave Wang had a lot of fun systematizing the business and growing it.  Dave turned out to be not only a great business partner, but a great friend.  As Gregg’s Parkinson’s advanced, Dave filled in for Gregg more and more.  They both retired after selling the business to one of Gregg’s bandmates.

 

Everyone who met Gregg liked him. It seemed like everyone he met became a friend.  He was a genuine person who held life-long friendships.  He considered himself very fortunate to still have a close group of friends from elementary school days.  He also considered his Uncle Stu to be like a brother and got into all sorts of trouble with him after moving to Vancouver.  I believe there was a lot of beer and parties involved.

 

As a spouse, Gregg was the best ever.  He was supportive, loving and always up for whatever I wanted to do.  He made sure I knew that I was loved to bits and that he would always be there for me.   He taught me to be goofy. I used to tease him that he was actually only 8 years old.  We were best friends who loved each other every day.

 

At dinner on our last night together, I said ‘it would really be nice if you could send me a sign that you’ve found peace’.  I joked that maybe it could be a purple butterfly that was out of place somewhere.  He responded that he would come up with a sign that I would definitely recognize as being only from him.  At 8:50 pm on the night that he passed away, he sent me the sign.  All of a sudden the light above the special picture he bought that’s above the fireplace inexplicably turned on.  It was the perfect sign.  The picture meant a lot to both of us and I was so happy to know that everything was good with him and that he had found relief from his body.  It must have taken a lot of strength to keep that commitment to me, but that was Gregg. He always did his best to come through.

 

Ryan will be spreading some of Gregg’s ashes at their favourite camping and fishing spots, and the rest will be put directly into the ground at Heritage Gardens’ Willow Garden on 16th Avenue in Surrey.  At this point, I don’t know when that will be or what it will look like.  More information later.


Tributes

Lindy McKelvie
July 8th, 2022

Dear Gregg,

While our time as friends at Englesea was only a few years I will remember your bravery, tenacity, willingness to help others, your welcoming friendly manner and participation in everything going on despite the difficulty you endured living with Parkinsons disease. Most of all I remember your deep love for Susan and hers for you. I applaud you both for never giving up and pushing to live your best lives together for as long as possible. You were a force to be reckoned with my friend. Rest In Peace Gregg.

Lindy

Stuart Haines
June 27th, 2022
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A photo posted by Stuart Haines

Stuart Haines
June 27th, 2022

I'm sorry to have taken so long to post this tribute as I've thought long and hard as to what to say. I second all the sentiments posted already and now want to add my comments.
Two characteristics I've admired in Gregg over the years has been his intellect and mechanical ability. As far as intellect goes, he had a vast general and technical knowledge which he was able to articulate in a precise manner using few words.
And speaking of mechanical ability he once took two 3 series BMW's and cannibalized the best parts into one pristine machine painted in Ferrari red. Later he took various parts of a BMW old motorcycle and slowly lovingly reassembled them into a beautiful machine which he rode until Parkinson's prevented him.
Although I am Gregg's uncle I shall forever regard him as my younger brother. Our age difference was only 11 years.

Claudia Duffield
May 25th, 2022
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Gregg was the nicest and kindest brother-in-law to me. A transplant into this family, like myself, Gregg made all family gatherings extra fun either by playing music, or listening to everyone intently while asking great follow-up questions - he was the best listener!

It was wonderful to see how happy he and Susan were together and how they looked after each other. Gregg described one of his greatest joys was raising Ryan and he always had some great parenting insight and loved seeing and hearing about Maya's adventures - good listener!

I loved spoiling Gregg with extra scrumptious chocolate cakes for his birthday. I will keep making these every year to celebrate him.

Rob David
May 24th, 2022
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It was a privilege to have known Gregg these last few years. A fine musician and an even finer gentleman. A courageous soul who wouldn't allow his affliction to control his life. Rest in peace Gregg and I will think of you when I play my music. We had a candle burning in your honor today at band practice. Hope you saw it.
Rob David

Rob David
May 24th, 2022
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It was a privilege to have known Gregg these last few years. A fine musician and an even finer gentleman. A courageous soul who wouldn't allow his affliction to control his life. Rest in peace Gregg and I will think of you when I play my music. We had a candle burning in your honor today at band practice. Hope you saw it.
Rob David

Patty Randall
May 21st, 2022

Susan and family,
May 21, 2022

Gregg’s passing was absolutely heart-breaking. Yet, as we three chatted that week before as well as during your vacation months in Palm Springs this past winter, it was clear that the decision for Gregg did not mean that he have given up the fight, nor that he was not angry over the thief Parkinsons is, but that he had decided to accept and to be in full control of what was coming! Of course, no one was ready to let him go, but everyone close to him definitely supported his profound decision.

So many have loved you, Gregg, but none more than your wife, Susan.

I remember the first time Gregg and I met, around 2002 as Susan wanted her two best girlfriends to meet this new and obviously important man in her life. She had made reservations at a favorite restaurant, Tojo’s, and as we three gals sat laughing, sake in one hand, chopsticks in the other, Gregg arrived looking gorgeous with a biker’s helmet tucked under his arm, wearing a soft black leather jacket, plus a huge smile--OMG, we knew that evening that this couple had enormous potential for happiness. How right we were, decades later, Gregg remained that same man, beautiful, kind, patient, bright, gentle, caring and loving.

Thinking of you Gregg—today and tomorrow. Susan and I will tell stories and reminisce--thank you for all the memories over the years.

Ron and Hadrianna Thorpe
May 20th, 2022

We were so touched to read that beautiful heartfelt tribute to Greg.....our hearts go out to you and your family as you grieve for your loss. We loved that he sent you a sign that he is in a peaceful place what a powerful memory to keep close to your heart. Our loved ones will never be far away when we are blessed with so many memories.
Sincerely Ron and Hadrianna.

Mark and Debbie
May 20th, 2022

A wonderful tribute, Susan.

Friends since grade school. Many memories. Many, many laughs. We will miss you beyond words, Gregg.

-Mark and Debbie.

Salim Shivji
May 19th, 2022

An amazing individual who touched my life in a positive way. May his soul rest in eternal peace. Ameen.

Jean and Gill
May 19th, 2022

We were so sad to read this beautiful and heartfelt tribute to Gregg...although we knew he had Parkinson's and he was going downhill recently we had no idea that we would never see him again. When his birthday came up on Facebook, on Sunday I thought I must wish him a happy birthday next time I see him whipping through the complex on his red scooter with that big smile of his. Needless to say this did not happen.

Whether powered by his car, his motorbike, his scooter, his walker, or his own 2 feet, he was always on the move, determined to keep his life as normal as possible. We were inspired by his courage and determination not to let Parkinson's interfere.

We understand, now, that he had given it his all and this was his birthday wish and we are happy for him. May he rest in peace and enjoy all his pursuits effortlessly and share that happy smile so others can feel good as we did. He will be fondly remembered and missed by his neighbours here at Englesea.

We send big hugs and love to Susan and family who travelled this tough road with him and stood by him so lovingly.

Jean and Gill

denis mikolaycik
May 19th, 2022
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I met Gregg and Susan one eve at a mutual friend's house 5 years ago, and with a shared love of music
he joined our band and a friendship evolved.

We always had fun, and it was obvious how much it meant for us all to play when we could
and create and recreate song we loved.
Beside music, its fair to say we all learned perspective watching his struggle progress.

Brave and upbeat, he loved to let his guitar rip. You could tell that ear to ear smile was as
genuine as it gets.
Always in admiration of his courage, we all came to respect him and get to know the guy behind the illness.

We held and will hold him in in the highest regard; simply put, a good man with a full life.
The path Gregg was on with Parkinsons was endearing yet difficult to watch knowing the
furstration that he must have suffered.

During our last coffee meeting, when asked how he felt about his birthday wish, and he said empowered.
He was a trend setter in many ways, and this was no different. He was a no nonsense kind of guy.
He said he attacted accountant like types as he interacted best with straight shooters and matter of fact types.

He surrounded himself with good people, and leave behind a humble and provcative legacy.
I wish selfishly we could have known each other longer...in the good ol' days.
But guessing he wished for a few things too.

Denis on behalf of the band Flight Risk, condolances to Susan and his son.
He will be missed.

Salut Mon Amie et Bon Voyage ~
if there is a heaven, I hope to see ya there~

Dave Clayton
May 18th, 2022

My wife and I got to know Greg several years ago through Susan who I worked with at Phantom Screens.
At the time Greg was fairly early in his journey with Parkinson's, but it was clear to see he was determined to live his life to the fullest.
Greg to us embodied courage, wit and generosity. His love for Susan was always apparent and we always thought it was so wonderful they found each other.
We are enriched by having known Greg and count it a privilege to have shared in his life.
Much peace Greg, may you rest easy now.
Dave and Michelle Clayton

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