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career in criminal law. As the constraints and attendant pressures of billable
hours were foreign to Ken, he always had time to talk and to give practical
advice to young litigators, and he took great pride in seeing them become
Ken quietly gave money to charities and the impoverished, and he volunteered
with many organizations, including the Kiwanis House, an addictions
recovery centre in Kamloops and the Kamloops Ostomy Support
As with all of us, Ken was not without his flaws. His intractability could
be exasperating. If he said no to something, that was the end of it, and there
was nothing one could say to sway him. Almost every case of his went to
trial, and his refusal to make admissions on most files prolonged proceedings
But that stance stemmed largely from Ken’s ferocious advocacy. He
believed that everyone deserved the best possible defence, and if that
meant the Crown had to painstakingly prove every element of its case, no
matter how trivial, so be it.
Ken did not distinguish between clients. From the wealthiest paying
client to the poorest accused on legal aid, all were treated the same by Ken.
“Equal justice for everyone” was Ken’s guiding principle as a barrister.
In 2004 he was given the Legal Services Society Chair’s Award for Distinguished
Service in recognition of his outstanding work on behalf of those he
represented on legal aid.
But Ken was first and foremost a family man. He loved his wife and children
unconditionally, and his household was free of squabbles or strife. He
became a proud grandparent in 2010 with the arrival of Tina’s son, Jack.
Suzie’s daughter, Sophie, was born in 2015. His daughters texted photographs
of his grandchildren to him daily.
He travelled the world with his family, meticulously planning all holidays
and excursions. But he was happiest at home in the summertime, presiding
over his backyard swimming pool. With one of his trademark hats on
and a drink in his hand, Ken watched family and friends enjoy his hospitality
into the late evening hours.
Although he would never be mistaken for an elite athlete (vide his nickname),
Ken loved golf, skiing, biking, rafting and hiking. He played sports
solely for the camaraderie, exercise and fun—indeed, the manner in which
sports should be enjoyed, for those who are not professionals or aspiring
professionals. He was the rare honest golfer, insisting on finishing every
putt, and tracking his strokes according to the strict rules of the game, even
when his score stretched into double digits on individual holes, as it not