It is with heartfelt sorrow that we announce the passing of Robert Kelly Dahl on September 26, 2016 at Kelowna General Hospital. Kelly leaves behind his loving wife of 19 years Camilla, daughter Amy, son Jeremy, step-daughter Robyn (Derek) Sampson and little Avery who will miss her Papa Kelly so much. In addition, parents Robert and Margaret Dahl of Osoyoos, sister Patti (Ron) of Lacombe, AB along with nephew Christopher and niece Emily of Lacombe, AB. He will be truly missed by his black lab, beloved and faithful companion Meia. You rarely saw one without the other. Kelly is pre-deceased by his brother Mark.
Kelly grew up in a Military family where both his parents served. The military life took them to Alberta, Quebec, Germany, Arizona and Cold Lake, AB where he eventually graduated high school from Grand Centre High. Kelly was always an outdoor enthusiast. He loved the water, the mountains and had an incredible passion for downhill skiing. He could not be out-skied on the mountains. He worked as a ski instructor in Jasper where he became a Level 3 ski instructor with the Canadian Ski Instructor’s Alliance and eventually taught his whole family to be avid skiers. During his time in Jasper, Kelly worked in a local Japanese restaurant called Tokyo Tom’s where he learned some amazing culinary skills. He was always inventive and creative in the kitchen. While working in Jasper National Park, he decided to pursue a career as a National Park Warden so he enrolled at Lethbridge Community College Environmental Science Renewable Resource Management program in the fall of 1982. During his college years, he was employed as a Student Temporary Employment Program (STEP) officer with Alberta Fish & Wildlife and was posted in Nordegg and Valleyview in Alberta. It was during this timeframe that he recognized he wanted to become a Conservation Officer versus being a Park Warden. He preferred conservation over preservation. In 1986 Kelly was hired by the BC Ministry of Environment as a Conservation Officer and was initially posted in Chilliwack. While in Chilliwack, Kelly started to dabble in utilizing wildlife decoys as an enforcement tool and eventually became one of the go-to persons in the use of decoys for the province. His involvement and dedicated work in the Steelhead Society earned him the prestigious Cal Woods Award in 1988 given out by the BC Steelhead Society. This was one of Kelly’s most prized awards. After three years, Kelly took a promotion to Smithers in 1989 as the District Conservation Officer. Kelly had become a tenacious and determined field officer. While in Smithers, Kelly gained the reputation as a game warden who you didn’t want on your trail. In 1994, he was named Conservation Officer of the Year for outstanding service in the Conservation field; an award so deserving of his love for conservation. This was another award he cherished. Kelly met his wife Camilla Gale, a BC Environment office assistant, in Smithers and they were married in March 1997. In the summer of 1997 Kelly, Camilla, step-daughter Robyn and his faithful yellow lab Rocky moved to Kamloops. Kelly took on various CO roles in the Kamloops office. While in Kamloops, Kelly and Camilla increased their family size with Amy in 1998 and Jeremy in 2000. Kelly’s family was very important to him and everything he did and worked for was for his family. They held family season ski passes to Sunpeaks every year since moving to Kamloops and Kelly was always adamant the family skied together. While in Kamloops, Kelly took on various lead roles in many investigations and was called on throughout the country as an expert witness for many court cases. In 2014, Kelly became the lead investigator for the Mount Polley investigation which is the largest environmental investigation undertaken by the Conservation Officer Service. In 2015, he was appointed lead Inspector Officer in Charge for the Mount Polley task force with the Major Investigations Unit, a position he excelled in. His honour, integrity and meticulous work, led him to be highly respected by family, friends, co-workers and many provincial and federal departments throughout the province, country and parts of the US.
A Celebration of Life will be held Saturday, October 15, 2016 at 2:00 pm at the Summit Drive Church, 1975 Summit Drive, Kamloops.
Kelly had a nature you could not help but love, and a heart that was purer than gold. To those who knew him and loved him, the memory of Kelly will never grow dim.
In lieu of flowers, a bank account at Royal Bank of Canada – Kamloops (Sahali branch) has been set up for both Kelly’s children. Cheques may be made out to Amy Dahl and Jeremy Dahl. E-Transfers are also accepted at firstname.lastname@example.org. You may also choose to donate to the BC SPCA (Kamloops branch) in Kelly’s honor.
A huge and sincere Thank You to the staff in the ICU at both Royal Inland Hospital Kamloops and Kelowna General Hospital, Alternatives Funeral & Cremation services and the BC Conservation Officer service especially Mike Sanderson, close friend and co-worker to Kelly.