ROSS, John

With a deep sense of sorrow and loss, we announce the death of John Ross on November 25th, 2021.

John was born to Luella and Jack Ross on January 2nd, 1945, in Killarney, MB. John and Helen were married in 1963. After three years working at Inco in Thompson, MB they moved to Edmonton, AB where John attended NAIT. In 1970, he graduated with a degree in Instrumentation Technology. Shortly thereafter, John began a successful career in sales with Spartan Controls. He was a member of the Instrument Society of America throughout his career. After twenty-seven years he retired from what John described as, “the best company in Canada”.

John was proud to be a member of the Edmonton Gyro club for 39 years. He and Helen enjoyed the comradery, conventions and many lasting friendships forged. John was a member of the Canadian Club and Dayspring Presbyterian Church. He volunteered time at his church, the Christmas Bureau and Habitat for Humanity.

Music was an integral part of John’s life. In the early 1980’s, John began collecting and restoring Wurlitzer, Rock-Ola and Seeburg Jukeboxes. He was a member of the Wild Rose Collectors Society. John developed numerous friendships over the years with others who shared his love of music.

John’s passion for outdoor adventures included hiking, canoeing, kayaking, downhill skiing, horseback riding and cycling. In 2003 he bicycled across Canada with Tour Du Canada. In 2008, he cycled the Orient Express route, from Paris to Instanbul. He enjoyed numerous river trips, including the Tatshenshini, Nahanni and the Grand Canyon. He was a member of the Rocky Mountain Seniors Ski Club and Skyline Hikers.

John and Helen were privileged to travel extensively. Egypt, Turkey, South America, Europe and the French Polynesian Islands were some of their favourite destinations. Most treasured of all was time spent with family skiing at Big White and vacationing at their cottage in Killarney.

John will be lovingly remembered and missed by his wife of 58 years, Helen, his daughter, Lela Marie, son David (Shalyn), grandchildren, Madison, Michelle, Brooks, Brian and Malcolm, great-grandson, William, John’s sisters Shirley and Vivian (Larry) sister-in-law, Lela (Dennis) and extended family and friends. John was predeceased by his granddaughter, Peyton in 2020.

The family wishes to express our sincere thanks to Dr. Huot and the entire team on the Palliative Care Unit at the Grey Nun’s Hospital. We will be forever grateful for their loving and compassionate care during the last four weeks of John’s life.

A private memorial service will be held in John’s honour on December 12th at 1 p.m. Due to current Covid-19 restrictions, attendance is by invitation only. For those wanting to watch the service online please do so on the following link:

In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made to The Edmonton Community Foundation, Ross, John – Edmonton Community Foundation (, with contributions directed to the GYRO Club of Edmonton Fund.

It is with much love and gratitude for a life well-lived that we say farewell to a kind and generous man, loved by so many. Rest in peace, John. You will live in our hearts forever.

Serenity Funeral Service – South
780 450 0101

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Tribute wall - a place to share your memories and condolences

Shawn N

It was a true pleasure to have met John in 2005 and he was extremely supportive of my musical endeavors over the years. He loved his oldies and jukeboxes; I was very sad to learn of his passing. A friendly and generous soul…although I only met him a couple of times in person, it was always lovely to have an e-mail from him. My condolences to his loved ones.

Donna Taylor

So sorry for you loss Helen. He was a very active man. I watched the funeral and all the tributes were interesting.

Richard and Erin Heppner

I will always remember going to Uncle John and Aunt Helen’s cabin in Killarney, MB to visit when I was a kid. After Grandma Ross died in 1995, we bought a house and property just outside of Ninette, MB and spent summers visiting Uncle John and Aunt Helen at their cabin. Sometimes it was just the 5 of us and sometimes my cousins David, and Lela and their kids would be there to visit with too. I will always remember Uncle John as someone who loved talking to people, loved to laugh and invested in people. He was always interested in what I was doing. He was very proud of my accomplishments , when I became a teacher and got married. I treasure these memories. Aunt Helen, David, Lela and family, we are praying for you guys. We love you. ♥️

Keith and Muriel Leaver

We are very sorry to hear of Johns passing. We enjoyed your visits and hearing of the exciting travels. John was very relaxed and adventurous and enjoyed life to the fullest We will always remember him Our sincere condolences Helen to you and your family. We are thinking of you

Gary Slipp

I am so sorry to learn of John’s passing. He was a wonderful man and, during our days at NAIT, he was a mentor and an set a high standard for all of us. He was the leader of our group and I know he continued to influence so many people in so many positive ways throughout his life. My heartfelt condolences go out to Helen and all of the family.

Susan Volkmann

To Helen and family;
I’m deeply saddened today to read of John’s passing. Such an amazing, interesting person and so very kind. I feel blessed to have been the recipient of his hospitality and to have had some lovely chats with him. My heart goes out to all who loved him and will miss him so dearly.
Susan Volkmann

Neil Hartling

I had the great pleasure to run the Nahanni, Tatshenshini and Colorado Rivers with John. Paddling, hiking and camping for many days, gives you a good measure of a person. From day one, I enjoyed John’s friendship and recognized in him a gem-of-a-human. We stayed in touch for over 30 years and his qualities never faltered. Helen, it was also clear from day one that you were the gem in John’s life. Take care.

Francis Terry

A great friend and a great loss to all of us.John you made this world a better place ,always looked forward to seeing you and Helen on your Island visit.Your leaving has left a big void in my life.Always remember you John.Cheers to you and your family..Love you always my friend Francis and Alice.

Peter & Lorraine Chalanchuk

We were heartbroken upon hearing the news of John’s passing but we are blessed to have many wonderful memories. Our heart are with all of you who have lived him.

Blair and Valerie Scranton

To all of John’s family,
We want to extend our deepest sympathy to you at this sad time. John was such a gentleman and he had a special way of making people feel welcome and appreciated. I will always remember his hearty laugh and keen sense of humor. Our thoughts and prayers are with you. May God bless you all in the days ahead.

Bob Found

I met John before I knew him from Spartan. Back in 1988 I heard on the news about a guy who was going to be displaying his juke boxes at an Edmonton antique show. Since I had a Wurlitzer 1015, like John’s, that I had just started refinishing, this was good fortune. When I met him he was excited, as I was that we both had this love of antique jukeboxes. I asked him where he worked and he said, “Spartan”. I countered with, “I just joined Spartan a couple months ago”. He invited me to his home where I saw his collection. When we went to the garage to see a juke box in pieces, I noticed the back end of a red car under a cover…his 1967 Mustang. “Did you see what I drove up in?” I asked. I had brought my 1987 Mustang. So needless to say we had much in common. Around 2005, I bought a juke box from John. which I partially restored before selling. Because of John’s “Spartan Old Fart” database, we emailed each other a few times every year. Thanks John – for everything.

Dick Frenz

Dear Helen and Family,
My most sincere condolences on John’s passing. I had the privilege of knowing John for quite a few years through the Christmas Bureau, where he was such an amazing, kind and supportive volunteer. He was the consummate most kind Gentlemen and always had a great story to tell, along with his infectious smile that went from ear to ear.
He will be sorely missed and our city has lost “one of it’s best.” May you rest in Peace John and may God Bless you and your Family Helen and may the terrific memories you have with this special man give you comfort and peace at this most difficult time.
Dick Frenz

Bill Durrell

John lived a wonderful life and touched many others in a profound way. He will be greatly missed. I’m very grateful for having known and learned John. May he rest in peace.

Marj and Dennis Foth

We opened the Edmonton Journal on Saturday to see John in the obituaries. What a shock! Marj first met John in an ELLA drama course and Dennis first met him during Edmonton Metropolitan Chorus concerts and remembers him as an ELLA course facilitator. He was a person who we looked forward to seeing any time. Definitely one of the nicest people ever!
Our condolences to Helen and family on this great loss.

Don and Annabel Sheppard

Helen and Family
We were saddened today to read about John’s death. He was such a great guy. We last saw John a number of years ago on ski trips to Panorama and Sun Peaks with the Seniors Ski Club. It was great to see him.
Reading the obituary also brought back memories of the many good times we had with the St. Paul’s group of friends. John will be missed. Helen please take are of yourself.
Don and Annabel Sheppard

Jim & Rita Malott

The last line in the obituary says it so well for us.

It is with much love and gratitude for a life well-lived that we say farewell to a kind and generous man, loved by so many. Rest in peace, John. You will live in our hearts forever.

Our condolences, Helen.

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