It is with great sadness and broken hearts that we announce the passing of Don Goosen at Abbotsford General Hospital, British Columbia after a short and courageous battle with AL Amyloidosis.
Diagnosed December 2021, Don fought this cruel and rare disease with courage, strength and optimism before God took him home at the age of 57.
Don will be lovingly remembered by his mother Hedie; his partner Susan; his children, Alexis, Ty and Amanda, Matt and Maddie; Susan’s children Connor and Christine, Samantha and Devinder; granddaughters Amira and Presley; siblings Jack and Peggy, Debbie and Mike, Heidi; many nieces and nephews; Don is predeceased by his father Jacob Goosen, who passed eleven months previous on March 17, 2021.
Don was born in Winnipeg Manitoba and grew up in a family of four children. At a young age, his propensity for drums was evident when as a baby, his mom made a makeshift drum set with kitchen items in the late hours to keep him amused. This talent evolved into a ‘gig’ as drummer for a band Crystal Bridge in his youth. They would practice in the basement where Don’s grandmother would listen and adore their version of The Rose as it reminded her of a church hymn. Don’s loving and affectionate heart showed early when in kindergarten Don told his teacher he forgot what his mother looked like so that he could be walked to his home across the street to give her a hug. He grew up spending family vacations in Ontario, B.C., Disney World and Las Vegas where his sister Debbie remembers as ‘the babysitter’, her easy going and very caring brother Don spending his time fine tuning his skills at arcade games and pinball. Don professed God blessed him with a full head of hair and at the age of 16 it is believed after attending a pool party that his wavy locks transformed to a mass of curls.
Don attended Red River College in Winnipeg before investing in a lengthy career in Loss Prevention Investigation. He worked for companies including The Hudson’s Bay Company, Manitoba Lotteries Corporation at Club Regent Casino, Indigo Books, Cabela’s and finally The Northwest Company in a position that brought him opportunities to travel to remote communities including Arctic Bay, Iqaluit and Guam.
Don lived in the Winnipeg area most of his life where he raised his children with his children’s mother Joanne. They owned a hobby farm close to Niverville where they raised chickens, goats, sheep, bunnies, alpacas and even a donkey. It was also a wonderful place to practice one of Don’s many loves; football. A lifelong Miami Dolphin fan, the farm was a perfect place to throw the football with his boys and invent the infamous play “Hooks to Septic”. In addition to “The Fish”, Don’s love of Seinfeld was infectious and his appreciation of fine watches was his timeless passion.
Don moved to Chilliwack, BC at the beginning of 2020 to be with the love of his life Susan. Divine Intervention led them together when they met the previous year. A true gentleman and romantic, he asked her father for her hand in marriage and proposed in front of her parents on bended knee shortly after. Susan’s family treasured and embraced Don with open arms including her two Labrador pups, Winston and Bailey. Visions of retirement in paradise were beginning to be realized when they traveled to Mexico and put a deposit on their dream condo in December shortly before Don’s health took a turn. They shared a love beyond the world and Don gave her a forever with their numbered days.
Don’s infectious and welcoming personality attracted a large number of friends along his journey including his childhood friend group “Full Book” who inspired Don’s contagious and over use of the word “Full”. Many who met Don immediately considered him like a brother. His wonderful sense of humour, overflowing generosity and loving kindness will long be remembered by his family and friends.
The family would like thank the staff of Chilliwack General Hospital’s 4th and 2nd floors and ICU as well as Abbotsford General Hospital’s ICU and CCU for their care and professional attention. As per Don’s wishes, a cremation has taken place. A private service and Celebration of Life is being held this summer near Don’s home in Chilliwack, British Columbia. Donations in Don’s memory can be made to the Canadian Organization for Rare Disorders.