Obituary for Roy Lyste
Roy Orlo Lyste was born July 23, 1929 in Admiral, Saskatchewan. He was the seventh of eight children born to Nellie and Otto Lyste. In 1932, when drought came to the prairies the family moved to Swan Lake, La Glace, Valhalla, and eventually settled in Cherry Point, Alberta. Roy was eight years old at the time and went to school there until grade eight. After which time he worked on the farm and eventually homesteaded a portion of land on his own assisted by his father and brother Art.
Roy moved to Dawson Creek with his parents when they retired from the farm. It was in Dawson Creek in 1965 that Roy met Elsie Isaak, a teacher who had come up from the coast to work. Grandma Lyste had a hand in the matchmaking process and the two were married on October 8, 1966. They made their home at 1412 on 116th Avenue where the family resides today. In August of 1967, daughter Donna was born. Roy did not hold to the norms of the day and became a “Mr. Mom” and was the stay at home parent for much of Donna’s childhood. Donna recalls that things were a bit unconventional at times and would often eat potatoe and raw onion sandwiches with her Dad. Roy was always willing to do household chores and took over the grocery shopping and meal preparations. Elsie was able to come home from a long day of teaching grade one and supper was on the table. Roy also baked bread weekly for the family to enjoy. Roy enjoyed many dishes from his Norwegian heritage with coffee and lefsa being his favourites, he was an excellent lefsa turner and taster. He could also ferret out hidden lefsa in the fridge or freezer which we would slather with butter and enjoy.
Besides working in the home and doing seasonal farm work, Roy worked as a custodian at Bethel Christian School and the Dawson Creek Public Library until he reached his retirement.
Family holidays usually involved camping of some sort with Roy’s favourite rig being the 1976 blue Chevy Silverado and camper. Roy made sure all was ready when the camping season began. He and Elsie made numerous trips to Fairmont Hot Springs to soak in the waters there. Roy’s travels were mainly centered in BC, but the family took a trip to Maui one spring break and Roy loved the sun, sand and variety of foliage. He and Elsie also did a rail trip from Edmonton to Toronto, Roy was quite taken with the buffalo burgers served on the train and enjoyed that trip immensely. Another camping experience that Roy enjoyed were the senior’s camps that are held yearly by the church.
Throughout his life Roy had a farmer’s heart and he enjoyed making things grow whether it be on the farm, in the garden, the grass or the house plants. The lawn at the Lyste home had to be up to his high standard and dandelions were not tolerated. In May of this year after Roy had moved up to Rotary Manor, he was at home one afternoon when he proceeded to get on his hands and knees and pick dandelion heads. He would not stop until every last yellow flower was removed.
In winter a similar high standard was shown in his snow shovelling. Roy liked to be the first house on the block with a clear- right- to- the- blacktop shovelling job done. He would then rest and enjoy a coffee.
Roy was a gentle soul and loved cats and dogs, with cats being especially drawn to him. Brother Ken and sister in law Sue had at one time a cat called Fluffy, but known to most as “The Pit Viper”. The cat would hiss and be very unwelcoming to most people. Donna and niece Sandra were astounded when after only one night at Ken and Sue’s The Pit Viper took to Roy as her new best friend and was sitting on Roy’s lap purring instead of its usual hissing with claws bared.
Roy attended Bethel Pentecostal Church for the past fifty plus years; he was a supportive and faithful attender. In the last number of years, he enjoyed his Wednesday nights at Legacy Builders with his fellow seniors.
Roy began attending the Day Program at Rotary Manor a year and a half ago and enjoyed his twice weekly outings and the activities that they were doing there. Roy moved into Rotary Manor at the end of April and his room on the second floor looked out over a growing field. As his health was failing, the staff worked hard to make his days there comfortable and pleasant.
On his birthday Saturday, July 23rd, Elsie and Donna went up to Rotary Manor just after lunch and celebrated his 87th birthday with ice cream, cupcakes, presents and cards from friends and family. Roy enjoyed the party and expressed his thanks a few times; a few hours later he passed on to glory and celebrated the rest of his birthday in heaven.
Roy is survived by his wife Elsie, daughter Donna, sisters Mayme, Nettie, Alma, Ellen and brother Art, and numerous nieces, nephews and friends.