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Patrick Coburn

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Patrick Coburn

August 10, 1926 - September 8, 2022


A Penticton business leader, sportsman and community booster is being fondly remembered.

Pat Coburn died on the same day as Queen Elizabeth II and, coincidentally, both he and the Queen were 96.

Born in Ottawa, Coburn was a professional hockey player. His stops included Oakland in the Pacific Hockey League, the USHL champion Omaha Knights, Edmonton, Boston and then a lengthy stint in the English National Hockey League where he played in several European capital cities. He attended a Detroit Red Wings training camp playing in 10 preseason exhibition games.

The defenceman arrived in Penticton in 1958 as player/coach of the Penticton Vees, then a senior A team.

“Pat was a great teammate and I enjoyed his company,” said former goalie Ivan McLelland, who played one season with Coburn before retiring. “He always called me the young guy. He was an absolute gentleman and an excellent athlete. His wife Dolores was well liked by the players’ wives and girlfriends.”

Following hockey, Coburn worked briefly for Allstate Insurance which had an office in the Simpson Sears building in downtown Penticton. He bought Bowsfields across the street, which later became Coburn and Company Real Estate and Insurance. The office was located at 364 Main Street. He would remain self-employed for six decades.

Coburn was a founding member of Toastmasters and a longtime Rotarian and Gyro Club member. He was also a devoted Roman Catholic for many years.

“This is a big loss Penticton,” said Mayor John Vassilaki, who knew Coburn and his family for 60 years. “He was a wonderful man, a very gentle person. He and his wife donated so much of their time to help those who needed it the most. They were very generous both financially and spiritually.”

Coburn was recognized on the front page of the Ottawa Citizen during the pandemic when he was presented with a bravery award, 76 years after the fact. On July 1, 1945 the then-lifeguard saved a 17-year-old boy from drowning on the Rideau River in Ottawa. His medal from the Royal Canadian Humane Society was never presented due to the Second World War and was lost in an administrative shuffle. It was sent to Penticton in 2021 and presented by Vassilaki on the steps of City Hall.

Coburn, who loved canoeing and outdoor recreation, is predeceased by his wife Dolores of 76 years. The couple had four children and one grandchild.

Funeral arrangements have not been finalized.


Send a condolence, light a candle and/or share a memory, click "Send Condolence". Once your message has been approved by the moderator it will be posted to the website.

From: Kettle Valley Memorial Services

The Kettle Valley Memorial staff send our condolences to family and friends.

From: Gloria Williams
Relation: Long time Penticton resident, knew Dolores and children

I am so sorry to hear, thinking of you all. Gloria Williams (Nevens / Finch)

From: Frank & Carol McKeever
Relation: Friendship of 30 years.

We sincerely regret not hearing of Pat’s passing sooner. Our condolences to his family. He was a terrific friend to us whenever he was in Arizona, and we have missed him dearly over the past few years. Pat and Delores’ souls are together again. God Bless them.

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