November 8, 1929 - June 16, 2019
Peacefully at his home on Sunday June 16th, 2019 in his 90th year.
Jan was born in Hammerfest, Norway, named after the island of Jan Mayen and spent the years of Nazi occupation in Oslo. Despite danger, he fed Russian prisoners and carried hidden messages. His music studies as a concert pianist and composer at a very young age were interrupted by the war. He was a member of a geological expedition to Svalbard and served in the Norwegian army with the Nato forces in Germany.
After the war, Jan graduated from the University of Oslo in mining, attended Columbia University in New York, USA and graduated in Geology from the University of Toronto. He travelled from the Arctic to Montserrat, and created a global geological library for his mining company.
Jan returned to the University of Toronto to study Medicine and spent his summers mapping the Canadian north, until a plane crash and close encounter with a grizzly bear changed his life again.
Jan then chose to share his knowledge and skills as a Science and Math educator. He often humoured his students with his unique accent, and challenged them to learn to think. For several years he impacted thousands of students as the Chairman and Chief Judge of the Metro Toronto Science Fair.
In retirement, Jan and Lynne returned to College and became EMT’s, riding an ambulance for 15 years.
For over 50 years Jan served his Church, the Royal Canadian Legion, Scouting and Sport through coaching soccer for all ages. Jan was a man of integrity, not only an amazing husband, brother, father, grandfather, and friend, he was a War Veteran, Concert Pianist, Geologist, and Teacher.
Beloved husband of Lynne Kjollesdal (nee Watters). Loving father of Dawne (Greg), David, Heide (Rob) and Heather (Brandi). Dear grandfather of Joshua, Jacob, Samuel, Alexa and Kierstyn. Predeceased by his brother Hallstein (Gunnlaug).
A Funeral Mass will be held at 10:30 am on Friday June 21, 2019 at St. Michael’s Roman Catholic Church. A Celebration of Jan’s life and salute to him follows at the Columbus Community Centre, 232 Spencer Street East in Cobourg. Our gratitude to Dr. Mulé, the palliative care team of Northumberland County and all those who supported Jan and his family.
Memorial donations can be made to the Northumberland Hills Hospital Foundation. Condolences received at www.MacCoubrey.com.
Mass of Christian Burial
Friday June 21, 10:30 am
St. Michael's Catholic Church, Cobourg
Columbus Community Centre
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