On May 20, 2020, the world suddenly lost one of its greatest adventurers, Ryan Darcy Krell, at the young age of 46 years. Throughout his life, he did the things most of us only dream of doing and mastered his passions with exceptional ease and talent.
His adventurous spirit was evident from a young age, with endless beautifully impulsive examples of him living life to the fullest, and always on a whim (often causing his parents hair to fall out)! He had all kinds of adventures. When he was 19 years old, with a sudden desire to see Central America, he gave his family 10 minutes warning, hopped on a Metro Vancouver city bus a block from home, and continued bussing all the way to Belize with some high school friends to live on the beach for a few weeks! He was an avid scuba diver who dived with Great White Sharks in the Bahamas and swam with migrating Whale Sharks off the coast of Mexico, as well as other exotic locations around the world. He was an enthusiastic sailor and raced and had exceptional adventures on the sea. He was a ski instructor and loved spending time in the mountains during the winters. In more recent years, he became an impressive kite boarder. Ryan also had a great love for Volkswagens. He recreated a brilliant “Herbie” car that everyone stopped to admire. Ryan’s “Herbie” made the local paper and he had many adventures with his friends in his VW Bus.
Regardless of what adventure Ryan was on, he always made time for and cared deeply for his family and incredible friends. He cared about people and human rights from a young age. He was a passionate and tenacious advocate for labour rights. At 18 years of age he became the youngest union organizer in Canada at the time, with the Canadian Auto Workers Union, and later the International Woodworkers of America. Ryan took this responsibility seriously and went on to tackle big business. One of his proudest battles was attempting to organize the first unionized McDonald’s in Canada (he got close)! He was frequently in the news, tirelessly advocating for better and fairer benefit packages to meet people’s basic needs. He never backed down from challenging fights to support stronger labour practices for minimum wage workers. He would hang signs on his younger sister and drag her out to rallies and marches for justice, and taught all those around him about equity and social responsibility. Ryan was a whiz with computers and eventually settled in to an IT career for Vancouver Coastal Health Authority, while continuing to live life to the fullest outside of work.
Ryan is survived by his mom Sharon, his father Darcy and step-mom Linda, his sister Shannon and his niece Neeve, as well as dear friends who were also his family: Rob and Ivan and his loving canine companion of 20 years, Osito. Ryan finished his adventures here and is on to his next great escapade. We love you so much Ryan and you will be missed!