Lew Warke
Lew Warke
Lew Warke
Lew Warke

Obituary of Lew Warke

JOSEPH LEWIS WARKE Jr. 

“...And until we meet again,
 May God hold you in the hollow of His hand.”

Joseph Lewis Warke Jr. (Lew) died peacefully on the evening of September 15, 2022, in the loving arms of his family. Lew will be greatly missed by all who had the privilege of knowing him. His memory will be cherished by his wife Valerie Warke, daughter Kathleen Warke, son-in-law Timothy Shantz, and beloved grandchildren, Chloe and Isaac; his sisters, Alberta Olson and Brenda Warke; his brothers, Ronald (Betty) Warke and Trevor (Sheila) Warke; and a wonderful multi-generational extended family of nieces, nephews, cousins, and beloved in-laws. Lew was predeceased by his brother Gibson.  

Lew travelled through life with a smile, a song, and a warm generosity that drew many to love and admire him. Born to Rev. Joseph Lewis and Mayretta Warke in Comber, Northern Ireland, Lew emigrated to Canada with his family, eventually settling in Edmonton. Lew turned his natural sense of style into a career in fashion. As a manager at the Hudson’s Bay, Lew interviewed a potential employee, and after work informed his mom that he had just met the girl he’d marry; a love affair with Valerie that grew for 54 years. 

As a teenager, Lew used his first savings to purchase a life insurance policy to provide for his parents, so it was no surprise that his career shifted from fashion to finance. Over five decades, Lew built The Warke Agency Inc. through dedicated service and excellence in financial planning. Lew’s deep commitment to helping others was appreciated by hundreds of clients, many of whom became lifelong friends. Lew’s professional integrity earned him widespread respect among his colleagues, as well as several prestigious industry awards. Retirement was never Lew’s aspiration, because going to work was always so much fun.

Lew’s Christian faith was quietly profound - the cornerstone of his life. He counted years not by birthdays, but by Christmas Eves. He believed in sharing the many blessings he’d received. He volunteered his rich tenor voice, and a flair for auctioneering, to fundraise millions for charities over the years. Lew’s happiest moments were those shared with family and friends, and everyone was welcome at the many celebrations hosted by Lew and Val in their warm and loving home. 

Lew faced terminal cancer with quiet courage and grace; his inner strength and determination carrying him far beyond the original prognosis. His family sincerely thank the many health professionals who cared for Lew with great compassion and skill over the past three years. 

A Memorial Service will take place at First Baptist Church, Edmonton on Sunday, November 13 at 3:00 pm. All are welcome, either in person or via livestream. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made in Lew’s memory to Pilgrims Hospice Society, Edmonton Community Foundation, or Hope Mission.

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