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Bruce MacNeill

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Bruce Joseph MacNeill

September 18, 1947 - May 8, 2024

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Bruce Joseph MacNeill, 76, passed on May 8, 2024, in Cranbrook, BC in the presence and hearts of family.  We say goodbye to an exemplary man; thoughtful, reasoned, honest, generous and kind; easy to laugh and stoic in the face of adversity.

Bruce was born September 18, 1947, second child to Alice Josephine (nee Boudrot) and George Edmund (Ned) MacNeill. Bruce and sister Bonnie (Scott) ventured their childhood neighbourhoods together on the
west coast and Salmo BC. Bruce also enjoyed younger brothers Grant and Christopher, Ned’s children with
wife Joyce (nee Crabtree).

While attending Salmo Secondary School, Bruce met Josephine (Josie) Mary Besanger. They married in
October 1966, and a couple years later welcomed their first child, Rachelle, followed by Melissa and Michael.

Bruce and Josie began their life together in Salmo, moving to Fraser Lake a few years later, where Bruce continued work as an underground mine surveyor. They eventually settled in Cranbrook, BC where they raised their three children, while building an innovative timber harvesting business. With partner, Mike Besanger, they successfully operated MBM Contracting from the mid-1970s through to 2005. The operation grew to over forty employees, many of whom became lifelong friends. Bruce also participated in land use commissions on sustainable resource usage in the mid-1990s. A respected member of the logging community, Bruce was named Interior Logging Association Chairman in 1999.

Their entrepreneurial spirit was not limited to forestry, Bruce and Josie also owned a residential rental property for several years. Leveraging the sale of that business, Bruce, a man of many talents, built a new family home on Gold Creek road. A decade later, he constructed a holiday home near Sandpoint, with the help of Josie and son Michael. Extended family and friends spent many happy days vacationing there, with the property remaining in the family.

After losing Josie to cancer in 2004, Bruce later met Marilyn Diane Dakin. Bruce and Marilyn enjoyed welcoming and watching grandchildren grow, traveling, and socializing with friends and family. After many happy years together, Bruce lost Marilyn to cancer in 2017.

It is in this time period that he became co-owner of Mission Hills Golf Course with his son Michael. They operated the course together until the sale in early 2024. The grandchildren had lots of fun golfing with him and ripping around on the carts.

Patricia Violet Campbell entered his life six years ago and they began a fun-loving romance that continued until Patricia tragically passed in February of this year. They shared good times with friends, dancing, day trips and eating out, as well as relaxing trips to Hawaii.

Bruce had many interests, learning to pilot a Cessna in his early twenties, astronomy, downhill skiing, fishing, boating, water skiing, golf, and watching his grandchildren in sports and arts, to name a few. But what he will be most remembered for was his humility, good humour, wisdom, and love and dedication to family. He will be especially missed by his children Rachelle (Roy Stadlwieser), Melissa (Dave) Nicol and Michael (Jennifer) and grandchildren Kurt, Kieran, Jasmin, Alexander and Benjamin, as well as his extended families in the MacNeill, Besanger, Dakin and Campbell clans.

In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the Canadian Cancer Society

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