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Joseph Rieberger Joseph Rieberger Joseph Rieberger Joseph Rieberger Joseph Rieberger Joseph Rieberger

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Joseph ("Joe") Rieberger

January 3, 1941 - February 17, 2022


He has climbed his last tower.  For over 10 years Joe lived with dementia and on February 17, 2022 the struggle ended.  Joe was born on January 3, 1941, the thirteenth child of John & Hedwig Rieberger on the farm near Lintlaw, Saskatchewan.  In 1947, Joe, his parents and siblings that were still at home, moved to Creston where he started school.  He remembers being shocked that apples grew on trees instead of arriving in a box.  In 1969 he made a trip back to the old homestead and actually met the midwife who had given him his first spanking.

After graduation he joined the Signal Corp branch of the Army, three of his brothers were already serving in the forces for Canada.  For 1961 and 1962, he served in Egypt as part of the Peacekeeping Corp where he helped maintain the communications equipment.  After 9 years engagement in the Army he retired and attended NAIT in Edmonton.

In 1969 Joe married Kathleen Sullivan and upon joining the External Affairs division of the Federal Government they moved to Ottawa.  After six months,  Joe transferred to the Transport Canada division of the government and requested a posting to Cranbrook, B.C. which he got.  For a change of scenery, in 1979, they went to Spring Island, off the West coast of Vancouver Island across from Campbell River so he could dismantle the LORAN station.  It was a Ship Navigation Aide station that had been replaced by a satellite station in Williams Lake.  In 1982 – 84, they moved to Inuvik, NWT where Joe did relief station manager technician, then back to Cranbrook before going to Sandspit, Haida Gwaii (Queen Charlotte Islands) as a relief station manager technician.  They then returned to Cranbrook and he built their bermed-house (3 sides in a hill).

Joe got his Amateur Radio license in 1975,  “Ve7CRJ”.  At that that time the club had over 100 members.  Joe became the maintenance person for all the ham equipment and so made many a trip up mountains  to the repeater sites for installing and repairing of the equipment.  Besides doing maintenance he was head of the Provincial Emergency Radio Communications Service (PERCS) for a number of years.  Joe retired in 1995 but continued to work with two communications companies on communication radios, doing installations in RCMP cars, setting up equipment for internet, satellite TV (thus climbing towers).  Joe could and did everything as he was a brilliant man.

He was predeceased by his parents, all brothers and sisters save one – Mike Rieberger of Trail, B.C.  Joe is survived by his loving wife, Kathy, & three sisters-in-law, numerous nieces and nephews.

A celebration of his life will be held on July 02, 2022 in Cranbrook.  Notification of the location will be sent out at a later date.

The family would like to thank Dr. Van Zyl, the staff at the Kimberley Special Care Home, and Joseph Creek for the care given to Joe. If desired, donations in Joe’s name can be made to the Alzheimer’s Foundation or library of choice as Joe was an avid reader.



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From: Mark Memorial Funeral Services

Mark Memorial Funeral Services Staff send our condolences to family and friends.

From: Harold Brown
Relation: Cranbrook airport

Kathy I’m so sorry to hear of Joe’s passing. Joe was one of the nicest people I’ve ever known.

From: Robert Poliues
Relation: Joe was married to Kathy and her brother is our brother-in-law

Kathy what a wonderful obituary. I could almost see Joe telling us his life story. Such an amazing tribute. Sending you all of our love and prayers Kathy. Hugs Bob and Lynda

From: Brian Hind
Relation: ham radio friend

Dear Kathy & family: I understand that no matter how prepared one is for a loved one’s passing, the shock factor is still present when the loved one passes. Given the circumstances, great relief will come to you all, & Joe is no longer alone. Peace & tranquility to you all Brian Hind VE6XX

From: Barbara Stelmack
Relation: Family friend

Dear Kathy – deepest condolences to you at this sad time

From: Sara Carlye
Relation: Was one of his aides in long term care

Kathy, my condolences to you. It was my pleasure to work with Joe and Joseph Creek Care Village, while he resided in the Lakit unit there. I am sad to hear of his passing. I will never forget those beautiful blue eyes. Joe, your mind is no longer imprisoned, rest peacefully my friend!

From: Laurie Harris
Relation: Through Better at Home.

So sorry to hear that Joe has left us. Kathy, thanks for sharing him with us for a short time. Laurie & Bob

From: Donna & Ken Huisman
Relation: neighbor

Our deepest condolences to you Kathy and to Joe’s family and friends. We were neighbors for a short time and enjoyed the short visits we had. RIP Joe

Service Schedule

Private service arrangements have been made.

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