Ken Jaggard, who played a key role in the growth of Penticton Regional Hospital dating back to the 1980s, has passed away at age 92 (Photo: South Okanagan Similkameen Medical Foundation).

Okanagan health care community mourns loss of long-time hospital director

Ken Jarrard dedicated his life in Penticton to health care; he passed away today at age 92.

Penticton Regional Hospital (PRH) always tugged at Ken Jaggard’s heart strings.

For 35 years he was an active figure in the PRH board room – first as a director on the former Penticton hospital board, then as a long-time chair and director with the South Okanagan Similkameen (SOS) Medical Foundation before retiring last year.

His love of the hospital was perhaps best reflected by his comments to one Foundation staff member. Jaggard admitted he would often park across the street during construction of the new PRH tower to watch the development take place, witnessing the new face of health care in Penticton rise before his eyes.

Jaggard passed away at PRH on Jan. 16 at age 92, just a few days after suffering a fall in his Penticton home.

READ MORE: Going to the new Penticton hospital tower? Here are the access points

He was known as a driving force behind the SOS Medical Foundation’s $20-million campaign to provide the medical equipment required for the PRH expansion.

“To me, the public is really interested in good health care,” Jaggard said. “Health care is one of the most challenging and rewarding jobs I’ve ever had. It’s great to see a campaign come together and be successful.”

Carey Bornn, the Medical Foundation’s Executive Director, said Jaggard had reason to be proud of his accomplishments and will be sorely missed by everyone involved in the hospital.

“Ken had an amazing impact at the board level. His breadth of knowledge and the history of the hospital was matched by his strong desire to see its facilities improve,” said Bornn. “For those of us who knew and respected him, he lived a life which was truly worth emulating.”

Jaggard and his wife Alice moved to Penticton in 1981, shortly after his retirement as a top official with the Calgary City Police. He joined the Penticton Hospital board in 1984 and became chairman two years later. Alice, who volunteered with the Penticton Hospital Auxiliary for 25 years, passed away in 2007.

Funeral arrangements have not yet been announced.

READ MORE: ‘Scariest boat ride of my life’: Passengers trapped by ice on rocky B.C. ferry sailing

To report a typo, email: editor@pentictonwesternnews.com.

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