Walter Seybold of Summerland passed away peacefully at home at the end of September, 2012. He was born in Stuttgart, Germany, on April 18, 1932, and emigrated to Canada in 1956. From Edmonton he traveled to northern Canada for employment as a licensed welder and boiler maker. He enjoyed the natural beauty of the North, its wildlife and its solitude.
Since industrial boiler-making was an especially hazardous occupation in those years, with workers unprotected from chemical fumes and the X-rays used to check welds, cancer felled many tradesmen. After bouts of illness Walter had to find other employment and was a prison guard in the Lower Mainland. Around 1964 with help from his mother who was highly regarded in Germany for her work with the International Red Cross, Walter returned to Germany for successful surgery.
He returned to work, but about two years later the stomach cancer returned, resulting in severe surgery, chemical treatments and radiation that he later believed to have been excessive. His mother arranged to have him flown to Germany for health treatments afterward.
Walter’s determination to survive triumphed, and he regained strength during the following years of building a homestead in a forest north of 100 Mile House, with a dog and wildlife for companionship. He was also known as a helpful, resourceful neighbour. In 1986 he bought a farm in Cawston. However in 1992 a sawmill was built on adjacent property and its dust forced Walter to sell his farm at a loss and move away for his health. He bought his home in Summerland on Prairie Valley Road around 1994.
Friends of Walter Seybold miss his companionship. He was an inspiration, always researching topics such as homeopathy and herbal knowledge and finding ingenious ways to solve his problems. He enjoyed listening to music and sharing historical lore such as the dramatic history of his forefathers, the persecuted Cathars.