October 16, 1936 – January 9, 2021
With deep sadness we announce the sudden passing of Jack Reams on January 9th at the age of 84.
Jack is lovingly remembered by his wife of 29 years, Marlene; children Jonathan (Juliane), Kristine (Mark), Matthew (Miki); step-children Lee (Yuki), Tessa (Scott); grandchildren Kevin, Ian, Dylan, Leland, Emily and Noah; brother Jim (Lynn) and children, as well as a large extended family.
Jack was born October 16 1936 in Moscow ID to Fay & Gudrun Reams. He grew up on their 800-acre mixed farm and embraced farming at an early age. His youth was devoted to church and sports and a genuine love for farming, particularly pigs.
From 1955 -1957 he served as US Navy Petty Officer, 2nd Class US Navy sailing between Alameda, CA to Yokosuka, Japan. From 1957-1965 he was owner-operator of a farm raising dairy cows and weaner pigs. In 1963 he received a BSc from Univ of ID in 1963, majoring in animal husbandry with a minor in history.
He also worked as a fieldman for an agricultural lending cooperative in Lewiston, ID. In 1965 he emigrated to Canada, “the land of opportunity”, with his young family and worked for Shur-Gain Div. of Canada Packers first as feed salesman and then as Provincial Swine Specialist in AB. In 1967 he formed a partnership, R & H Farms, and purchased a pig farm in Aldergrove, BC and the next 20 years were taken up with intense purebred and commercial swine production in BC and AB.
The farm was sold in 1986 and the partnership dissolved. He then worked as fieldman and later as sales manager for National Pig Development in BC and SK. From 1988 to 1998 he was Credit Manager for East Chilliwack Co-op, where he met Marlene and married in 1991.
In 1998 he began his private consulting practice assisting producers in developing business plans, both short term and long term for all commodities in agriculture. He developed Agricultural Area plans for the municipalities of Pitt Meadows and Richmond and since 200 he has held contracts with AACF in the areas of Farm Debt Mediation, assisting farmers and ranchers through difficult financial situations.
Since 2000 he worked with the BC Farm Business Assessment program developing agricultural business plan assessments for farmers, ranchers, beginning farmers and First Nations groups, and wildfire assessments for affected ranchers and farmers. In 2000 he received accreditation from IOIA as independent organic inspector in the areas of crops, livestock and apiaries, and processing facilities.
For over 19 years he carried out crops, livestock and processing plant organic inspections for Canadian and international certifying bodies in western Canada and the northwest USA. In 2004 he completed the EFP course and consulted in EFPs, Nutrient Management Plans and Riparian Area Management Plans in BC and Yukon.
In 2004 he began consulting as a third-party auditor for CFIA approved specialty meat labeling and worked with several producers in the pork, poultry and beef sectors assisting them in writing their standards and conducting audits verifying labelling. Within these sectors his audits included primary producers, transportation, feed mills, premix plants, primary producers and slaughter and processing facilities.
Jack had a strong work ethic and most importantly he was able to meet people and renew annual acquaintances, always gaining and sharing knowledge in the areas of finance, organics, animal welfare, and specialty meat labeling. He thrived on working and he relied heavily on Marlene in the office. Retirement was to begin in 2 years; his last working day was January 8, 2021.
Jack’s hard work also allowed time to travel, usually a busman’s holiday but also with friends. His interest in history and people and his dedication to agriculture took them to Europe, Asia, Australia, NZ, Iceland, USA, and of course Canada from coast to coast.
Travelling was usually to the out-of-the way places to connect with the country and the locals. His interest in history led him to Scotland, particularly the Shetland Islands and the Hebrides and a third trip was being planned for 2022.
His competitive nature was evident when playing canasta; he had a deep interest in history, particularly archeology and cultural anthropology; but first and foremost, he was an avid Seahawks fan.
Jack’s service to agriculture was extensive, beginning with 4H and FFA in Moscow. He was a Member P.Ag, BC Institute of Agrologists, Member Agriculture Institute of Canada, Member Canadian Association of Management Consultants and had served as BCIA Fraser Valley Branch President, BCIA President, and AIC President.
He served as director and treasurer for Independent Organics Inspectors Association, as well as on various agricultural boards and committees at both provincial and federal levels including President of BC Pork Producers Assn.
Jack became a Christian at a young age and it embraced him. After moving to Chilliwack in 1991, he began attending SFBC and he was baptised. He led a home bible study for over 10 years, served on the BC Fellowship Society Board, SFBC Finance Chairman for over 20 years and recently began leading bible study via technology.
He loved his church family and was always positive and welcoming to whomever he met. Jack had a passion for the underprivileged and sincerely cared for the Voice of Hope Widow Care program which provides education and the opportunity to become more self-sufficient. In honour of Jack, you have the opportunity to support this widow care project through: Hungry for Life International Project Kenya Voice of Hope 2021.
Jack is remembered for his genuine interest in people, whether at home, work, church or travelling, both personally and professionally. He so loved his family and he is dearly missed.
At this time the family would like to thank everyone for their support through messages of condolence, cards and flowers.
Memorial service will be livestreamed at www.sardisfellowship.com on 27 January @ 2 pm.