CEEDS organic farm and community


May 8th, 1925 - December 26th, 2004

Member of a pioneering Cariboo family and a life-long social activist
Jerry LeBourdais at The Borland

Jerry was born in Quesnel to Louis and Katherine (K.T.) LeBourdais. He was predeceased by his parents, first wife Eva and infant son Tommy, brothers Eddie and Jim, son Louis and nephew Eugene (Duke) Lebourdais.

He is survived by wife Nancy "Nellie" of Horsefly, B.C. and children Linda (George) Bentley of Williams Lake, Ray (Maureen) LeBourdais of Horsefly, Lorraine LeBourdais (Rob Diether) of 100 Mile House, and daughter-in-law Elaine Pawlik of Horsefly.

Jerry is also survived by nieces and nephews Laurie Lawlor and Wendy LeBourdais of Quesnel, Pat LeBourdais of Victoria, Jim LeBourdais of Invermere and Vye Graff, Mary Hewitt, Norah LeBourdais and Joe LeBourdais all of Kamloops. Jerry had twelve grandchildren and four great grandchildren.

Jerry LeBourdais at KamloopsJerry was raised in Quesnel where his parents operated the telegraph office. His father Louis served two terms as a very popular M.L.A.for the Cariboo. Jerry served in the Navy near the end of World War 2 then homesteaded with his brother Jim at Babine Lake. Later, Jerry worked in the bush near Quesnel where he and his logging partner introduced the I.W.A. into the area.

Jerry moved to North Vancouver becoming active in politics (Liberals, CCF,.NDP, Communist) and the labour movement in the 1950's and 60's. Jerry led a dramatic strike at the Shellborn oil refinery in Burnaby where he worked for eleven years. With Nellie, he and a delegation were invited to Cuba shortly after the revolution there. Jerry also travelled to China as a union delegate.

Eventually fired at Shell, Jerry got into mining exploration. Along with partner Bill McCullagh they formed a couple of different companies and worked around McLeese Lake, Kamloops and the San Juan River on Vancouver Island.

In 1971, Jerry returned to the Cariboo with family and young friends to found an agricultural commune, first at Quesnel Lake and then at Rose Lake, where a beautiful, organic garden was grown. Pigs, cows, horses, and chickens were acquired - Jerry loved domestic animals.

Jerry LeBourdais at the school houseThe commune in 1975 moved to the Borland Meadow. A bond was established with the native street people in Williams Lake. Jerry and the commune helped publicize the plight of the "Troopers." This took the commune to the Sugarcane Reserve, Toosey, Riske Creek and downtown Williams Lake.

During the 80's Jerry became widely known campaigning in provincial elections taking on incumbent Alex Fraser. Jerry's humour and insight would bring down the house at all-candidate's meetings. In one campaign Jerry made provincial news being "busted" for possession of pot.

Around this time Nellie left the commune. She resumed nursing in Vancouver but returned to Beaver Valley where Raymond built a beautiful log house for her. Though separated, Nellie visited often - a great comfort to Jerry, especially during his years dealing with Parkinson's disease.

The commune, by then known as CEEDS, settled in the 100 Mile House area. Jerry took care of The Betty Place. He was a familiar face at the farmers market, promoting the Cariboo potato.

Jerry was guided at all times by uncompromising convictions and principles, which he strove always to put into practice. One of Jerry's great joys was getting to know the Clinton LeBourdais family.

Thank you Jerry for the many adventures you shared with us.

"Chip in and share the wealth"

- Marvin Bob


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