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John Markvoort

May 29, 2022

John Markvoort, loving husband, father, grandfather, brother, brother-in-law, uncle and friend, passed away at his home in the early morning hours of Sunday, May 29th, 2022, surrounded by family after a courageous and hard-fought battle against cancer.

John loved, in no particular order, building or fixing something, golf, skiing, driving his truck over the speed limit, all things wood, lending a helping hand, a Bacardi rum and coke in a tall glass, the Maple Leafs, the Blue Jays, Blue Rodeo, a good straight cut on a decent two by four, World Cup soccer, reading the news on his iPad with kitty Ah-choo on his lap, golf trips to Boyne Highlands, or anywhere, and above all else, family.  His wife, Arlene Moffatt, daughter Haley Markvoort, of whom he was so proud, granddaughter Mikhaela Moore and partner Ouzin von Wahl, and grandson Tyler Allison will so miss his loving and caring spirit.   John is also survived by his loving siblings Bill and partner Ingeborg, sisters Geri and Annette and brother-in-law Patrick Moloney.  John will also be very much missed by sister-in-law Deanie Markvoort and partner Jim, brother and sister-in-law Allan and Karen Moffatt, aunt and uncles Eleanor and Hans and Elizabeth and Wim Markvoort and many wonderful nieces, nephews and other family members, both in Canada and the Netherlands.

Besides his parents, John was predeceased by his wife Patricia Shwaluk, brother Dick (Dirk), sister-in-law Janet Brine, niece Eva Markvoort and Haley’s mom, Karen Birchall.

John was born July 3, 1953 in Rijssen, Netherlands to parents Dina (Dien) and Dirk Markvoort. He immigrated with his family to Canada in 1957, attending school in London, and graduating from Montcalm Secondary.   Sitting on the sidelines of the Montcalm football team much more than playing on the field would garner him the life-long nickname of Johnny Bench.  Apprenticing in his father’s workshop building and installing kitchen cabinets would kick-start his career in the building trades.  He obtained his Red Seal in Carpentry from George Brown Community College and was employed as a construction superintendent in the London area for a number of years.  He switched careers mid-life, successfully attending Althouse College and worked for the Thames Valley District School Board as a construction technology teacher.   John was well-regarded as an educator, Technical Education Director and colleague at both Sir George Ross and B. Davison Secondary Schools.

More recently, John had retired and built a new home on the shores of Lake Huron, close to his family cottage, where he and friends and family have happily gathered for over 40 years.

Much love and laughter have been enjoyed on well-constructed decks that John has built during his lifetime, along with many engaging conversations, cocktails, al fresco dinners and wacky theme parties.

John continued the finishing work on the new lake property with grit and determination, even after major surgery and while undergoing treatment.  His family and friends are heart-broken that he never got more time to relax and enjoy his sweaty and always-skilled handiwork.

The family extends grateful thanks to the medical communities which assisted John in his cancer journey:  Dr. Ward Davies and the 8th floor surgical team at University Hospital; Dr. Stephen Welch, nurse Bonnie and the chemo and radiology units at the London Regional Cancer Program at Victoria Hospital; family doctor Carmen Shmitz; Southwest LHIN nursing; and the home care team at Saint Elizabeth including nurses Dan, Kayla, Jess and Shelley.

Family and friends are invited to gather and reminisce next Tuesday, June 7th, 2022 at Northview Funeral Chapel, 1490 Highbury Avenue North, London, from 3:00 to 7:00 p.m.  A private celebration of John’s life will be held at the lake in the coming weeks.

In lieu of flowers, please consider a donation to the London Regional Cancer Program in John’s memory.

“Measure twice—cut once….gotta be sure it’s right”…….so says Johnny Bench.

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A donation has been made to London Regional Cancer Centre. Message from the donator: Arlene and family, we have such wonderful memories of John, at both work and play. We feel for you and know you are surrounded with such loving family as well as 20 plus years of memories. You were truly a gift to one another. Anna and Chris

~ Anna and Chris Squire

We want to send our deepest condolences to our dear friend Arlene, (aka. Duffy ), and to the Markvoort family. John was a wonderful friend who had a loving and kind spirit . We were blessed to have spent many wonderful and fun times together with Him and Duffy. He was truly loved by the two of us and by many others . He will be missed, but His spirit will live on, in our hearts and in our memories. Much love and comfort to Duffy and to the Markvoort family. Ted and Barbara

~ Ted and Barbara Tedesco

We want to give our deepest condolences to our dear friend Arlene ( aka. Duffy ) and to the Markvoort family > John was a wonderful friend who had a loving and kind spirit. We spent many wonderful and fun times with Him and Duffy. John was truly loved by the two of us and by many others. He will be missed, but his spirit will live on in our hearts and in our memories. Much love and comfort to Duffy and the Markvoort Family > Ted and Barbara Tedesco

~ Ted and Barbara Tedesco

I was so sad to read about John's passing. I worked with John for 5 years at Sir George Ross S.S. He was a great teacher and staff member. He had a good sense of humour and I always felt supported by him. I am thinking of Arlene and his family, knowing what a loss they must feel. My deepest condolences.

~ Cindy McDowell

Dear Arlene I am so sorry for your loss. John was truly an amazing, talented man. I always enjoyed my visits to your home and looked forward to seeing what else John had created. You are in my thoughts.

~ Laura Woods

John was one of the nicest people I have had the honour of working with. Always quick with a smile and a laugh, easygoing, helpful and kind. There was never a problem he wouldn't help with, always willing to go above and beyond and never made it feel like it was a hardship. I am so sorry for your loss. I wish you all peace at this time. John will forever be in our hearts and you in our thoughts & prayers.

~ Chrys Skikos

I knew John many years ago. He was a very special, funny, caring person then. It seems he became even more so, in the passing years. My heart goes out to John's wife, daughter & all the family.

~ Helen Smith

A donation has been made to London Regional Cancer Clinic. Message from the donator: Our thoughts are with Arlene and the wonderful Markvoort family. John was a rock. He was always there to lend a hand and share whatever he had to help a friend. His indomitable spirit will always be with us. ❤️

~ Frank & Nancy Moore

A donation has been made to London Regional Cancer Program. Message from the donator: Dear Arlene and family, Our sincere condolences to all. Our thoughts and prayers are with you. Love Ruth & Nigel

~ Ruth Howard

Our sincerest sympathy to you Arlene and your families. In the few short years that I knew John I feel we became good friends, John was a great person.

~ Charlie and Eileen Baker

A donation has been made to LONDON REGIONAL CANCER. Message from the donator: We are deeply sorry for your loss. We met many years ago. What we remember most of all was his extreme devotion and love of his family. He will be missed by many. We will keep John and his family in our prayers.

~ Peter & Patti Welsh

A donation has been made to Canadian Cancer Society. Message from the donator: Geri and family, our deepest condolences for your loss. Our thoughts are with you in this difficult time. Take good care, Sandra, David, Brooke and Brett

~ Sandra Oliver

A donation has been made to London Regional Cancer Program. Message from the donator: Sending our deepest condolences for your loss.

~ Sue And John Delaney

My deepest condolences to you Arlene and to your family. John will be missed at Bluehaven beach. Anne O’Donnell

~ Anne O’Donnell

A donation has been made to LHSC. Message from the donator: Arlene, our deepest condolences on Johns passing

~ Bill & Karen Moffatt

A donation has been made to Cancer Society.

~ Sharon Ullyot

Although I did not know John, I have had the pleasure of working with his sister Geri for the past few years. I know Geri was very close to her brother, and to her family. Even though I never met him, through the tribute written by his wife, I can understand what an extraordinary man he was, loved by so many. I am sorry for your loss. I hope your cherished memories provide some solace in the times ahead.

~ Patti Croft

Mr. Markvoort was one of the first teachers I ever had as a student at B. Davison Secondary School and he was one of the kindest teachers and people that I knew. He always pushed me to be a better student and always pushed me to make any wood piece I did in his wood shop class the best it could be. He was so kind and caring and he will be deeply missed. My deepest condolences go out to his family

~ Ocean Pengelly

Sending sincere sympathies Arlene and families. John had a large circle of family, friends and colleagues, hoping you all are able find comfort in your memories.

~ Teresa Loucks

I am so saddened to hear about John's passing. Thinking of you, Arlene and your family during this difficult time.

~ Deirdre Villani

A donation has been made to London Regional Cancer Program. Message from the donator: My deepest condolences. Darlene

~ Darlene O'Neill

My deepest condolences to all of the family. May he be at sweet peace now. Much love Darlene

~ Darlene O'Neill

Arlene, so sorry to hear about John. Always enjoyed talking with him at school. Thinking of you and your family. Take care.

~ Brenda Mercer

A donation has been made to London Regional Cancer Program.

~ Philip Gore

Services for John Markvoort

Memorial Visitation will be held at:
Northview Funeral Chapel
1490 Highbury Avenue North,
London, Ontario

June 7, 2022 3:00 pm to 7:00 pm

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London Regional Cancer Program

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