Florence, Val Dean
August 20, 1962 – April 8, 2023
It is with great sadness that we announce the passing of Val Dean Florence on the morning of April 8, 2023, after a long and courageous battle with cancer.
Val was born on August 20, 1962, at Calgary, AB to Gordon & Pat Florence. He was the third oldest of four children: one brother, Cal, and two sisters, Susan & Jo-Ann.
Val left school after Grade 10 in 1978. He worked at various farming jobs in the Winfield and Buck Mountain area and worked for the government at Medicine Lake Provincial Grazing Reserve. Stavely Auction Market, Smed, Westcan, Watt & Stewart, 3J Livestock, and Walker’s Transport were a few of the other places he worked before buying his own rig.
Val loved cattle hauling and it was his life for many years. He was an owner/operator and was so proud of his trucks, polishing them up whenever he had a chance. He saw many miles of country and met and made some amazing friends along the way.
He was an honest man, and a loyal husband, and a loving father. He was a writer and started writing a book about his miles on the highway over the years. He was a poet, and words would always flow easily for him.
Val married Karen Isaacson on July 31, 1993, in Claresholm, AB. Val adopted sons Joshua and Jeffrey after they were married and raised them as his own. They welcomed a daughter, Shelby, in October 1994.
Outside of work, Val was a member of the Glen Keeley Memorial Bull Riding committee, and he took his position very seriously. He loved everything about bulls and bull riding, and with the help of trusty friends he was able to raise a few of his own. Sure Fire Bucking Bulls was established out of this passion and has resulted in Al Capone, one of Alberta’s best bucking bulls. After years of illness and being unable to work at trucking, he became even more involved with this business, traveling Alberta and Saskatchewan with his best ‘hoofed’ friends. Val always had a project on the go or in the planning stages in his mind. He was a crafty woodworker and loved to use his hands to make frames and many other creative projects. He also took up painting with his father-in-law Clancy and created some beautiful scenery pictures. Val started gardening as a hobby over the last few years and was proud of his produce. He brought family and friends together holding his annual “Almosa Ranch” campout and horseshoe tournament every year. He had a wonderful sense of humor even through his darkest days.
Val unfortunately had several challenging health issues starting as early as 1993, and he battled each one of them with courage and determination.
Val leaves behind his wife of 30 years, Karen, his children Mark (Sara), Joshua, Jeffrey, (Deb), Shelby (Ryan), his grandchildren: Matthew, Tavis, Alice, Ryker, Cooper, Oliver. He also leaves behind his father, Gordon “Tex” Florence, two sister, Susan & Jo-Ann (Chris), a brother, Calvin, along with numerous nieces and nephews. He was predeceased by his mother, Phyllis “Pat” Emmons, sisters Katherine Ann & Leslie Ann, and nephew Brandon.
A private memorial service will be held at a later date. In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the Glen Keeley Memorial Benevolent Fund, General Delivery, Stavely AB T0L 1Z0. Messages of condolence may be left for the family at www.zentnerfuneralhomes.ca
Let’r Buck Cowboy!
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