A longtime Langley mechanic and garage owner, Del Barron, died on Oct. 28. He was 88.
Born in Blackfalds, Alberta, the Barron family moved to Murrayville in 1938, and he never left his new home.
Barron married Gertie Hodges in 1953 and in 1957, joined the family business in the Barron and Son garage, which for many years was located on Fraser Highway in downtown Langley City.
“He was well respected in the community,” said Bill Ramsay, a longtime friend of Barron.
Ramsay met the Barrons, including Del’s brother Walt, in the fall of 1966, when the teenaged Ramsay got a job after school and on weekends working at the garage.
“Greasing cars and pumping gas,” was the job, but Ramsay said he became friends with both brothers, and kept in touch with them through to this year.
Del was well known to people through his work.
“Certainly honest, and a work ethic like nobody else had,” Ramsay said of Del.
“Never a bad word out of his mouth, never discouraging, always a happy smile.”
The garage, Barron and Sons, was founded in 1938 by Del and Walt’s father as a Signal Oil station.
Standard Oil, now Chevron, took over Signal and the gas pumps remained Chevron until they were shut off in early 1997. At the time, Walt and Del were the longest-operating Chevron dealers in the entire province.
In addition to pumping gas, the brothers serviced and repaired cars for thousands of Langley residents.
They were so much a fixture of the town that loyal customers came out in August, 1997 to mark the closing of the building.
Del moved on and kept working on cars for a few more years until he followed his brother Walt into retirement.
Walt passed away in 2014.
Del raised three children, Joan, Dan, and Bev. He also had seven grandchildren, three great-grandchildren, and many nieces and nephews.
He kept busy and was always mechanically minded, said Ramsay, who recently did a little work at Del’s cabin in the Interior.
Ramsay said Del was just one of those people who was a good influence on others.
Del Barron’s celebration of life will be on Monday, Dec. 2nd, 1 p.m. at Murrayville Community Hall, 21667 48th Ave. In lieu of flowers, the family is asking for donations to the Heart and Stroke Foundation, the Canadian Cancer Society, or the Langley Memorial Hospital Foundation.