Joe Snopek, Creston Town Councillor, dead at 75

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  • Sep. 23, 2016 9:00 a.m.
Long-time Creston Town Councillor and former mayor Joe Snopke.

Long-time Creston Town Councillor and former mayor Joe Snopke.

Creston Town Councillor Joe Snopek died early Thursday morning in Kelowna General Hospital after suffering a massive heart attack.

Snopek, 75, attended Town Council meetings, where he conducted a public hearing, on Tuesday and was preparing to attend the Union of BC Municipalities conference in Victoria next week. He went to the emergency room at Creston Valley Hospital on Thursday morning and was transported to Kelowna via air ambulance in the afternoon.

Creston Town Councillor Joe Snopek died early Thursday morning in Kelowna General Hospital after suffering a massive heart attack.

Snopek, 75, attended Town Council meetings, where he conducted a public hearing, on Tuesday and was preparing to attend the Union of BC Municipalities conference in Victoria next week. He went to the emergency room at Creston Valley Hospital on Thursday morning and was transported to Kelowna via air ambulance in the afternoon.

Snopek will be remembered for his 14 years of service on Creston Town Council, 6 as mayor, and for many years of running his own auction business. He is a lifetime member of the Association of Kootenay and Boundary Local Governments and, in 2008 he was the 1st Vice-President of the Union of BC Municipalities.

“I am in Victoria to attend our annual UBCM Conference and Joe was to be part of our group meetings with the Premier and other cabinet ministers,” Mayor Ron Toyota said on Friday morning. “We all attended our Council meeting this Tuesday, never imagining that we would be going through this sad situation today. This is a sad loss for our community.”

Among Snopek’s many community involvements, he was president of the Handy Capable Housing Society, President of the Creston Restorative Justice Committee, President of the Creston Valley Fall Fair Association, and President of the Creston-Kaminoho (Japan) Friendship Society. He was also a director of Creston Community Forest Corporation.

As mayor, Snopek helped spearhead, along with RDCK directors John Kettle, Tom Mann and Verna Mayers-McKenzie, a physician recruitment program, a successful approach that has been emulated in many other communities.

He had a great love of woodworking, and was a woodcarver of note—his carvings won many ribbons at the Fall Fair over the years.

Snopek’s wife of 53 years, Karen, died in January, 2015.