Stephen John Sawyer

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Stephen John Sawyer

May 16, 1959 - June 23, 2020

Peacefully at home, on Tuesday, June 23, 2020, in his 62nd year. Beloved husband of Jane (nee Mann). Cherished father of Danielle. Dear brother of Bill (Carole), Mike (Mary), and Paul (Jodi). Brother -in-law of Shelley (Bert) Vanderwel, Harold (Karen) Mann, Bart (Kirsty) Mann, and Carol (Steve) Weir. He will be sadly missed by many nieces and nephews.

Steve Sawyer was not a man that could be described by simple adjectives, but rather by concepts. He was driven by hard work and determination. He was a visionary, an entrepreneur, an architect, a builder, an artist, a teacher, and most importantly a true friend. Steve was born in Oshawa Ontario. At the age of 15, he moved to Grafton when his dad purchased Shelter Valley Park campground which consisted of 13 campsites, a picnic pavilion, and a rickety old slide. It was from this day that the course of Steve's life would forever be changed. Steve worked hand in hand with his dad, Bill, cutting trees, clearing sites, and running hydro and water to help expand the campground. This went on for many years as Steve worked to build a mini putt course, swimming pond, shuffleboard and volleyball courts. Today the campground has 166 sites and is predominantly full of seasonal trailers with some campers calling the park their summer home for as many as 40 years.

After graduating from high school, Steve went to the University of Waterloo where he studied Kinesiology. He could continually be heard saying that the most important thing his degree taught him was that he could learn anything he wanted to by reading a book. With this mindset, he returned home from school and decided that he was going to build a golf course. His dad Bill, however, was not fully on board with this, so Steve and Bill negotiated a deal where Steve bought the campground in 1996. After buying the campground Steve then decided that, despite not having any money, or knowing anything about building a golf course he was going to build one.

Steve had three very special defining qualities; passion, the belief that no task was ever too hard to learn, and that God had his back. These qualities alone may not amount to much, but when put together they can create something so magical; something that may not even seem possible in a dream. This is exactly what he did. He had a passion and love for golf that was indescribable. This was coupled with a belief in himself that was so strong that despite all of the odds against him and the mountain of work in front of him, he knew God would make it possible. A family member can be recalled saying “I had no idea what I was looking at. There was a forest of trees and three feet of poison ivy everywhere. Steve was describing where a particular golf hole was going to be, where the tee-off would go, and where the green was going to be, and all I could think was that he was crazy. I could not understand how in a forest of trees, he was able to see a golf hole”. This was the most miraculous thing about Steve, he was a visionary. He was able to see things that other people could not. He saw hundreds of trees and valleys and thought if I cut those trees down and move forty feet of dirt with a bulldozer, then I will have a signature golf hole.

With this mindset, he walked into the forest with a chainsaw one winter and just started the job. There were thousands of hours spent cutting down trees, clearing out the brush, using the bulldozer to move tons of dirt and stone from one location to another, picking out rocks, raking, putting in an irrigation system, and then finally planting the grass. During this twenty-year journey, there were many tasks and obstacles, but Steve did not let any of them stop him, and he never stopped learning. He was a perfectionist and wanted his work to be impeccable. For this reason, he always wanted the jobs to be done himself. Therefore he learned everything there was to learn about both building and maintaining a golf course. The employees of the golf course do not always have the most enjoyable jobs, especially during the building process. Raking for eight hours straight in one location can be beyond tedious, but the employees could never complain because every job they did Steve did too. He would never assign a job that he wouldn’t do himself. Whether it was raking all day, fixing the sewage system, splitting wood, or working on the bulldozer, nothing was beyond his dignity. He was beyond humble with his work and he never flaunted that he was the owner and designer. When the course was finally opened and he had completed the building phase, Steve could most often be found on the golf course from dusk to dawn looking and working like a laborer. Golfers would often speak to him and have no idea that the man they were talking to was the architect who was responsible for the beauty that they were seeing and experiencing.

He joked that his hands were like Picasso, but he was a different type of artist. His canvas was not a blank sheet of paper, but rather a forest of trees, and he did not use paintbrushes to create his masterpiece, but rather a bulldozer and a chainsaw. He was an architect, but his supplies were not concrete, wood, and glass, but rather grass, sand and water. He was a doctor, but not of sick and injured people, but of grass. For him, he had nineteen patients and his job was to make sure that every summer and every winter all nineteen patients were as healthy as possible despite the days of drought, the days that were cold, and the days that were hot and muggy. He went to great lengths to keep all of those patients as healthy as possible. When disease struck he did not prescribe drugs, but rather chemicals and water. Much like a parent, he did not have a favourite hole, but he said each was unique and special in its own way and each hole had its challenges during the building process. For Steve, when you asked him how he was able to build the course he would say things like “God worked through me, I had no training, I didn’t even know how to drive a bulldozer when I first started. But, I had a feeling and a dream, and I am truly not sure how I was able to do what I did”.

For Steve the golf course was more than just a material thing, it was his heart and soul. It was a labor of love, a passion, and a dream. Through building the golf course and campground he created a place that has brought many people laughs, happiness, and solace in their trying times. It turned employees into friends and friends into family. Once people came to the valley they found peace, tranquility, and comfort in the serenity of the beauty. We can thank Steve for creating a place that has allowed for many memories to be made. He was an inspiration. He was like a modern-day superhero who wore many hats and managed to touch the lives of many people. He was a loyal friend, he was a great brother, a wonderful husband, and the most supportive and loving dad that a daughter could ask for.
He passed along many life lessons and he will be missed dearly by many friends and family. He fought hard during his short battle with cancer and although his masterpiece may not have been finished we know he is perfecting his golf game in heaven. A celebration of life will take place at a later date to pay tribute to Steve.

Thank you to the staff of St. Elizabeth’s Health Care and Dr. Mulé who allowed Steve to enjoy his final weeks at home in the comfort of his family and friends. In Steve’s memory, donations may be made to the Hospital for Sick Children or the Northumberland Hills Hospital.

Due to the COVID restrictions, there will be a private funeral for the family next week. In lieu of a wake a drive-by parade will be held on Sunday, June 28 at 1 pm open to all who wish to come and pay their respects. We ask that you meet at the Grafton arena parking lot at 12:45. In order to minimize our impact on local traffic we will proceed from the Grafton arena on Highway 2 east to Vernonville Road. We will then take Vernonville Road north to Telephone Road and west on Telephone Road to the park entrance. At this point the family will be present near the mini golf for you to pay your respects. When leaving we ask that you proceed south on Shelter Valley Road. Please do not leave your vehicle at any point.

Message Of Condolence

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MESSAGES OF CONDOLENCE / DONATIONS

Gord Linda Thompson - July 21, 2020

Are thoughts are with the family. We new Steve for many years. Good all around person.

Susan Murray - July 13, 2020 DONATION

A Memorial Donation has been made to the following charity:

Canadian Cancer Society

Jeff Gillott - July 13, 2020

Terrible to hear. Fond memories of this man. He once stopped everyone from teeing off, caught up to Sean King and myself, and played the last few holes with us. Really nice, friendly guy.

Don Mann - July 11, 2020 DONATION

A Memorial Donation has been made to the following charity:

Northumberland Hills Hospital Foundation

Lauren Maclean - July 9, 2020 DONATION

A Memorial Donation has been made to the following charity:

SickKids Foundation

Tony Weatherby - July 9, 2020

I am so sorry for your loss of Steve . He was a fine gentleman and entrepreneur. I know how you feel and I send prayers and good vibes in your healing process.

Linda and Frank - July 8, 2020

Our thoughts and prayers go out to you Jane and your family. Steve will be truly missed. Our deepest sympathy.

Martin & Cindy Blower - July 6, 2020 DONATION

A Memorial Donation has been made to the following charity:

SickKids Foundation

Joe Forster - July 6, 2020 DONATION

A Memorial Donation has been made to the following charity:

SickKids Foundation

Carol, Steve and Lane - July 3, 2020 DONATION

A Memorial Donation has been made to the following charity:

SickKids Foundation

Brian Drumm - July 2, 2020

Our deepest condolences to Jane and Danielle from the Drumm Family!! My family and our parents were all neighbours in the Oshawa Days! My son Nate played on the St Mary’s golf team together!! Steve’s brother Bill and I would be same age!! What an amazing story and eulogy as our prayers go out to your family at this tough time! Prayers to Jane and Danielle Brian Drumm

Janet Newman-Phillips - July 2, 2020 DONATION

A Memorial Donation has been made to the following charity:

Northumberland Hills Hospital Foundation

Bobbie Rood - July 1, 2020

Jane and Danielle; Such beautiful words for a good man. I remember Steve explaining a concussion to me when Molli and Danielle played hockey together. My sincere condolences for your loss.

Gary mclean - July 1, 2020 DONATION

A Memorial Donation has been made to the following charity:

SickKids Foundation

Cora Fulford - July 1, 2020 DONATION

A Memorial Donation has been made to the following charity:

Northumberland Hills Hospital Foundation

Cindy & Dennis Sherwin - July 1, 2020

Heartfelt condolences to all the family as you go through this most difficult time. RIP Steve.❤️❤️❤️

Vicki, Bob and Molli Brown - June 30, 2020

Jane and Danielle we are so very sorry to hear about Steve. He was definitely one of a kind and we're grateful we had the opportunity to get to know him. Our sincere condolences.

Ted Jackson - June 30, 2020 DONATION

A Memorial Donation has been made to the following charity:

Northumberland Hills Hospital Foundation

Ted & Gina Jackson, Jordan, Mitchell and Rachel - June 30, 2020

We are so sad to learn of the passing of Steve. We are blessed to have known him and will always feel his presence when playing the fantastic course that he somehow was able to carve through the wildnerness. To Jane, Danielle and all of the extended family we offer our deepest condolences.

The Millers - June 30, 2020

Although we never met Steve we have heard so much about him from our long time great neighbours Bert and Shelley. Jane I knew you briefly years ago from work and our kids Teagan and Danielle were the same age and we visited the park once before. Our deepest condolences to all of you for your incredible loss. Many do little in a very long life but Steve has left the most incredible legacy with that beautiful golf course and park only he could see from trees and hills. We had the pleasure of driving around it with Bert and Shelley and it has such an incredible feel of peace and tranquillity not like any other golf course I have seen. To be able to look out and see him everywhere in the park and golf course will bring you comfort and smiles, knowing he is there. Deepest sympathy to you and your family The Millers

Linda Simmo s - June 30, 2020

Dear Jane and family, Our deepest sympathy for the loss of your husband Steve, thinking of you during this difficult time Linda Simmons

Hope Bailey - June 30, 2020

What a lovely tribute to Steve. We agree with all that was said and we emphasize that most importantly he was a great Husband and Father. We Love you all. Hope & Kirk

greg and barb linton - June 30, 2020 DONATION

A Memorial Donation has been made to the following charity:

SickKids Foundation

Leslie Nagy - June 30, 2020 DONATION

A Memorial Donation has been made to the following charity:

SickKids Foundation

Roger Hardy - June 29, 2020

For Jane and Family You have my sincere condolences! I will always remember Steve as passionate, humble and successful at all of his ventures. He made his own luck and in a quiet and proud way. Grateful to have met Steve in my life. Sincerely Roger Hardy

Mary Price - June 29, 2020

Jane and Danielle Hearing of Steve’s illness and subsequent death left me speechless. Our high school group was enriched because of Steve’s presence. His legacy of generosity, kindness, and a vision of what is now Shelter Valley Pines Golf course and Park will be a tribute to who Steve was. My sincere condolences to you both and may the memories and solace carry you through the days ahead.

Hank Vandermeer - June 29, 2020 DONATION

A Memorial Donation has been made to the following charity:

Northumberland Hills Hospital Foundation

The Stratford Family - June 28, 2020 DONATION

A Memorial Donation has been made to the following charity:

Northumberland Hills Hospital Foundation

John & Vicki Vanderwel - June 28, 2020 DONATION

A Memorial Donation has been made to the following charity:

SickKids Foundation

RICK&SHIRLEY McBRIDE(nee SPENCE) - June 28, 2020

WE ARE TRULY SORRY TO HEAR OF STEVE'S PASSING. SHIRLEY WORKED AT THE STORE 45 YEARS AGO AND HAS A LOT OF GOOD MEMORIES OF THE SAWYER FAMILY. CHERISH THE MEMORIES ALWAYS. I REMEMBER THE MINI PUTT AS I INSTALLED THE ARTIFICIAL TURF WHEN THEY FIRST BUILT IT. WHAT MEMORIES.

Marilyn and Tyler Soundy - June 28, 2020

Our hearts are breaking for you. We are so sorry for your loss. Steve left behind a beautiful family and an amazing legacy. He made such an amazing happy place for so many people. We all have our special memories of Steve that will warm our hearts and bring a smile to our faces. Condolences to the family. Love and hugs from Marilyn and Tyler Soundy

Tami Callahan - June 28, 2020

Jane, Danielle and family. I was shocked and saddened to learn of Steve’s illness and subsequent death. What a significant loss for you and for the community. My thoughts are with you as you move forward during the coming weeks and months.

Dave and Carol Scott - June 28, 2020

I’m so sorry for your loss. My sister and her husband camp at your park and love it. We did visit once and stayed over night . We found your hospitality was very kind. Sending prayer to you and your family. My sister is Lee Vanderham

Beth Goddard - June 28, 2020

I am so sorry to hear of Steve’s passing. I went to high school with Steve and worked with him briefly afterwards. He was always a joy to be around, full of life and thought kindly of people. May your wonderful memories of him carry you through this sad time. Beth Goddard

Bill Vignault - June 28, 2020

So sorry about your loss steve was a great man and friend.he will be missed

Isabelle Hoselton - June 28, 2020 DONATION

A Memorial Donation has been made to the following charity:

Northumberland Hills Hospital Foundation

George & Renaye Arbourne - June 28, 2020

Jane and Danielle We are sorry to hear of the loss of Steve. Our thoughts are with you at this difficult time. George & Renaye Arbourne

Janice Taylor - June 28, 2020

Jane & Danielle, we are so sorry for your loss...we cannot imagine what you are going through right now, but we offer our deepest condolences. Janice & Gary Taylor

Donna & Ivan Blanchard - June 28, 2020

So sorry for your loss Daniele snd Jane. Danielle we did not know you dad but it seems like he was an amazing dad, husband, business owner and friend. Our thoughts and prayers are with you during this challenging time.

Debbie & Shawn McBride - June 28, 2020

Jane, Danielle and the Sawyer family, sending our heartfelt condolences to you all. Lots of great memories at the rink when Danielle and Kayla played hockey together. Danielle's biggest fan. Go get em Buck! Steve will be dearly missed by all.

Randy and Judy Jones - June 28, 2020

Our heartfelt condolences to Jane, Danielle and all of the Sawyer Family. We spent many years as our children were growing up camping seasonally at Shelter Valley. Everyone who witnessed Steve around the campground knew he was a hard worker. We have and continue to golf at the wonderful golf course he brought to life through his vision and hard work. It is clear through this wonderful obituary that Steve was admired, respected and most of all loved by his family and those who were apart of his life. He will be remembered and thought of with respect. He will forever be apart of Shelter Valley. Judy, Randy, Meaghan and Michael Jones and families.

Teresa & Jim Smith and Family - June 28, 2020

Jane, Danielle & Family, we are so heartbroken for you over the loss of a wonderful, hardworking and kindhearted husband and father. He will truly be missed and fondly remembered by us all with memories from the chats on the course and at the arenas over the years. The chant of “Go Buck” will be forever cherished by all in the hockey community. Our thought and prayers are with you.

Blaine Darling - June 28, 2020

So sorry to hear of Steve’s passing, so unique in his own way , yet such a down to earth person. He will truly be missed. My thoughts and prayers go to your family at this most difficult time.

Stan Rogers & Family - June 28, 2020

Heartfelt condolences to Jane, Danielle & the entire Sawyer family. He will be dearly missed.

Steve Tunney - June 28, 2020

We are so sorry for your loss. He will truly be missed by all. I am sure that Mike and Moe will be waiting at the gate with open arms to greet him.

Mike Highfield - June 28, 2020

Steve really was a great guy, welcomed us to the golf course and often wouldn’t take our money! We would have a few socialables while playing pong after dark. Some really good memories and I was truly in awe of him and his vision! My condolences to the family, the world was a better place with Steve around.

Peter And Edward Logel & Family - June 27, 2020

Dear Jane and Danielle As you know, your husband/dad will be truly missed. I will remember him as the guy that always had a smile on his face and I will never forget the hockey games I played against Steve. We would than go on to watch our kids play together years later. Where does the time go? Hold him close and keep smiling. He would like that. Thoughts and prayers.

Brad, Lianne and Ryan Page - June 27, 2020

Sorry for your loss. We always enjoyed the company of the Sawyers. Myrtle Beach, Quebec, Durham Tour.... Steve was there - right in the middle of the conversation. We loved every minute. Brad, Lianne and Ryan

Scott and Terri-Lynn Armstrong - June 27, 2020

Jane and Danielle, we are heartbroken to hear about your husband and dad. Steve was a fun guy that loved watching you play hockey Danielle. We’re so very sorry for your loss. I know 100% that Steve is in glory...rejoicing and in perfect body. Our time apart is just a brief moment and he’s awaiting your reunion! We’re sad. We’re also praying for you. With much love Scott and Terri-Lynn Armstrong.

Alfons Casteels - June 27, 2020

I was saddened to hear of Steve's passing. He was taken from his family, friends and playground much too soon. We will always have fond memories of Steve. He truly was a good man. Alfons and Dianne

Jennifer & Barry Ashley - June 27, 2020

We are so very sorry to hear of Steve's passing. Loving thoughts and prayers to the family at this sad time. xo

George Taylor - June 27, 2020

Jane and Danielle, We are sorry to hear of Steve's passing. Our kids always had a great time at the park.Please give our condolences to the rest of your family. May he rest in peace. Love Mary Lou and George.

Philip Mead - June 27, 2020

Very sorry to hear the news our prayers are with you at this sad time

Cindi Foley - June 27, 2020

My deepest sympathies to Jane, Danelle and family. I spent many years, (40+) at Shelter Valley Park as a seasonal camper, where I met Steve and the Sawyers. Steve was always a hard worker, but never too busy to stop and say hello or wave as he drove by. He will be missed by many. Jane and Danelle, Im sending you a hug and my deepest condolences. Love Cindi, Dave, Mitchel, Joselyn and Nathan Foley

Robert Vanderwel - June 27, 2020 DONATION

A Memorial Donation has been made to the following charity:

SickKids Foundation

Eileen Paulsen - June 27, 2020 DONATION

A Memorial Donation has been made to the following charity:

Northumberland Hills Hospital Foundation

Dave Brown and Dagmar Busshoff - June 27, 2020

When I met Steve out on the course he was always very friendly and open. His immense passion for his course was evident as he told stories of how he designed and worked out certain areas. A great guy who made a great course and will be greatly missed.

Judy McCarten - June 27, 2020

Jane, We are so sorry to hear of your painful loss. Don and I hope you and your family can find some consolation down the road in your memories, and your environment. Hugs and comfort! xoxo Don & Judy

Albert Botha - June 27, 2020

We are truly sorry about you loss. Steve was a brilliant man and build the best golf course. I always enjoyed speaking to him on the course. He will be missed

Albert Botha - June 27, 2020

We are truly sorry about you los Steve was a brilliant man and build the best golf course I always enjoyed speaking to him on the course He will be missed

Donna Bekkema-Pace - June 27, 2020

So so sorry for your loss. Steve was such a great guy,

Rick cusimano - June 26, 2020

My family and I spent many years as seasonal campers at the park , from 1984 until 1993, the best times in my life. Steve was always a gentleman and a great guy and there for us at all times. To bad he is gone too soon . I will always remember him , god bless and Rest In Peace Steve, amen .

Patricia & Allan Greer - June 26, 2020 DONATION

A Memorial Donation has been made to the following charity:

Northumberland Hills Hospital Foundation

Patricia Greer - June 26, 2020 DONATION

A Memorial Donation has been made to the following charity:

Northumberland Hills Hospital Foundation

Larry & Sue Bowman - June 26, 2020

We are so sorry for your devastating loss. You must have many happy memories to get you through this difficult time. Our thoughts are with you.

Patricia Greer - June 26, 2020 DONATION

A Memorial Donation has been made to the following charity:

Northumberland Hills Hospital Foundation

Allan and Patricia Greer - June 26, 2020

Dear Jane, Danielle and family. We are so sad to hear of Steve's passing. What a lovely tribute to him. Steve was such a wonderful man. We thoroughly enjoyed our time as campers at Shelter Valley. He will be greatly missed, sending you our love and support at this time.

Dawn White-Chester - June 26, 2020

Dear Jane,Danielle and family. I am so sorry for your loss of a dear husband and father. Such a beautiful tribute to him in the obituary. Hugs to you both!!! Dawn.

John Godawa - June 26, 2020

To Jane, Danielle, and family. I am so sorry for your loss. Steve will be greatly missed. Not only was he one of the good people that was admired for the person he was but he was someone that people tried to be more like. My thoughts are with you during this difficult time.

Elinor Major - June 26, 2020

After reading this lovely legacy we couldn't help but notice that some of these stories were familiar to us. And then we realized that Jay had talked a lot about his uncle. What a beautiful tribute. We just wanted to wish the Sawyer and Vanderwel families condolences on what appears to have been a truly remarkable man. Sincerely, Elinor Major and Chris German (Brittany Major's mom and step dad)

Lisa Gilbert - June 26, 2020

Dear Jane, Danielle and family, We are deeply saddened to hear about Steve. Our thoughts and prayers go out to you. Please know some of our families happiest memories are from the park. I can remember Steve always giving us a wave as he drove by us. He will be missed by all. Perry and Lisa Gilbert

Jim and Tammy Militello - June 26, 2020

Dear Jane, Danielle and family; Jim and I were so saddened to hear of Steve's passing. Our hearts, love, hugs and prayers go out to you all. Steve was a great neighbor always there to help when asked and did so much for the community. This neck of the woods will not be the same without Steve and he shall never be forgotten. Your neighbors, the Militello family.

Dana and Janice Johnston - June 26, 2020

It was our distinct pleasure to know Steve and to enjoy the product of his work. So glad to have had the opportunity to tell Steve in person how impressed we where with his vision and accomplishment, and that was the first nine. Well known and well liked, a life well lived. Rest in peace. Dana and Janice Johnston

Rebecca Gray - June 26, 2020

Jane, Danielle, and family. I'm so sorry to hear about Steve. Throughout the summer that I worked at the golf course, I always enjoyed talking with him. He was a great man. Thinking of you and your family. - Rebecca Gray

Bill and Cathy Dunlop - June 26, 2020

Dear Jane and family,we were saddened and shocked to hear of Steve’s passing. Our thoughts and prayers are with you during this difficult time.

Kim Bryden - Bouchard - June 26, 2020

Dear Jane, Danielle and family, I'm so saddened by this news and my heart breaks for you. Sending my deepest condolences at this very difficult time. Steve was a wonderful person and will be dearly missed.

Breanna Luis - June 26, 2020

My thoughts and prayers are with everyone. Growing up at the park and seeing all the changes as my life went on, everyone was family there. Steve was a great man and will always hold a special spot in mine and my families heart. Steve once said to me as a child " you make a life that's worth living " as I got older those words have always been in the back of my head. May he rest in peace ! I'm so very sorry for you loss! Breanna, Dylan , Amber, Brandon & Jorge Luis

Andrea Mann - June 26, 2020 DONATION

A Memorial Donation has been made to the following charity:

SickKids Foundation

Kelly and Jim Goody - June 26, 2020

Jane and Danielle Words don’t seem adequate enough to say how sorry I am to hear about Steve. He was a true amazing guy and I’m so sorry for your loss...thinking of you! Kelly & Jim and Kate Goody Bailey, Brad & Karin

Cathy Spiers - June 26, 2020

Jane & Danielle we are so sorry to hear about Steve. Our thoughts are with you at this difficult time. Cathy Spiers & Roma Mackinnon

Eric and Sheila Ainsworth - June 26, 2020

Jane and Daniella, we are so very sad that Steve had to go but he went with love and admiration from all that knew him. The words you used to describe Steve and his life were awesome and really tells what kind of a man Steve was. He will be missed always. Love to all the Sawyer family and you are in our prays at this time. Be strong and know Steves going to be playing golf in heaven and there is no more pain. Love always Eric Sheila and Skyler

Terri Adkins - June 26, 2020

Jane & Danielle, we were so saddened and shocked to hear of the passing of Steve. We have many fond memories of a fellow Montreal Canadien fan and his easy smile and kindness. What a wonderful tribute to read written for a man devoted to his family and who lived his passion, followed his dream and fulfilled it. What a legacy he has left behind. Our deepest condolences, Terri, Rick, Melissa & Danielle Adkins

Kathy Haley - June 26, 2020

Dear Jane, I was so saddened to hear of Steve’s passing. Although I didn’t know him, I was aware of what a hard worker he was and was alway amazed at him undertaking the construction of a golf course. He must have been an amazing man! My thoughts and prayers are with you and your family at this difficult time.

Karen Wolfe - June 26, 2020

Jane & Danielle, We were shocked and saddened by the passing of Steve. The obituary was beautifully written. We were lucky to have shared many good times with all of you at the CMU golf tournaments, especially the Sedona Arizona trip. Our thoughts and prayers are with you. Love Karen & Andy Wolfe & Family

Pat & Shelley Rutherford and Family - June 26, 2020 DONATION

A Memorial Donation has been made to the following charity:

Northumberland Hills Hospital Foundation

Vic Arsenault - June 26, 2020

Jane, Danielle what a wonderful tribute to Steve on behalf of Dana, Ryan & myself our thoughts, condolences and prayers are fovever in our minds

Dalton and Heather McDonald - June 26, 2020

Jane, Danielle and all of your family... we are so very sorry to hear about Steve . The obituary told the story of a very great and humble man . He was admired and loved by many .. family , church family, neighbours , friends and all of his Shelter Valley campground family . Our heartfelt sympathy to all of you . RIP Steve .

Gord Krentz - June 26, 2020

I am deeply saddened to hear of Steve's passing. I've known Steve since high school at CDCI East. He and I were also part of the first group of Haldimand Township Volunteer Fire Fighters. Seems like just yesterday. My deepest condolences to Jane, Danielle and the entire Sawyer family. Rest in peace Steve.

Jim , Suzanne, Kelly and John O’Rourke - June 26, 2020

Miss seeing him working on the course . He was always there truly a labour of love . Thinking of you 💗

Suzanne Liptay - June 26, 2020

A wonder man! I'm so sorry for your great loss.

ken stoker - June 26, 2020

Very sorry to hear the sad new of Steve's passing. My condolences to his family. He was owed a ton and everyone with any interest in golf admired what he achieved with the ongoing development of his golf course. Ken Stoker Cobourg Creek Golf Club.

Laura Hardy - June 26, 2020 DONATION

A Memorial Donation has been made to the following charity:

SickKids Foundation

Laura and Fred Hardy - June 26, 2020

Jane and Danielle we are so sorry for your loss. We are also thinking of Bill, Mike, Paul and their families. I have many happy memories of our family times in Oshawa and at Shelter Valley. Steve was a wonderful guy! He always had a big smile and a warm hug. Our times together were always full of fun and laughter. I will really miss you cousin! Love, Laura & Fred

Peter Shaw - June 26, 2020

So saddened to hear of Steve's passing. I was fortunate to get to know Steve through our Lively Open group and then attending the Fall Tournament at " The Woods". While there were always 5 people asking for his attention, Steve always took the time to make sure he gave you his time. My deepest sympathies go out to his immediate family and loved ones and his work family and many friends. Rest in Peace Steve

Joe & Ellen Forster - June 26, 2020

Dear Jane , Danielle & family, We are saddened to hear of Steve's passing. He was a great friend and inspiration for us. We are grateful that he was able to be part of our lives and we will cherish his memories forever. God bless, Joe , Ellen & family.

Kim (Munn) Goebel - June 26, 2020

So sorry to hear about Steve's passing. He was a huge part of the community and his loss will be felt by all.

ROBB MCNAMARA - June 26, 2020

I knew Steve by occasionally playing golf with friends on his masterpiece. I was told by my minister at the time when my father passed,I was young and didn't understand. He said, my father is not gone, only the body that carried his soul is and his soul will live on through the lives that he touched in the many ways that he was known to them. I wish you the best and he will always be there with you.

Dave Cromlish - June 26, 2020

Jane and Family; My most sincere condolences on the loss of such a great guy. Truly amazing hearing the story behind the golf course but I also remember the good natured guy walking the halls of CDCI East. My prayers are with you

Dean & Rheanne Smith - June 26, 2020

Jane & Danielle We were so saddened to hear of Steve's passing. Our deepest sympathy goes out to you both. We had so enjoyed getting to know you during our time at Shelter Valley.

Ward & Penny Beebe - June 26, 2020

Our thoughts are with you Jane during this sad time. Our condolences to the entire Sawyer family.

W Brian Scholfield - June 26, 2020 DONATION

A Memorial Donation has been made to the following charity:

SickKids Foundation

Brian Scholfield - June 26, 2020

So sad to hear about Steve. The description of his life, especially at Shelter Valley and that golf course, is a great testament - Steve was much loved and will be missed. Sincere condolences to Jane, Danielle and family.

Allan and Joan Ross - June 26, 2020

We are sorry for the loss of a great man. He created a terrific golf course; we will think of him as we play. We will miss seeing him working on the course and chatting with him, but know he’ll be watching over the course. Rest In Peace

Wendy Quillan - June 26, 2020

Our sincerest condolences to the family. My Mom (Joan Good & David Doran) found this campground over 30 or so years ago, placed a trailer and have not left. They are both deceased, however they absolutely loved it. My brother Dan is still there. There are so many fabulous memories of this vision you the Sawyer family had. Always accommodating. My daughters met many friends and enjoyed the campground immensely over their childhood years. I know Mom & Dave are sending their love & appreciation for all you did. Thankyou for that. Jane & Danielle know that there is no more pain and God is taking care of him now. 💔💔💔 Mike/Wendy Melissa/Carrie/Cassandra

Danielle Rock - June 26, 2020

Danielle I was shocked to hear of your father’s passing. We shared many conversations about you at the chiropractic office and he beamed when speaking of you and just how proud he was of you. Your Dad was a great man who left way too soon. I pray your memories will sustain you until you meet again. My condolences to you, your Mom and all the extended families.

Fred, Tracey, Nicole and Corey Saman - June 26, 2020

Jane and Danielle, We are so sorry to hear about Steve’s passing. He was a great man. We will cherish the many memories made throughout the hockey years at the arena and golf course. Thinking of you and your family.

david and deborah riggin - June 25, 2020 DONATION

A Memorial Donation has been made to the following charity:

Northumberland Hills Hospital Foundation

Dennis and Kelly Colosky - June 25, 2020

Our hearts and prayers to Jane and Danielle sorry for your loss. Steve seemed to always have a smile and was very friendly and talkative. He will be missed.

Donna Margles - June 25, 2020

Jane and family. My deepest condolences. My thoughts are with you during this tragic time.

Jeanie Haig - June 25, 2020

Jane,Danielle the entire Sawyer family So very sorry to hear of the passing of Steve. What a great guy and what a beautiful tribute

Jackie and scott bellamy - June 25, 2020

So sorry for your loss Jane and danielle. Our thoughts and prayers are with you during this difficult time.

Rick and Eleanor Luera - June 25, 2020

Jane, Our hearts a full of sadness at the loss of Steve. May you find peace in a lifetime of memories. Please know we are thinking of you and wish we could be there to lend comfort. Love Rick, Eleanor and Peach

Rob Cochrane/Barb Phillips - June 25, 2020

We are very sorry to learn of Steve’s death today. I first met Steve shortly after he finished school and was working at Barbs ‘Fitness Plus‘ facility in Cobourg. After the fitness club closed we did not meet again until golfing at the ‘Valley’ one day and as you said, his hands were dirty and he was knee deep in his work. It was great for both of us to meet Steve again after many years. Our sympathies go out to all his family.

Cindy Greer & Joe Ferguson - June 25, 2020

Jane & Danielle, Someone so special can never be forgotten. Our deepest sympathy and prayers to you and your family, Steve will deeply be missed. Cindy & Joe

Stephen and Heather Wilson - June 25, 2020

Very sad to hear of Steve's passing. He was a really good guy. My in-laws had a trailer at the park for quite a few years. (Anne and Alex Aitcheson) and they very much enjoyed their time there and the way Steve always took care of things. Our thoughts are with all of you at this time.

Dave Perry - June 25, 2020

Steve- nobody mentioned yer puck handling and skating. You are a beauty and I'm bummed out it's so much of a shock. Shit. my regards to all your many close friends that depended on you and you depended on them. shit . 30 yrs too short. shit dave perry

Rob Cochrane/Barb Phillips - June 25, 2020

We are very sorry to learn of Steve’s death today. I first met Steve shortly after he finished school and was working at Barbs ‘Fitness Plus‘ facility in Cobourg. After the fitness club closed we did not meet again until golfing at the ‘Valley’ one day and as you said, his hands were dirty and he was knee deep in his work. It was great for both of us to meet Steve again after many years. Our sympathies go out to all his family.

Carmel Scott - June 25, 2020

Steve, you have left very big shoes to fill. May you continue to persue your goals ,"With" God.

frank & kathy ambrosie - June 25, 2020

sorry for your loss

Patricia Mcmullen - June 25, 2020

Jane I am so very very sorry for the loss of your spouse...prayers are being sent to you and your family...

Kym Blackburn - June 25, 2020

My heart goes out to Jane and Danielle and all of the Family at this very sad time. I am thinking of the golf course and the campground and all of the relaxation and happiness that was provided to many families over the years. There are so many people that will miss Steve. Although he left this earth plane too early, his was a life well lived. My deepest sympathy, Kym Blackburn

Jackie krakenberg - June 25, 2020

My warmest thoughts and prayers are with you all at this time of great sadness. Steve will be missed by many. ⛳️ May peace and strength be with you

Kymandalu Blackburn - June 25, 2020 DONATION

A Memorial Donation has been made to the following charity:

SickKids Foundation

Dr Michael Dillon - June 25, 2020

Only recently did I hear of Steve's illness via some of the former CDCI East classmates. It hardly seems fair or right to lose someone so young... but the legacy of love and care and greenery will live on. Reading about the golf course almost sounds like the plot of a movie! I wish I actually played the game well to fully appreciate that life's effort. Having not seen Steve or family for decades, it means I will always remember Steve as that handsome, athletic guy with a smile on his face and hair even longer than mine. I wish you fond recollection and solace.

Danielle Hall - June 25, 2020 DONATION

A Memorial Donation has been made to the following charity:

SickKids Foundation

Don Morrison - June 25, 2020

I have had the pleasure of being a member of one of the first foursomes to play on Steve's course and our group has continued playing it weekly ever since because we greatly admired his unique accomplishments in building Shelter Valley Pines. We frequently met him working on the course and he always took the time to chat with us and talk about his ongoing ideas for its development. He was obviously very proud of what he had accomplished and rightfully so. He simply built the best mid length golf course I know of, at a time when this concept was unproven. It has given us and many others immense pleasure and we will always appreciate the legacy he has left behind for so many of us to enjoy in the years to come. We are very sorry that Steve left us so early and was not able to fully enjoy the fruits of his labour as his dream matured. Our thoughts are with him and his family, who also worked very hard in supporting him and who we expect will ensure that his vision is continued.

Terry & Happy Cameron - June 25, 2020

Dear Jane and Danielle, our hearts go out to you both In this very difficult time💕 Steve and you two have been our SVP family for 20 years. He will be missed very much by all who knew him. Hugs to you and all your family, Happy, Terry, Kyle and Katrina

Jenny Duda and Will Richardson - June 25, 2020

Dear Danielle and Jane, Will and I are deeply sorry to hear of Steve's passing. Steve's remarkable vision of a golf course blew us away at all the fine details and hard determined labour to deliver an exquisite blend of nature with the game of golf. He truly was a passionate artist using land and trees to make his masterpiece. We have had so many family hours of joy there. Will discovered his love of golf at Shelter Valley Pines. You truly had one extraordinarily proud dad Danielle. It was an honour to know him and he will be visible to us in all the beautiful angles of the course. Our hearts are with you at this difficult time.

Janice Marion - June 25, 2020

Love, hugs and kisses to each and everyone of you. 🤗🤗❤️❤️ You are all in my thoughts Steve was one in a million He will be dearly missed by many many people ❤️❤️🙏🏻🙏🏻

Lori Giroux - June 25, 2020

So sorry to hear about Steve. He was an amazing man and an inspiration to everyone. Thoughts and prayers go out to your family and he will be sadly missed . Lori and ken Giroux.

Randy Richardson - June 25, 2020

Jane. Sorry to hear about Steve. He leaves behind a wonderful legacy in both your Danielle and his extraordinary work of art ... the golf course.

Lori Giroux - June 25, 2020

Our sincere condolences go out to your family. He was such an amazing man . Steve will truly be missed by everyone. Thoughts and prayers are with you during this difficult time.

Pam Schick - June 25, 2020

Jane and Danielle, The boys and I are sorry for your loss. Steve was a fine gentleman. It was always enjoyable to talk to him at the office and hear all about Danielle's accomplishments on the golf course. He was very proud of you. Pam, James and Brady Schick

Rob and Cyndy (nee Forster) Harper - June 25, 2020

Our sincere condolences Jane, Danielle and family, such a wonderful man. Please know you are all in our thoughts and prayers

Judi Eakins - June 25, 2020

Jane and Danielle, My heart goes out to you at this sad time. I spent 22 years in Shelter Valley Park, and enjoyed every day there. So many of my camping friends are gone, who would have felt the same as I. Steve was good and kind. He worked with a fervour to accomplish his dreams. Shelter Valley Park and The Pines, will never be the same.

Steve Suzanne Jenn and Kate Saman - June 25, 2020

So sorry for your loss. Steve was a wonderful and kind man. You are in our prayers.

Jennifer Hagen - June 25, 2020

Jane So sorry to hear very recently of Steve's illness and then subsequent death. Much too early, too much yet left to do; my thoughts are with you and your daughter at this tough time.

Darlene McAloney - June 25, 2020

Our deepest condolences to Jane, Danielle and family. We are glad we were apart of SVP for 15yrs. We got to know Steve and he was truly an amazing man. Steve will truly be missed by all. Kaitlin, Kyle, Darlene & Ron McAloney

Jennifer Hagen - June 25, 2020 DONATION

A Memorial Donation has been made to the following charity:

Northumberland Hills Hospital Foundation

Kim Donegan - June 25, 2020

My deepest sympathies to Steve’s family and friends! I was truly saddened to hear of Steve’s death . I had the privilege of working with Steve at a fitness centre in his early years! He was an amazing guy with many talents ! He will be truly missed! RIP my friend !

Judi Gill - June 25, 2020

Jane,Danielle and family. Jeff and I are so very,very sorry to hear of Steve's passing. Please know we are thinking of you both during this very difficult time. Please accept our heartfelt condolences. Jeff and Judi Gill and family.

Arlis O'Neill - June 25, 2020

Jane I am so sorry about Steve’s passing, I so clearly remember his energy and constant smile ear to ear. Sending all my love and energy to you, Danielle and the rest of the family through this sad time! Lots of love Arlis

Michael Stephenson and Bernadette Murray-Stephenson - June 25, 2020

Our deepest condolences to Jane and Danielle and all the family. It was a privilege to have known Stephen. In the same way that he built the golf course, he also built community around him. That is very evident in the words spoken of him by those who knew him.

Gord, Ann & Nick Oosterhof - June 25, 2020

Jane and Danielle, we are very sorry for your loss. We have many fond memories walking the course with Steve watching the kids golf tournaments. Our thoughts and prayers are with you during this time.

Lakeland Multi-trade Inc - June 25, 2020 DONATION

A Memorial Donation has been made to the following charity:

Northumberland Hills Hospital Foundation

Debra & James - June 25, 2020

Our prayers and thoughts are with you Jane and Danielle, at this most difficult time. We were privileged to know Steve, albeit a short time. But I have a sneaky feeling he's already meeting with my dad and planning a new golf course in Heaven! You go, Steve! My dad was an avid golfer. He'll have lots to share with you!

Patricia Murphy - June 25, 2020

Jane & Danielle: I am so sorry for your loss of a dear husband and a "cool" dad. The obituary is such a wonderful tribute to such an unique gentleman! Who else could make a swimming pond, an eighteen hole golf course and get to church on time!

Isabelle Hoselton - June 25, 2020 DONATION

A Memorial Donation has been made to the following charity:

Northumberland Hills Hospital Foundation

Isabelle Hoselton - June 25, 2020

Jane and Danielle and all the family, we are so sorry for your loss, he always had smile for everyone, he will be missed. Isabelle and Norm

DeKnee - June 25, 2020

We shared many great memories together on and off the golf course. You were a great friend. I want to Thank you for always extending your generous hospitality to me and some of my close friends at Shelter valley 2 and on the golf Course. I am honoured to have been a member of The Dream Team. We have a few Crowns in our belt that we won together as a team with you being the ultimate anchor. Always welcoming a challenge. I will never forget touring the park with you on Fishing weekend and you looking me in the eye and saying. Just stand by the truck Denny and look big, as you approached campers that were having just a bit too much fun and the fire being a bit too large . It worked every time. Rest In Peace my friend. Love you always❤️⛳️🍺

Mike and Kelly Wood - June 25, 2020

Jane and Danielle, Our deepest sympathies for you both at this difficult time. Praying for comfort and trusting in the Lord to reach and hold you both with his arms of love when the lows are present. Your family helped create wonderful memories for our family at Shelter Valley.

Vince Kelly - June 25, 2020

A true friend. None better! My sincere condolences Jane and Danielle and family. Love and hugs, Vince

Karen Boyle - June 25, 2020

Our condolence to Jane and Danielle and the whole Sawyer family Steve was a great man and a real pleasure to know him he will be greatly missed R.I.P Steve Karen Boyle and Doug Hoekstra

Ed & Marg Godawa - June 25, 2020

Jane and Danielle: Our thoughts and prayers have been with you and will continue. We have fond memories of Steve at Shelter Valley Pines, always working and a forever smile. Ed and Marg

Dave & Diana Hughes - June 25, 2020

When we learned last night of Steve's passing we was completely shocked. I personally had so much respect for Steve and all that he and Jane had accomplished. His Shelter Valley Pines Golf Course is a true gem and when I remind my golf buddies from out of town that Steve built that course with his own hands, they can't believe it. To Jane and Danielle, you have lost a great father, brother, uncle, and all-around great guy. Our thoughts and prayers are with you and your family during this dark time.

Brenda Casteels - June 25, 2020

To Steve's wife Jane, his daughter Danielle and all of his Family; Our deepest sympathy during this difficult time. John & Brenda Casteels

William MacDonald - June 25, 2020

Steve and Jane have been long time clients and wonderful people with whom to work. Steve was an inspiration to all in my office and to me personally. After his diagnosis, he told me that he was "living with the cancer and not dying from it". Right to the end, he truly seized life by the horns to make the world a better place. There is no higher praise that can be given to a person than to be able to say the world is a better place for their having been in it. Steve has earned that praise because the world is better for he having been in it not only because of the park and golf course but because of his love and passion for family, friends and acquaintances. He is with the angels.

Sr. Donna Smith, csj - June 25, 2020

I am so sorry to hear of your loss. My thoughts and prayers are with you and the whole family.

Jackie Innis - June 25, 2020

Jane Danielle and the SawyerFamily My sincere condolences.You have lost a special person.Steve was one of a kind always a hug when we met. Was friends of his mom and dad for years. May He Rest In Peace.

Jackie Innis - June 25, 2020

Jane Danielle and the SawyerFamily My sincere condolences.You have lost a special person.Steve was one of a kind always a hug when we met. Was friends of his mom and dad for years. May He Rest In Peace.

Fr. David - June 25, 2020

Dear Jane and Danielle--my deep sorrow at Steve's passing--and my prayers for you and your family members. Feeling so far away from you right now, but the Good Shepherd brings us all close at this time.--Fr David

Judi Peers - June 25, 2020

So sorry to hear of your great loss, Jane and Danielle. After reading this wonderful tribute I wish I had known Steve better. What an amazing life! Shelter Valley will always be dear to the entire West family's heart. We didn't travel too far afield when we were younger, but our visit to Shelter Valley for a picnic each summer was always a highlight. Fond memories of that rickety slide. Judi and Dave Peers

Newman Insurance - June 25, 2020 DONATION

A Memorial Donation has been made to the following charity:

Northumberland Hills Hospital Foundation

Kelley Hennessey and family - June 25, 2020

I am so sorry for your loss. Steve created many wonderful family memories for so many who had the privledge to know him or the wonderful creation he dreamt of and made. We will cherish those memories.

Donna M Logel - June 25, 2020

Deepest sympathies on the loss of Steve

Rick and Jen (Keller) Nelson - June 25, 2020

Jane, Danielle, and Family We are so saddened by the news of Steve's passing. You've always been "the park" and fondly remember going there when they first put the mini putt in. I remember him being a very active Dad watching Danielle as I coached her and he was always supportive. There was never a doubt that she was the apple of his eye. Know that you are in our thoughts and the memories you created will help you through this time. Rick and Jen

Douglas Mann - June 25, 2020

Jane and Danielle: Sincerest condolences on the loss of a great husband, father, architect,... The Obituary is a beautiful and fitting tribute to a life taken far too soon. Doug

Carole-lea Dettman - June 25, 2020

Jane & Danielle, I want you to know how very sorry I am to hear of Steve's passing. A beautifully written tribute to him. My deepest condolences to you both, Carole-lea (Mary's sister)

Ed and Cheryl Beenen - June 25, 2020

Jane, Danielle and the Sawyer family our deepest condolences to you all. Steve had a very special place in Ed's heart and he will be forever in his heart. We are thinking of you all. Much love, Ed and Cheryl Beenen