The Reverend Donald Gordon Axford
August 02, 1937 – August 24, 2018
The Reverend Donald Gordon (Father Don) Axford passed away in his home on Aug. 24, 2018. Don was born in Brandon, MB, on Aug. 2nd, 1937, to Annie Berenice & Frederick Baker Axford. Predeceased by both parents, and his sister Betty Sorensen (Bob) of St Albert, Don is survived by his brother Keith (Marina) of Whiterock, BC, and many nieces, nephews, cousins, and their families as well as his dear companion, Boban George, of Kerala, India.
Don’s lifelong passion was community and he strove to foster inclusive communities throughout his life. The Rotary Club, Progressive Conservative party, YMCA, LGBTQ, and faith communities are just a few in which he was actively engaged. Don graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in Social Science from Brandon University in 1962. His interest in politics at drew him to work in the AB government where he rose to the position of policy director before completing his Master of Divinity at the University of Western Ontario (Huron College) in 1977. Ordained a priest in the Anglican church in 1978, Don served in the Diocese of Huron followed by the parishes of Banff, Stettler, Byemoor, Alix, and Bashaw, from the Diocese of Calgary. He then moved to Calgary where he held the position of Regional Dean of Drumheller and Canon Pastor of the Cathedral before retiring from full-time ministry in 2004. Don continued to minister on an occasional basis until his death. Stettler, where he served for 15 years, held a special place in Don’s heart and he returned to the town each year on the weekendbefore Mothers’ Day to celebrate a “Mothers and Others” service that he had originated to recognize loved ones left out of traditional holidays.
Don loved singing in choirs and playing piano, and he frequently provided music for church, Rotary and Canadian Club events. He traveled to the Solomon Islands, India, and European destinations. Don completed an MA in Spirituality and Liturgy in 2001, and a Master of Theology in 2009 at the age of 72. Don’s close friendship with his mother, Berenice, who lived to 102, was among Don’s greatest priorities in life.
A Celebration of Life will be held at 4:00 pm, Wednesday August 29, at St. Stephen’s Anglican Church: 1121 14 Ave SW, Calgary, Alberta
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Rotary Club of Calgary West, Reverend Donald G. Axford Student Exchange Bursary. Email firstname.lastname@example.org for details.