Too soon and with characteristically no fanfare, Andy Rencz left us in the early hours of January 23 at the age of 66. Andy was a dedicated husband, beloved father and grandfather – and a dear friend cherished for his quiet strength, dry humour and unfailing good nature. Born to Samuel and Jean Tylasky Rencz in Camrose AB, Andy grew up the youngest of five children: Don deceased (Bonnie), Annette deceased, Doreen (Jack) and Dave (MJ). He leaves behind his wife and soulmate of 42 years, Sandy, their children Matthew (Bonnie), Amanda (Mike) and Ben (Tuuli) and adored grandchildren Ethan, Lee and Chloe. The young Andy had a passion for sports, particularly hockey, basketball (aka Snake) and squash, and was known equally for his skill and competitive spirit. It was a natural progression to move from athlete to coach, as he guided his kids through years of soccer and hockey. Andy was a keen student and earned a Bachelor of Science in Botany from the University of Alberta, a Masters’ of Science in Ecology from McGill, and finally went on to a PHD in Biochemistry from the University of New Brunswick. He completed a Post Doctoral Fellowship in Environmental Chemistry from the Geological Survey of Canada before joining Natural Resources Canada to begin an illustrious 40-year tenure. Throughout his career, Andy led a number of international projects focused on developmental issues and also worked with First Nations groups in Northern Canada. He had only been retired for two years but they were great ones – he and Sandy enjoyed their workouts at the OAC, challenging bicycle trips in Europe and spending time with their growing little brood of grandchildren. He did one last project in Mongolia in late 2018 and a colleague from that part of the world echoed what had been so often said of Andy: he was a warm, engaging and curious individual who will be sorely missed by colleagues and friends. In Lieu of flowers donations in Andy’s memory can be made to Canadian Tire Jumpstart: Giving Kids a Sporting Chance.
Friends are invited to the Central Chapel of Hulse, Playfair & McGarry, 315 McLeod Street (at O’Connor) on Sunday January 27, 2019 from 2-5pm. A Funeral Service will take place on Monday January 28, 2109 at 11am.