Age 90, of Roberts Creek, BC, died peacefully on September 16, 2021 at Christenson Village in Gibsons.
"Jack" as his friends called him, was born October 4, 1930 in West Derby, Liverpool, England to Michael and Mary (Cannon) Tiernan.
He attended elementary and high school in Liverpool before proudly serving as a radio mechanic in the Royal Navy from 1947-1954. A highlight was being stationed on the Mediterranean island of Malta. It was during this time that he learned of his mother's death in England, which affected him deeply.
After his return to England, Jack followed in his father's footsteps and laboured on the Liverpool docks for a short time before enrolling at St. Mary's College in Twickenham, where he earned a teaching certificate in Geography and Physical Education. Jack spent two years teaching in Liverpool and Slough before emigrating to Canada in 1960. His first North American teaching position was in a one-room school on Minstrel Island, in remote central B.C.
Teaching positions followed in McBride, BC, Bowness, AB, Yellowknife and Fort Simpson, NWT. He returned to BC and taught in the communities of Doe River, Lasqueti Island, Pender Harbour and finally, Roberts Creek. Jack or "Mr. Tiernan" to his students, had a strong presence in the classroom. His no-nonsense approach combined with his incisive mind ensured students were continually challenged.
Jack maintained strong views about the amount of time, effort and skills people should put into their duties and he held himself to a very high standard. Beyond teaching, Jack was deeply involved in extra-curricular programs: basketball, volleyball, soccer, rugby, track and field, tennis, badminton and gymnastics. He loved to travel with his students/athletes and purchased a van so that he could transport them not only around the Sunshine Coast, but to Vancouver, incurring all expenses personally. Highlights of his teaching career included taking a team of basketball players from Pender Harbour to England and France, as well as taking a group of Roberts Creek students to California in his van.
Jack loved sports: playing, coaching and spectating. Following his retirement, Jack could be found still playing on community teams and coaching men's and women's soccer teams well into his 70's. Later in life, he would be on the sidelines critiquing his favourite players. A lifelong fan of Liverpool Football Club, Jack took every opportunity to watch his beloved Reds on television.
Other hobbies included calligraphy, photography and travel. He loved to drive near and far, often dropping in on friends with a little treat to sweeten his visits.
Jack was predeceased by his four sisters: Pat, Eileen, Kathleen and Mary of England, his brother Michael of Australia (and his beloved German Shepherd, Kim). Jack will be remembered by many of his students and athletes whom he inspired and mentored and and whose lives he impacted. He will be missed by his Canadian "family", in particular Mary and Larry Braun, Judy and Dan Preston, Neville Judd, Sean Whalen, Andrea Aleong and John and Koree Rogers.
Rest in peace, Jack. You'll never walk alone.
No service by request.
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