On Tuesday. November 15th, farmer, scholar, world traveller, truck driver, loving husband and father, Marvin McLean, passed away peacefully, surrounded by his family. A man of few words, Marvin was selfless, gentle, smart and witty. He kept his dry sense of humour and farmer tenacity until the end. Given three months to live three years ago, Marvin beat the odds by a long shot. Like many things in his life, he insisted on persisting and found the humour in it all. His family lovingly jokes that he “didn’t know when to quit,” whether that be farming, working, or living.
Marvin grew up on his family farm in Sunbury until he decided to pursue further education at Queen’s University. It was there that he scored exceptionally high on intelligence testing and was told by the in-house psychiatrist his problem was that he lacked fun, given his life up to that point had been working tirelessly on a farm. Marvin took this comment seriously, dropped out of university, and ventured forth to travel the world.
Following his travels he returned home, where he became known for his progressive approach to farming, earning multiple awards for those pursuits. After many years and having eaten many pots of boiled…everything, Marvin decided it was time to open up his world once more.
He began writing letters to a pen pal listed in a farming magazine. Little did Marvin know, he would be a progressive pioneer again, this time for meeting the woman of his dreams in an unconventional way. Then a 38 year old bachelor, his life changed forever when he invited his pen pal of 5 years, Gina, to visit from the Philippines.
It is said that from the moment Gina arrived in Marvin’s life, he could be heard talking about the wonder of her cooking, among her many other attributes he looked to with marvel. His admiration for Gina could be easily seen in his loving eyes. And so it was, with a few days left in her visitor’s visa, that Marvin suggested they get in the truck and take a drive to city hall. Gina laughed the whole way.
Together, they had two children, Vi and Vaughn. Marvin taught his children by example to stay curious, open minded, and keep a sense of humour. He exemplified this even in his final hours.
Marvin will be dearly missed by his devoted wife of 39 years Gina, daughter Vi (Paul), son Vaughn (Shannon), grandchildren JD and Ezra. He is predeceased by his siblings Daniel, Alice, and Gloria. He will be missed by his sister Yvonne.
A celebration of his life will be held at a future date.
Donations can be made in Marvin’s name to the KHSC - Cancer Centre.