Schoening Funeral Service

513 Seymour Street, Kamloops, BC


Leonard Stephen Marchand

November 16, 1933June 3, 2016

The Honourable Leonard Stephen Marchand Sr., B.Sc., M.Sc., LL.D. (Hon.), P.C., O.C., O.B.C. November 16, 1933 – June 3, 2016 It is with deepest sadness that the Marchand family announces the peaceful passing of the Honourable Leonard Stephen Marchand Sr., husband, father, grandfather, politician, scientist, advocate, mentor and friend. Len had a lasting impact on all who knew him. He was a proud member of the Okanagan Nation. In 1968, only eight years after First Nations people earned the right to vote in federal elections, Len became the first status Indian to be elected to Parliament. From 1976 to 1979, he became the first person of First Nations’ ancestry to serve in the federal cabinet, first as Minister of State for Small Business and later as Minister of the Environment. Len served in the Senate from 1984 until 1998. He has received the Order of Canada, the Order of BC, the Queen’s Jubilee medal, a National Aboriginal Achievement Award and an Honorary doctorate from Thompson Rivers University in recognition of his service to his people and to Canada. Len was a humble man who came from humble beginnings. Family always came first. The love of his life was his wife of almost 56 years, Donna. He loved and was incredibly proud of his children, Lori and Len Jr. (Laurie), his grandchildren, Carling, Erin (Mitch), Caitlin, Miles, Noah and Keegan, his sisters, Margaret, Joan, Pauline and Alice, his brother, Raymond and his many, many nieces and nephews. He also loved and was proud of his parents, Joseph and Agnes, and his sisters, Mildred, Josephine and Theresa, who predeceased him. Len was a trailblazer. He graduated from Vernon High and earned a Bachelor’s degree in Agriculture from UBC and a Master’s degree in Range Management from the University of Idaho when few First Nations people had done so before him. He had a love affair with plant science and was proud to have published peer reviewed scientific papers when he worked for the federal Department of Agriculture and to have been recognized as a Distinguished Alumni by the Faculty of Land and Food Systems for Agriculture Sciences at UBC. As a politician, he demonstrated that his people could and should play an active role in the political life of this country. Len’s greatest achievements were in advancing the interests of his people, but he represented all of his constituents equally and always did what he honestly thought was best and right. Always true to himself, Len valued integrity above all else. This inspired the admiration, respect, loyalty and love of his family, friends, colleagues and staff. We will all feel his absence deeply. A public celebration of Len’s life will be held at the Arbour at the Tk’emlúps te Secwepemc powwow grounds (Kamloops, BC) at 10 a.m. on Saturday, June 11, 2016. A private graveside service will be held in Vernon, BC, the following day. The family extends their heartfelt thanks to Dr. Sigalet and the other exceptional doctors, nurses and staff who cared for Len during his stay at Royal Inland Hospital. Limlempt and kukstemc to the Tk’emlúps te Secwepemc for offering the use of their beautiful facility for the celebration on June 11. Len always said “Education is the key to the future.” If family and friends desire, donations to the Thompson Rivers University Foundation in Len’s memory would be appreciated.

ngements under the direction of Schoening Funeral Service, Kamloops, British Columbia.


  • Memorial Service Saturday, June 11, 2016


Leonard Stephen Marchand

have a memory or condolence to add?

Karilyn McAuley

May 1, 2017

I just learned of Len's passing and saddened to read of your loss. He and my Dad, Bill Dent, were friends from their days together at UBC in Agriculture. When my dad passed away in 2004 and we were going through old photos, one of the best was a picture of them at 'the Cave' in Vancouver where a laughing Len was turned towards the camera. The photo captured a moment in time of some young men and women with their whole lives ahead of them. The men pictured all became very successful members of their community. I never heard Dad speak of Len with anything less than great respect and always with a smile. I didn't know Len well as I was a small child when I met him, but I do know that he brought a smile to my Dad's face and that they had a friendship my dad treasured. I truly hope that the joy he brought to living life well endures in your hearts.

Karmin McKay

January 2, 2017

I was saddened to hear of Len's passing. He was my neighbour and excellent croquet competitor in Ottawa. He always had time for the house of single military folk next door.

Craig Barclay

June 15, 2016

I worked with and for Len during his first two elections. I couldn't have been prouder of our representative. It was because of him I became a Canadian citizen. He is fondly remembered

Jack Tearne

June 15, 2016

I was very sorry to hear of Len's passing. I remember, while living in Merritt, hearing him speak and being so impressed by his candor and demeanor. He will be missed.

June 11, 2016

Donna and family. So saddened to hear of Len's passing. Know our thoughts & prayers are with you all.

The Watsons of Appleford St.

Phil Murphy

June 11, 2016

Len Jr. and family. I have many great memories of hanging out at the Marchand house during your time in Ottawa. Your Dad (and Mom) were always great hosts, and very patient with a house full of teenagers. Len was a great man, and will be truly missed. My sincere condolences.

Cathy & Fabian

June 11, 2016

Len, Laurie and family, we are so sorry for your loss. We have been thinking of you all and we hope you take comfort in happy memories of your Dad/grandfather. Sending our love and warmest wishes to you. xoxox

Leonard and Terry Demarchi

June 10, 2016

Donna and family. Our thoughts and prayers are with you at this time. Enjoy the many memories you have enjoyed over the years. Both of you have been an important part of my family in different ways. Unfortunately I am on vacation at present time so am unable to attend the ceremony tomorrow. I will visit in the near future. Leonard

Murray McBride

June 9, 2016

One of my greatest honours was to end up seated next to Len when we were both elected to the House of Commons in 1968
I had the wonderful good fortune to get to know him well and to respect him enormously both as a colleague and friend. Truly, he was a marvellous human being, one of a kind! Murray McBride