Merlin "Van" Julius Van de Kinder

June 1, 1931January 1, 2011

Arrangements under the direction of Victory Memorial Park Funeral Centre, Surrey, BC.

Van de Kinder, Merlin “(Van)”passed away suddenly and peacefully at home, January 1, 2011. Predeceased by his first wife Diana; his brothers Maurice and Marcel; and sister Marion. Survived by his wife, Sandy, children Sarah & Nic; his niece Lynn, nephews, David and James and their families; and many friends. Van was a kind, thoughtful and gentle soul and was always anticipating his next adventure. A Celebration of Van’s Life will be held Wednesday, January 19, 2011 at 10:00 a.m. Victory Memorial Park Funeral Centre 14831 28 Avenue, Surrey B.C. Donations can be made in Van’s memory to the Heart & Stoke Foundation.

The family invites you to participate in sharing a memory of "Van" at the Reception following the service.


  • Celebration of Life Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Merlin "Van" Julius Van de Kinder

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Elaine Saxen

January 22, 2011

Dear Sandy,

I vividly remember when I first met you at the Roaring Fork Kennel Club show in Aspen. Van brought smoked salmon from BC and you with him. I can still see the love in his eyes that he had for you. He was such a dear man. I had shown OES to him a number of times previously and was so pleased to have him (and you) come to our show. Hopefully, you have many wonderful memories of your time together. He will be greatly missed by the entire dog show community of both the US and Canada. You have my deepest sympathy.

Eric Huang

January 19, 2011

Dear Sandy and Family,

It was with a great sense of loss when I heard Van's death. Please accept my and my family's deepest condolence for your loss. No words can express our feelings and I can feel your hearts. I would like you to know that you have our greatest sympathy, and we are truely saddened.

Van had lived a meaningful life and I'm comforted that two of you had lived a happy and wonderful 16 years together. I will miss Van greatly for his calm and genuine smile.

May God give him peace and provide you strength! You are in my prayers...

Your friend,

Jack Randle

January 18, 2011

To the Van De Kinder family. Our sincere condolence for your loss of Van. We were good friends and business associates in the RCMP Van Sub/Div GIS. He will be missed by all who knew him. Jack (SCU)

January 18, 2011

While we cannot be with you on the 19th, our thoughts and prayers will be. We will truly miss this marvellous man who has so greatly influenced our lives. Sandy, you have been blessed to be part of his life and we know he felt the same way about you - love you

Thom and David

Jim & Carmen Treffrey/Haller

January 17, 2011

Sandy please take comfort in knowing that you were blessed to have some memorable years with a wonderful man. We were looking forward to our annual New years visit. It was a great shock to hear that he had passed away. We loved Van's sense of humour and the twinkle in his eye when he related a story. Jim always remembers the wonderful time he had when he crewed for Captain Van in the IYC yacht races. Van may have been soft spoken but he had a very competitive streak when it came to racing.
Hugs, Carmen & Jim

teresa ziebin

January 15, 2011

I'm sorry to hear of Van's passing I will always remember the sailing trips. My condolences

Marg Schumacher

January 14, 2011

I was shocked and saddened by the sudden passing of one of my favorite judges in conformation and obedience. He was always so kind and patient with both dogs and handlers... whenever I could, I made sure to enter the classes with my Cocker Spaniels when he was judging. Win or lose, I always felt that my dog had received a respectful and knowledgeable comparison to the standard and the competitors! It's been years since I have been in the show ring, and it is indeed sad to see so many great ones of the dog fancy pass on to further adventures. My sincere condolences to his wife and family....we have all lost a special person!

Shannon Thomas

January 13, 2011

Hi Sandy,

Our thoughts are with you during this difficult time. Dave and I have attended many of Van's training classes with our beloved German Shepherds. He was always so patient with us as we worked through our issues (too many to describe). We learned so much from him and you. No doubt we're better dog owners and trainers because of it. He'll be missed and we hope when you're ready you'll return to training and share your amazing knowledge with all of us too.

Shannon and Dave Thomas

Jennifer Remazki

January 13, 2011

We wish to extend our deepest condolences to you, Sandy and your family. I had the opportunity to exhibit my dogs under Judge van de Kinder on many occasions and always felt that I was in the presence of a true dog person; he was a man with an eye, the knowledge and the care. He awarded me and my boy a Best in Show - a day I will never forget. And I will never forget his words to me that day, delivered with a quiet wisdom that I will always admire. Your family has lost a loved one; the dog world has lost a man of great influence. He will be missed.

Maureen Andersen

January 12, 2011

Merlin was on our first judging panel here in Dryden, Ontario almost 30 years ago. We asked him back several times and were always impressed with his judging in both conformation & obedience. He was a gentleman in every way, He shall be missed by all of us who knew him and shared the common bond
and love of dogs. Maureen Andersen