The Ganaraska Hiking Trail Association Inc. mourns the passing of one of its most active and dedicated trail volunteers. Peter Verbeek was the long time trail director for the Ganaraska Hiking Trail (also the secretary for some years) and a real connaisseur of the Ganaraska Hiking Trail, and especially of the Wilderness Section in the Queen Elizabeth II Wildlands. We are very thankful for his many contributions and for introducing so many people to the joys of hiking.
May he rest in peace.
Last fall, at the 50th Anniversary celebrations of the Ganaraska Hiking Trail, we also recognized Peter for his many contributions to the Ganaraska Hiking Trail.
President, Ganaraska Hiking Trail Inc.
JULY 6, 1930 � APRIL 17, 2019
Peter Verbeek (Petrus Bernardus Joannes Verbeek) With heavy hearts we announce the passing of Peter Verbeek on Wednesday April 17, 2019 at the age of 88. Born in Holland on July 6, 1930, he arrived in Canada on March 18, 1955 to begin a new adventure. His travels took him from Prince Edward Island, to Hamilton and then Toronto where he met and married Wyn. They settled in Scarborough, where they raised their family. Peter studied and became a Fellow of the Institute of Canadian Bankers and graduated from York University with a Bachelor of Arts degree. His love of the outdoors led him to many canoeing and hiking adventures. Predeceased by his beloved wife Winifred (Thomson) of 53 years, dear father of Sandra Lebrun (Yannick) and Lisa Caster (Murray) and proud grandfather of Alex, Chelsea (Jake), Kaeli (Jon) and Andrew (Kara). Beloved son of the late Petrus and Maria Verbeek of the Netherlands, Brother of the late Elizabeth �Bep� Keijer-Ferguson (Gerard & Danny), Theodora �Thea� Van Der Heiden (Antonius), and Bernardus and survived by sisters Alida �Lia� van Houdt (Henk), and Bernarda �Bernie� Fens (Leo). He is survived by many cousins, nephews and nieces around the world. Peter was a proud 35 year employee/retiree of CIBC, previous member of the East York Outing Club, Ganaraska Trail Association, Ambassador of the Wilderness Trail, Wilderness Canoe Association, Bruce Trail Hiking Club and long term volunteer at Scarborough Hospital. This is the pearl at the end of the string, enjoy!
*** Words from Robert Campbell ***
I’m sad to hear about the passing of Peter Verbeek. Leader, Founder, Hiker, Friend, Father Figure.
I Remember back to my first Wilderness Crossover, which was the first one led as a group. Wayback in the early 90’s. The ferns were as high as my shoulders in places. We all followed Peter with a sense of security. The trail was marked but there was no trail under foot. At times Peter would have to point us in the right direction, even taking his compass out at times. We continued over the weekend towards Victoria Bridge making our way over the many beaver dams, most of which had no easy way across at this point. We all made it out with a sense of accomplishment, even the two at Loon Lake taken out by helicopter.
Over the years to follow, I continued to hike the Wilderness Section with Peter. I came to appreciate the area more and more and I could see what he seen and loved. I believe the trail wouldn’t have came to its present day glory without Peter there at the beginning. Thank you.
Rest in peace
Robert Campbell Co-President GHTA Wilderness