Longtime Vernon councillor, champion of the city and radio personality Patrick Nicol has died. He was 64.
The City of Vernon announced Nicol's death in a news release Thursday afternoon. He died of cancer.
"His length of service on council was amongst the longest of any councillor in our province," said Mayor Rob Sawatzky in the release. "His dedication to his community was a foundation of his life and work.
"We will all greatly miss his wisdom and kindness, as well as his efforts to make his community a better place. He acted with dignity and respect for others, and we, the members of his family at the City of Vernon, extend our condolences to his family and friends."
Nicol had a 42-year radio career. He was vice-president and general manager from 1987 to 2010 and program director from 1977 to 1986 at Kiss FM in Vernon.
Radio personality Jen Bailey credits Nicol with launching her career.
"He put a 16-year-old kid on the radio and gave me my own show," said Bailey, who was hired by Nicol six years ago.
"Not a lot of people would have done that. He always wanted to give people an opportunity."
Bailey remembers Nicol as taking a vested interest in local youth from the Kiss FM events crew to a variety of organizations that involve young people.
She said he was proud to be part of the Our Kids Have Talent competition.
Nicol was involved in numerous other community events and could be found every Canada Day in Polson Park, microphone in hand, acting as MC for the annual celebration.
He also gave his time to the Canadian Cancer Society and a number of other charities, winning several awards for his community-related efforts, including Vernon Distinguished Citizen in 2006.
He was married with two children.
In the past year, Nicol found himself involved in a couple of controversies. He responded to a $2,000 fine for failing to pay income taxes on time by taking out a newspaper ad blasting the Canada Revenue Agency for its "secret and arbitrary manner, such actions being capable of ruining the personal and financial lives and reputations of Canadians."
As well, comments he made in a radio interview caused a judge to delay sentencing in a tainted-water case. Nicol said afterward he had meant no disrespect. The case was resolved on Wednesday.