Brian A. Kirkwood 
'El Guapo'

After a courageous three-year battle with cancer, in his 63rd year, Brian passed away peacefully at home on August 31, 2005, with his loving wife and family by his side.
Beloved husband of Liz, proud father of Peter, Katie, Justin, Kevin and his wife Jody, along with step children Jenn, Tim and Christopher Wray Auger; brother of David, and grandfather to Olivia, Garret and Gabrielle, he will also be sadly missed by his aunts Nancy and Glo, and his cousins and friends. 

Brian had a full, adventurous and exciting life, leaving his mark on the music and beverage alcohol industries, spending many years as a professional musician and member of the bands 'Magic Bubble' and 'Seadog', producing 36 recordings, including two albums. 

He learned his skills in sales and senior management while working with the Campbell Soup Company in Alberta, and as Sales Manager, Canned Food Division, in Ontario; as Director of Sales for Brights Wines (now Vincor), managing the sales force and retail store operations; then as National Vice-President, Sales, with Diageo Canada. 
In 1998, he formed his own company, The Kirkwood Group, to sell and market international wines, beers and spirits - the largest of which are yellow tail Wines from Australia, and DAB beer from Germany - throughout Canada. 

The company carries on with a strong management staff and a great portfolio of brands. Brian's sons Peter, Kevin and Tim, are working in the company, while his wife Liz is a director on its Advisory Council. 

Brian was on the Board of Directors of the Canadian Hospitality Foundation and the Ontario Hostelry Institute, organizations dedicated to the education of hospitality students, and he received the Gold Award for his contribution to the industry. He was also on the Advisory Board of Ontario Restaurant News since the magazine's inception in 1988. 

Brian loved photography, capturing hundreds of pictures of old barns. His real passion was taking photos of his family and places he loved to visit, which he kept in numerous albums. He liked to collect coins, western movies and other mementos, displaying them at his home and at his cottage on Stormy Lake in Haliburton, which he truly loved. 

Brian's life has been full and rewarding, and he was comforted by all the love and kindnesses he received from his family, friends, and industry associates. He was a man of boundless curiosity and interest in others. Charming, friendly, gracious, sentimental and well liked by those he worked with and his close friends, he will be missed and fondly remembered. His wish was for us to celebrate life and not mourn his passing.

In lieu of flowers, the family would appreciate a donation in Brian's memory to Cancer Research at Princess Margaret Hospital, or to a charity of your choice. 

The family sends a personal thank-you to Dr. Jonathan Lapp of Oakville. 

The funeral service will be held at 2:30 p.m. this Saturday, September 3, at the Glen Oaks Memorial Gardens, 3164 9th Line, Oakville, Ontario (905) 257-8822. Reception to follow. 

Visitation is on Friday, September 2, at The Reception Center, Glen Oaks Memorial Gardens, from 2 to 4, and from 7 to 9 p.m.