GRANDE PRAIRIE, Alta. — The Canadian hotel industry has lost one of its legendary entrepreneurs. William Robert Pomeroy, also known to friends and family as Bob, passed away on June 11, 2020, at the age of 72 years.
Bob will forever be remembered for his passion, tenacity, and living the entrepreneurial dream; and for Bob, no dream was too big. Bob was a known trailblazer in the hospitality industry and, over the years, built a legacy that will continue to live on in his name, his obituary said.
To say Bob was larger than life is an understatement. His presence filled a room, and people from all walks of life were naturally drawn to him. The impact he has made here on earth to his many friends and family is simply immeasurable, and we are left with countless special memories and moments that we will cherish for a lifetime. Throughout his extraordinary life and his many different ventures, but his greatest accomplishment was always his family.
Bob began his career in 1983, as manager of the Holiday Inn in Fort St. John. In 1994, he bought his first hotel in Grande Prairie — the Igloo Inn.
“Seeing a great opportunity to differentiate himself in the industry, he pioneered the first continental breakfast and sharing of market intelligence with his competitors,” reads the program for the 2018 Western Canadian Lodging Conference.
By 2006, the company had rooted itself with headquarters and an extended stay hotel in Grande Prairie.
Bob appointed his son Ryan as president of the company to oversee operations while he handled the buying, selling, and building of properties. The two focused the company’s growth in the oil and gas markets in northeast B.C. and northwest Alberta, and revived the Pomeroy Hotel brand in Fort St. John in 2008.
Today, the company has a portfolio of some 2,500 rooms with 24 properties throughout the B.C. and Alberta Peace, as well as destination hotels in Alaska and Kananaskis. Pomeroy won a number of industry awards as a developer and operator.
Bob will be lovingly be remembered by his children, Kim (Rod) Gravengard, Ryan (Allison) Pomeroy, Connor (Jessica) Pomeroy, partner Teela King, her son Daxton King and their daughter Kingsley Rose Pomeroy. Bob will also be fondly remembered by his eight Grandchildren, Jennifer, Kory, Mallory, Hayley, Kaden, Zachary, Joshua, and Levi. And by his great-grandchildren Ellie, Ashlynn, Kayle, and Kjell as well as his sisters Judy (Tony) Kramer and Joan (Brian) Scheck. Along with his many nieces and nephews.
Bob is predeceased by his sister Marie Ryder, son Tim Pomeroy, father Ross (Scotty) Pomeroy, and his mother, Martha (Mandy) Pomeroy.
Due to restrictions from COVID, the family is not able to host a formal funeral at this time. However, a special website www.RememberingBobPomeroy.com has been created as a place to share stories, pictures, and videos of Bob.
A viewing was held Friday, June 19, 2020, at 7:00 pm – 9:00 pm at Bear Creek Funeral Home (11802 99 Avenue in Grande Prairie, Alberta). A Celebration of life for Bob will be held on Saturday, June 20, 2020 at 2:00 pm at the Peoples Church (11850-108 Street Grande Prairie, Alberta). As the church is now at capacity, Bob’s family welcome you to the live streaming event at the Pomeroy Hotels located in Grande Prairie, AB as well as Fort St. John, BC. Live streaming will be available on the Bear Creek Funeral Home YouTube Page
Those who so desire may make a memorial donation in memory of Bob can make one to the Stollery charitable foundation. Details will be provided on the site and on the memorial cards.