In Memoriam: Paul Monaghan

The PGA of BC regrets to share that longtime professional Paul Monaghan passed away on March 3. He was 61.

After a 2-year battle with cancer, Monaghan passed away peacefully in his sleep at home surrounded by his family. Monaghan leaves behind his wife of 32 years Debora, son Robert, stepchildren TJ Thompson and Holly Thompson-Nesbitt, and the light of his life his grandson Willy. 

Monaghan was born and raised in Georgetown, Ontario, moving to BC in 1992. Playing as a junior member at the Devils Pulpit in Caledon, Ontario, he developed a deep love for golf and once in BC made the decision to make golf his lifelong career. Monaghan entered the CPGA apprenticeship program in 1994 while working at Summerland Golf and Country Club and earned his Class A certification in 1997. 

He loved teaching and developing all levels and ages of golfers but took a keen interest in teaching and mentoring juniors. He took great pride in building custom fit golf clubs and honing his skills on the course whenever he had the chance.

Monaghan’s stepdaughter Holly Thompson-Nesbitt wrote about his passions and enduring personality in a eulogy:

“Paul was the architect of countless adventures. Memories with Paul read like an adventure novel - camping escapades, boat rides resonating with waves of laughter, daring cliff-jumping feats, exhilarating snowmobiling adventures and leisurely days exploring the great outdoors. Always coming home with a story in hand!

Paul had an uncanny ability to turn the ordinary into the extraordinary. Late night orchard fruit heists transformed into legendary family stories and backyard hangs became cherished moments of togetherness.

His hands were not just skilled at building golf clubs but also at fixing vehicles. They were the creator of countless memories, the tools that built the foundation of our family bonds. Paul was practical yet thoughtful in nature and introduced a charmingly quirky tradition. Come Christmas we could all reliably expect to receive engine oil or windshield washer fluid as gifts. Practicality was his forte!

Paul extended his passion for golf beyond our family circle. He found immense joy in teaching juniors, embarked on golf trips with his buddies and playfully ribbed his golf mates on proper golf etiquette. His commitment to the sport went even further; he transformed his passion into a career, eventually crafting a golf shop on his property - proof of the deep connection he had with the game.

As we say goodbye to Paul, we remember not the illness that took him from us way too soon but instead the love for his family, the love for his new grandson Willy, the echoes of his laughter and the enduring legacy of a man who made every family moment count. His spirit will live on in the quiet corners or our homes and the shared glances across the room.

Husband, father, stepfather, grandfather, son, brother, uncle, friend and the quintessential neighbour you wish you had. Rest in Peace Paul.”

A celebration of Monaghan’s life will be held at the Summerland Golf and Country Club on Saturday, May 11 from 1:30-4:30 to celebrate and laugh at the memories he bestowed upon his friends and family.

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