Daniel Ralph Reist

September 12th, 2023

Daniel Reist, born in Kamloops, British Columbia on July 29th, 1954, passed away on the morning of September 12th, 2023.

Dan was born to James and Ruth Reist and was raised in Barriere, BC.  He is survived by his wife, Debbie, his children, Ben, Bob, Jon (Tash), Justin, Nathan (Terra), Adam (Elise), and Chelsea (Danny), his grandchildren, Eli, Lucas, Matteo, Maëlle, Jane, and Finnley, and his siblings, Dennis, John (Wendy), Esther (Lloyd), Russell, Larry (Lisa), and Eric (Kelly).  Also of great importance to Dan were his many nieces, nephews, friends and colleagues.

The impact of Dan’s words and actions have been significant to so many and his counsel has reached the ears of individuals from all walks of life.  He had an incredible capacity for rational thought and while he had an answer to many of our questions, he’d sooner opt for a dialogue that led only to greater and more interesting questions, occasionally to our great frustration.  Dan’s ability to empower others to think for themselves and discover their own agency was an incredible gift.  He was not a preacher in the traditional sense; his sermons were not mere didactic expositions, but invitations to understand our relationship to God in the context of our own communities…humanity-centered calls to action.  He truly was a man who lived his faith.

Dan’s contributions to his community and to the field of substance abuse research have been myriad.  From facilitating critical discourse among health policy makers and educators alike, to supporting local youth sports and arts programming, Dan has exemplified what it means to be an active, generous, and authentically virtuous human being.  He will be remembered for not only his compassionate and intellectual approach to problem-solving, but also his unwavering commitment to being the ever-wise, uncompromising goofball he was to his grandchildren.  Dan had a sense of humour that was simultaneously silly and acutely philosophical.  He had a propensity for analyzing language and would revel in sharing the contemplative writings of authors like Lewis Carroll and A.A. Milne to any that would listen at the dinner table, a cause that his children continue to champion.

Whether from his role as dedicated husband, father, grandfather, brother, friend, pastor, or counselor, Dan will be dearly missed by all who had the great fortune to have known him.  

A celebration of life for Dan will be held in Mission on Sunday, November 12th, 2023. For those wishing to attend, please contact Dan’s daughter, Chelsea, at danreistcelebrationoflife@gmail.com for further service details and to RSVP.


Debbie & Family, We only just heard of your loss. We recall Dan from our Northwest days in the '70s as a kind, compassionate and deeply thoughtful person. He carried that through the journey of his life and it was the mark he left in the lives of so many. We trust that God's powerful, healing, comfort will be yours. You're in our hearts and prayers, Brian & Rita Rapske

Hi Debbie. I'm shocked to hear Dan is Home so early. I still have your sewing machine. I'm praying for you this evening. God keep you all safe.

Dan was a great guy. I am thinking of you all at this time. Condolences

Debbie, I just learned about Dan's passing. I am so sorry for your loss. I remember the many meals I had in your home when we attended Northwest together and I still reflect on some of the theological discussions Dan and I had. Praying for comfort for you and your family during this difficult time.

Through the lens of wife, children, grandchildren and extended family, I expect an intimate and personal perception of Dan. From those who have a professional relationship, I expect another. From an outsider and colleague'al grandfather, there was a "je ne sais quoi" that set Dan into a a new orbit and a special category. Less we forget that as much as Dan was a powerful and influential force, Deb completed him. Let us never lose sight of the woman behind the man. Sincerest love and condolences to you Deb and family. Big hugs.

Dear Debbie: My deepest sympathy to you and your family. May God be with you and comfort you. Psalm 23:4, Nahum 1:7. Louise Neufeldt

Knowing Dan's depth of questioning and articulation at seminary, church and on the mission field was matched by his compassionate and gracious friendship through many nights of games and outreach. Depth describes his heart and mind and we cherish the memories. With you through these valleys of shadows.

Debbie, I am so sorry for your loss. My prayers are with you and your family.

I had the great pleasure of working along side Dan's profoundly insightful influence with Healthy Minds - Healthy Campuses. His broad understanding of complex mental health and addiction culture was pivotal in shaping my conceptualization of post-secondary student mental health. His unique educational style, methods of engagement and capacity to capture the curiosity of his audience and empower them to participate in meaningful progressive change was unsurpassed in his field. A truly remarkably gifted human being. I am so grateful to have learned in his presence

Debbie I am so sorry for your loss. My prayers are with you and your family.

I just learned yesterday about Dan's passing, and I'm deeply saddened by this news, although I knew about his illness and have communicated with Debbie several times. My heart goes out to all of you. You are so precious to me and I send my love to each one of you. Hugs!

I never met Dan, but I grew up with Debbie. I am so deeply sorry for your loss Debbie. My prayers are with you and your family.

Having attended seminary with Dan and later having him as my pastor, he was not just another friend but a significant friend, known for his constant wisdom and grace even in diversity. We will all miss you, Dan.

I met Dan as a fresh-faced nursing student searching for research opportunities. I cold-emailed half of Vancouver and Dan was the only one that took me seriously and brought me in for an interview. Looking back, I can't imagine what I would have said to warrant the opportunity he gave me, which began a 5-year tenure at CARBC/CISUR. As a nurse (who worked in acute substance use wards prior), my job with Dan was a chance to understand the world I trained in. I would look forward to the times we would sit in his office, him ruminating over a new translation of Martin Buber or a passage from David Bohm on dialogue, trying to make sense of the world. Many people in his professional world would often tell us how incredible it was to hear him speak. I agree. Dan taught me to be curious and question the world around me, to encourage different opinions, and to truly listen to each other —lessons that are possibly more important today. The curiosity and conversation at CISUR encouraged me to pursue a PhD and academia. I think about him often and hold many of the lessons with me as I move forward in my life. He will be so missed. All my deepest condolences to the family, during what I can't imagine, is the most difficult time.

My heart goes out to Deb and family. I was very saddened by the loss of Dan's Light in this world. I had the great honour of working with him and he was the best of men in every respect.

So grateful to have our lives on Third touched by Dan. My heart is with the family and especially Debbie. Dan was an extraordinary human being whose life was an example of good and light to us all.

Dear Debbie and Reist Family, I am so sorry to hear to Dan’s passing. I pray that the memories you all have will help to ease your loss and help to comfort you at this time. Dan was a wonderful person he will be sadly missed. May he RIP, my thoughts and prays are with you all at this time. Tracey

I will always remember Dan for his calming presence and his way of listening. He taught me how to drive and I am grateful, as I have no trouble parallel parking. My thoughts and prays are with you all.

Sending lots of love to Reist family. Take care of yourselves and one another. My thoughts are with you. Big hugs.

I knew both Dan & Deb way back in the early '70's, and considered them 2 of my best friends. I still do, even if I haven't seen them in many years. I am SO sorry about Danny, as I knew him back then. He will be a BIG miss. Love & prayers to all

Dear Debbie I am so deeply saddened by the news of your loss. Oh how I pray that the loving memories that you hold in your heart ease your loss and bring you comfort as you face the days ahead. Praying that God will bless and comfort you and your family during this difficult time. All my Love and Deepest Sympathy Judi Warkentin

Dan was quite simply the exemplar as dad, granddad, partner, community worker and enlightened human for others to emulate. So grateful to have been touched by such a gorgeous soul through the beauty of his precious wife and brilliant children. May his influence endure. Sincerest condolences to every member of his loving family. Although he blessed us all he is nonetheless gone too soon.

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