Below, Photos from the scattering of Ron's ashes on the first anniversary of his death, Sunday, January 9th, 2011


Ron McCanna

It is with great sadness that we announce the sudden passing of Ron McCanna, a tremendous family man, fishing buddy, and Caribou Club member. Ron leaves Patti, his wonderful wife of 30+ years, his children Dennis, Ryan, & Cati, his grandchildren Lindsay, Dillon, Peyton, Connor, & Evan, his sisters Sheila, Karen, Faye, & Patti, his brothers Kevin & Neil, Patti's sisters Pam, Cat & brother Marty, cousin Sharon, and numerous coworkers and friends, who will all miss him deeply.

Services are scheduled for 1 PM, Saturday, January 23, 2010, at
Eternal Valley Memorial Park, Newhall CA

The Caribou Club website you are looking at started about a year ago. Think of it as a brotherhood of Old Farts gathered from the San Fernando Valley. We are somewhat organized in that we have embroidered hats, shirts etc. Ron is one of our original Caribou and will always stand out as a defining member.

Arch Rock, Anacapa Island 

When Patti & Ronnie met, it was like magic. They met in a bar parking lot (of all places) but the attraction was immediate. I don't think either one of them knew at the time what they were feeling. Turns out is was the love of a lifetime. While they definitely had their own thoughts and feelings, they were almost always on the same page. They shared such a love of life and for each other and it was obvious to anyone who knew them. And throughout the years they always had the utmost respect for each other as well as the trust and passion that most people only dream of having. the most important role to him was to take care of his wife and family, which he did every single day of his life. And it breaks my heart that their time together was cut short. Ronnie was a great human being and had such a gift of compassion and forgiveness. In closing I must say that the one gift Ronnie has left us with is knowing he cherished every moment of his life as if he some how knew he would have to leave us all too soon. Although having to say goodbye will be unbearable, it's truly a comfort to know his memory will live on in his wonderful children and beautiful grandchildren. He may be gone but he most certainly will never be forgotten.

Pam Bailey

Sister in Law

Summer 2009 Ventura Harbor Ca
    Ron and I were bar hopping at the Ventura Harbor one night, we were walking back to Terry's boat after having some drinks at the bars. As we were walking a revelation came to me.  "Ron I want you to Know that you have been one hellava good friend!"  Ron reciprocated, we shook hands, patted each other on the back and then hugged. I believe that was an extraordinary moment for both of us.
    Back on board Terry's boat we popped open some beers and toasted thirty seven years of friendship and our adventures together.
    Spring 2008 Piru Creek
    Ron my dog and I were the only ones taking this hike.  It was overcast and cool when we set out on our hike down Piru creek.  We hiked down river a few miles, set up camp, ate and made a few mixed drinks, slept very well except when my dog tried to crawl into the sleeping bag.
    The next day we broke camp and hiked several miles until Ron slipped and fell down, he said that he hurt his hand when he fell, so we made camp.
    After eating lunch we decided to walk down Piru creek just to fish. Ron complained that his hand was really hurting and by the looks of the swelling I think he fractured some finger sockets, but he still wanted to fish.
    We looked at my cell phone and it said 12:00, so we figured we had plenty of time to fish.
Ron my down and I hiked down stream to another stream called fish creek.  We did catch some nice trout along the way. When we arrived at fish creek we realized it was very late in the day, and we had not brought any supplies with us. We turned and headed back up stream hiking as fast as we could, it started getting really late and my dog was having a lot of trouble keeping up with us.  I told Ron to go ahead and get back to camp asap.  I had to help my dog he was having a hard time negotiating the return trip. His paws were really sore and bleeding.
    It finally was too dark to see to hike, I found a sandy beach, dug a burrow.  The dog and I spent the night in the burrow, of course it rained that night. I half expected Ron to come looking for me and half expected him not to.  It is treacherous hiking during the daylight hours let along at night with a flashlight. I actually got some sleep with the dog on top of my legs to help keep me warm.
    Morning came, I got up, stiff, shaking from the cold and hurting from sleeping on the hard ground. It took a half hour before I could start walking.  The dog and I hiked back to camp, we were only fifteen minutes away from camp.
    Ron was up and was getting ready to come look for me.  It did not bother me that he had not come looking for me that night.  What bothered me was his bed, it consisted of his inflatable pad and sleeping bag and my inflatable pad and sleeping bag.
    Ron you can use my inflatable pad and sleeping bag whenever and wherever you lay your body to rest. I love you, Ron.
Gary McKay


Above photo shoot 1970

From left to right: Al White - Ron - Kevin McCanna - Jim Rusch - Gary McKay

 Gary playing with Dolphin

Lindsay is supposed to be hiding Ron's beer, but obviously she' s too busy on getting her smile right!

The Grandfather 

Terry - Ron - Gary swimming off Santa Cruz Island 

More than anyone I’ve ever known, Ron loved family, friends and life in that order. He put his wife and children first; above all he cherished that priority. Second to all this, he put his love for nature, taking ridiculously long hikes with his lifelong friend Gary McKay along Piru Creek, hiking miles and miles in the Canyon where no civilized man has ever stepped before. Later, as he became more sensible and realized that hiking basically sucked, he found that it was easier to just store a thirty pack of Bud on the boat rather than haul it around the mountainside. I remember our first adventure on the boat when we first brought it up from Long Beach. Ron, his son Ryan and about 5 others including myself left early Saturday morning to travel up the coast to Ventura. We told family and friends we’d be arriving around 5 that afternoon. We failed to tell anyone that we had decided to go over to the Channel Islands first; arriving on the back side of Anacapa that night, where of course cell phones didn't work.  That whole trip was an adventure in itself, but somehow we made it back safely. I distinctly remember Ron’s smile  from ear to ear on that trip. He knew full well that this was going to be one of many trips yet to come. On that trip and from then on, Ron became the boat's official cook and "Galley Bitch". With the many weekends on the boat, whether tied up at the slip or out on the ocean, Ron’s love of the water and surrounding nature was always evident. Time after time we’d be out, whether just staring at the blue sea or attempting to count the thousands of Dolphin surrounding the boat, Ron would just say "Awesome!" One weekend he said that word so many times we all got pissed at him and said find another expression, and with that never ending smile, he said “Awesome, Just Fucking Awesome.”  No doubt he’s walking around heaven right now repeating that very phrase, well maybe not the complete phrase.

Terry Coultas


Rumor has it that Ron was fishing on his boat on Lake Casitas when he came upon another fisherman who had just run out of gas. He asked Ron for help, so Ron gave him some gas and asked for nothing in return. When the guy insisted he give him something, Ron said, "OK I'll take your cap." Hence the reason Ron has this gay looking cap.

My name is Sharon Grechowsky and I am Patti's cousin.  Growing up Patti and her siblings weren't my cousins, they were my sisters and brother.  That relationship has continued to this day.   What a wonderful addition to our family Ronnie was.  He didn't say much the first few years in the family, but that sure changed over the years!  Ron McCanna was truly one of the most wonderful men I have ever known.  He never was without a smile on his face and had such a love of life.  He loved the finer things, such as cruises, going to dinner with friends, etc, but his greatest enjoyment was the simple things, whether it was sitting outside in the morning reading his newspapaer and drinking coffee, playing with his grand kids, or being the YaYa lifeguard!  One time Patti, Cathy and myself decided we should drink Cosmos out of glass martini glasses in the pool and try syncronized swimming at the same time!  Ron was sure one of us was going to drown, so he sat there reading a book, but keeping one eye on us at all times.  He would laugh so hard, because we never spilled a sip of our drinks and our syncronized swimming was really something to behold!  When we started doing YaYas Ron just could not get it through his head it was for the girls only.  He would show up at the restaurant, or when we did dinner at Patti's would plop right down at the dinner table with us.  Of course we couldn't very well make him leave, since he usually did the some of cooking when we were there.  Ron did something very special for me when my dog Patches died and it goes to show he would go beyond the call for friends or family.  Patches died in my car on the way to the dog hospital, I was hysterical and called Cathy since I was close to her house.  She immediately called Patti and Pam and they came to say goodbye to Patches, Ron came along.  I was at a loss so Ron said he would take Patches to the shelter and they would take care of him.  It was the year the road to Castaic shelter washed out and you had to go through Pitches Honor Ranch to get there.  By the time he got there the shelter was closed. He knew he couldn't bring Patches back with him, so he went to a hardware store, bought a shovel and went up to Castaic Lake and buried my dog.  It was an amazing thing and when I mentioned it he just smiled and said thats what family does.  I think Ron has taught us all lessons in how to truly enjoy every day, and I will miss him.  God Bless Patti, Dennis, Cati, & Ryan.  I love all of you.


I had the pleasure of working with Ron for several years in Newhall.  During those years there was one thing I could count on every day; Ron having a smile on his face and a cheerful "Good Morning" for everyone.  Anybody that had the pleasure of working with Ron knows what a helpful, talented, great guy he was.  If you were fortunate enough to know him outside of work, I am sure you were impressed as much as I was how much Ron loved his wife and family, and how he loved to live life to the fullest.   I am fortunate to be able to say was he was my friend and he will remain in my memory always.   He will be missed greatly by all that knew him.   My heart goes out to his family for their loss of a wonderful man.   

Kellie Guthrie

I’ve known Ron since he started work at SDI as a machinist in the early 80’s as I remember.  We we’re both starting out and a just little younger then.  Ron is above all else a stand up guy! The term “stand up guy” may be out of phase with some but we all know it stands for thousands of positive character traits and actions!  Unfortunately our relationship was mostly through work, but Ron would tell me the stories of hiking, fishing and later of “the boat”. At the old SDI location we had a small pond that somehow was stocked with Bass and small Crappie so we would fish from shore once in a while (Ron more than I) without much as I remember Ron made a raft and I use the term raft loosely.  So we would paddle out on this raft that was at best a 4x8 sheet of plywood with a box for a seat and maybe not enough flotation for the both of us and we actually caught some damn fish!  The raft was of course upgraded over time and I think it wound up with trolling motor some astro turf and an ice chest, no more flotation just the important things.

I'll miss you, man!

Mike Cunningham

Special Devices

Ron was the first person (that I didn't know I already knew) that I met when I
first came to SDI in 1987.  He quickly introduced me to lunches at the VFW
which became a survival strategy that, to this day, continues to serve me
well.  Later, we learned that we had some common history through my cousin,Cindy.
Ron was always fun to be around whether it was at work, at lunch, fishing on
Terry's boat, at a Caribou get together or playing poker at his house.  I
always appreciated that he could captain the boat when Terry couldn't.   He
will be missed.

John Lange
Q.A. Mgr.
Networks Electronic Co

     The last time I saw Ron was only a couple of weeks ago, where we spent a beautiful sunny afternoon dockside on Terry's boat, Perfect, at Channel Islands Harbor. Unfortunately, we couldn't see the view because we were inside the engine compartment changing greasy parts. But it didn't matter to Ron whether he was working on an engine, sleeping in cramped quarters, (Imagine that!), cooking meals in the galley, or fishing off Santa Cruz Island, he was happy and content aboard Perfect.
     Every Memorial Day and Labor Day weekend, you would find Ron and his friends Terry, Gary, and Jim, somewhere out in the ocean, fishing, partying, and getting away from land for three days. Not merely the menu planner and chef, Ron was also the chief photographer and computer guru aboard. Some of his photos and videos of dolphins were the best I've ever seen.
     A calm and balanced person, Ron possessed a fantastic sense of humor which we will all miss. But mostly he loved telling stories about his wife, kids, grandkids, dogs, goats, and his home back on dry land in Acton.
     Pat, Thank you so much for loaning Ron to all of us Caribou Club members, especially the boat crew.

Gene Meyer

Ron was so excited to find this, what he thought was a Caribou in Arizona but is actually a Moose, and we hated to tell him otherwise.  

I know that I'll never leave port on your boat again, Terry, that it won' be felt by everyone that Ron is aboard somewhere doing something for all of us. At the same time, his family will always know that loving husband, father, and grandfather will be in spirit with them to love and protect them. Ron will be deeply missed, and no one who had the pleasure of his company will be the same.......GOD BLESS RON AND HIS FAMILY.

Tim Donnelly


   I met Ron (& Patti) McCanna over 15 years ago. Since I host and run karaoke shows, I was first introduced to him most often accompanying his wife, friends and relatives to Karaoke shows where I worked. Ron would applaud and give support to everyone else as they sang the night away. Then one evening Ron decided to sing. I'll never forget the surprise on his friends and family's faces as this tall gentle giant (he's like 6'10") got up on stage and crooned the Elvis classic "Can't help falling in love".  Patti, his wife, told me she didn't even know he sang, never-the-less so well. He brought the house down and it became his "signature song" as he was asked to sing it each time he came in and the dance floor always loaded up then. Ron loved to sing after that and expanded his song repertoire to include many other tunes, like one of his favorites by Alan Jackson, "Midnight in Montgomery".
  I am thankful and blessed for having known Ron and becoming friends with him and Patti. We always had fun at the barbecue's that he loved to have at his house, or going out to dinner with them at our favorite spot in Aqua Dulce. I'll never forget his kindness and help for the many shipments he picked up for me while he was working out in Moorpark.

  And yes, I always felt at ease knowing Ron was on board "The Boat"when any excursions took place. I knew everyone had plenty to eat and drink even if  (& when) they got stranded. Not to mention Ron's "calmness" would keep the boat afloat.
Love and Miss You Ron

Sharon Coultas

To The McCanna family,

It is so difficult, at a time like this, to find the words to express our sorrow about your loss, other than to say we will also miss him enormously.

The Budweiser Corporation of America



We were very shocked to hear of Ron's passing.  We became friends with Ron and Patti through Terry and Sharon Coultas.  Although we left California several years ago, we were back last winter and had the opportunity to enjoy a great dinner at the Coultas' along with Ron and Patti.  Ron spoke with great joy about their children and grandchildren.
Even though we will not be able to be there on Saturday, our thoughts and prayers will be there with you all.
Linda and Ed Lavin

What a sad day to lose another icon of our industry.  Ron was a solid, stand up quality individual always thinking of the other guy and what makes life worth living.  I am sorry I was not able to spend more time experiencing his quality of life.  He will be sadly missed.  My heart goes out to his family and friends for their loss.

Dennis Talle
A fellow energetic fellow

I first met Ron in 1996. I started a small machine shop in Simi Valley and Special Devices was a growing company looking for vendors as they had many needs. Ron was one of the original employees of SDI and used to keep his original torn worn out Badge on his neck as a remembrance. He always felt proud of the work he did at SDI, and from the vendor standpoint, I could not have asked for a better friend / customer relationship. Ron was ethical, Talented, and he always knew what he wanted to do before he approached me to help him process whatever it was from a simple bracket, to a full scale automation machine. His knowledge in the industry, his hard work and dedication, and above all his ability to sacrifice for his friends and family will keep his thoughts and prayers in all the hearts of those who he has met. Ron, we will miss you and God Bless.

Michael Giboney



I didn't know Ron well. I met him at one of the poker parties at Dennis Watson's house. He was a very soft spoken and interesting guy. I liked him better than you right away! He told me about fishing with you, and as I found out later that he was the cook when you guys went on your fishing trips. He really enjoyed your boat. I saw him another time on a Friday when I stopped by to have a beer or three with Gene. Ron had stopped by to get the boat ready for a weekend trip ( he was also much more organized than you, Terry).
I heard from Gene how his time was up. I guess that is the best way to go.
He was a true Caribou and he will be missed.

Jeff Meyer


Above is Patti holding one of their many Grandchildren

Here’s a photo taken by Ron of his granddaughter, Lindsay, chumming in this bucket during a fishing trip. We said at the time, What kind of grandfather would take a picture like this?" Only to embarrass his Granddaughter further, he said with that shit eating grin “Cause she loves me”.

The above picture was from a camping trip with Ron, Ryan, John Holland and I. This is a combination of funny headware, extra shower curtain rings and I'm sure beer was involved some how. I think I'm like'n Ron with the hoops. These antics were what made Ron the fun loving man he was.

Tom Hyson

Special Devices

Above, Ron is holding what he believes is the largest crab ever taken out of Channel Island.

This is probably the only picture in existence where Ron is not holding a beer.

I worked with Ron for the last twelve years at Special Devices. When I first started at SDI Ron invited me to be a part of the engineering lunch time crew when I was lowly supervisor.Lunch became the best part of the work day. There was Ron, Lee, George, Candy, Jeff, Tom, Chuy, Mike and others over the years that joined us for lunch and it was always full of laughs. Ron had a great sense of humor and we joked around all the time.Over the years Ron and I became pretty close, he was like my older brother, I respected his knowledge and I would often seek him out before making decisions. We also fought like brothers but we always made up. I knew if I needed anything I could always talk with Ron. He would give me a different point of view and something else to consider. I could always count on his honesty. That was the Ron I knew, generous, clever, hard working, smart, a great family man and always finding humor in the absurdity of life.

I don’t want to say goodbye to Ron. I’d rather think that he is in Arizona and we’re gonna talk again real soon

I miss you brother.

John Holland

Just a few of Ron's Dolphin 

I met Ron about 11 yrs ago when I started working with him at SDI.  The nicest, soft spoken, intelligent man.  He had so much patience, which he especially needed when working with me.  Ron has taught me so much, and I will miss him tremendously.  I will always remember Ron and everything I learned from him.  There is a huge hole in our lives now that he is gone.  Thank you, Ron, for the knowledge, laughter, patience and pictures.
My heart goes out to his family and other friends.  My thoughts and prayers are with you all.
Liz Myers

 I had the pleasure of meeting Ron when I started working at SDI eight years ago. What a pleasure it was to work with him.  I came to him many times with what I’m sure was a “deer in the headlights” look on my face and he always, always helped me.  I so appreciated his patience and his kindness.  Ron was my favorite kind of person in that he loved his family and spoke of them often.  I still can’t believe he’s gone……he will be greatly missed.

Sarah Wood

Maryann and I are just torn up over Ron. He was such a great guy, and he was the perfect guy to smooth out the rough edges that you and Gary have. We both feel so sorry for your loss of such a good friend. He was definitely one of our favorite people. 

Chris & Maryann

My name is Dee McCanna I married Neil , Ronnie was always nice  to me I will miss him alot. When I married Neil Ron gave me a hug and welcomed me into the family and he danced wtih me at my wedding,I will always remmber his smiling face and kind heart.                        

Dee and Neil McCanna

 In the light of day, you can see them.

Within the darkness of night, you know they're there.

Whether here,there,day or night; their love will always be.