On the morning of July 29, 2022, Desmond (Des) Williamson went home to be with his Savior Jesus at the age of 57 years.  He passed away peacefully after a battle with cancer.

Des will always be cherished by his wife of 30+ years, Carolyn and their two daughters: Ashley Williamson and Kaitlyn (Timothy) Guenter.  Des is survived by his mother Elizabeth and siblings: Trevor (Lynn), Ron (Linda), Audrey (Blaine) and Linda Wilson, as well as nieces and nephews. He was predeceased by his father Robert Williamson, and sister-in-law Linda.

Des was born on March 15, 1965 in Belfast, Northern Ireland, the youngest of five children.  He spent the first fourteen years of his life in Northern Ireland, moving to Edmonton, AB with his family on March 17, 1979. Des finished his Jr. High year at Westmount Jr. High, and attended Ross Sheppard High School for his high school years. After graduating high school, he attended the University of Alberta Engineering program, completing a BSc. in Civil Engineering in April 1987, then moving on to complete his Masters Degree in October 1989. 

In July 1989, Des joined the bridge engineering group with Alberta Transportation. After a brief time away working in the engineering consulting world, he rejoined Alberta Transportation in January 1997. He worked his way up through several positions, becoming a Director in 2011, then an Executive Director in 2017 where he remained until his retirement in May 2022. 

Des loved his family and friends, and was always willing to lend a helping hand. He loved working with different technology and did some programming throughout the years. Presented with a problem, he would not give up until an acceptable solution was found. Des enjoyed camping and biking on mountain trails, and was looking forward to doing more biking before his health declined.  He also enjoyed exploring coasts and bodies of water, though did not make a good fishing partner as he spent most of his time finding rocks that he could then skip along the water. He was a huge James Bond fan as one of the Bond films was the first movie he saw on the big screen, and could list off trivia about theme songs, actors and more. His “dad” jokes, and dry sense of humor brought many groans and laughs from his family, friends, and co-workers.  He took his leadership responsibilities seriously, intentionally investing lots of time in developing his leadership skills.  He developed a leadership style of quietly leading by example and was respected for the time that he invested into people. Des was always willing to help people learn, whether by mentoring co-workers, tutoring upcoming engineering students, or helping his daughters with their math and physics homework.   

Des had an unwavering strong faith in the Lord, and truly knew his identity in Christ.  He always said that it was Christ who had done the heavy work on the cross for his salvation, not anything he had done.  

There will be an open house for him August 28, 2022 from 1-4pm to be able to share with each other Des’ memory. Please message family for details. For those who wish, donations can be made in memory to Beulah Alliance Church-Missions, or to a charity of your choice.


  1. Shelagh and Ray

    Carolyn and family
    We are sad to hear of the passing
    of your husband, father, brother and friend. Des was a wonderful man who loved Jesus. We continue to ask God for peace and comfort. Love Ray and Shelagh Synchyshyn.

  2. Lois Fullerton

    Uncle Des will always be remembered fondly as a very intelligent, witty and lovely man. I’m so glad Uncle Des, Aunt Carolyn and Ashley were able to come over to NI for our wedding in 2019 and to see where Uncle Des was born and where his biggest bro still resides. Special memories from then. I know each and every Williamson will carry Uncle Des in our hearts as we know he is with his Maker and we will all be united with him and Grandpa Roy in glory. Thinking of Aunt Carolyn, Ashley and Kaitlyn during these times ahead and praying for your hearts. With love and hugs from NI, Lois & Aaron Fullerton

  3. Michelle Geddes

    Our sad condolences to you Carolyn, Ashley and Kaitlyn and to your whole family – Des touched many people in his life and I know he will be dearly missed. Our thoughts are with you. Michelle, Keith, Naomi and Julia

  4. Gary&Evelyn Davidson

    So sorry for your family’s loss may all his memories stay close to your heart and bring you peace and calm .

  5. Keith and Jacquie Taylor

    Carolyn, Ashley and Kaitlyn, we are so sorry for your loss. We trust that you will experience God’s watchful care through these days. Grace and peace to you!

  6. Doug Hersom

    I have nothing but fond memories of Des. I still laugh at his dry sense of humour and playing hockey on the same line as him was a trip. You always knew what he was and he never wavered in his love of Jesus. I’m so glad that I’ll get to hang with him in heaven. May God grant you, Carolyn, Ashley and Kaitlyn his blessing and peace. He was a great guy.

  7. Crystal Wilson

    Beautiful synapses of an amazing life – I would have never imagined Uncle Des not being there. He was always so full of life. Glad we shared laughs so many fantastic times and wonderful moments in so many ways that I will never forget. I love you Uncle

  8. Laurie and Terry Rosenau

    We pray you will sense God’s presence and loving care as you endure the loss of Des, a wonderful husband and father. Carolyn, Ashley and Kaitlyn we will be praying for you. We are very for your loss.

  9. Ed and Betty Giesbrecht

    Carolyn, Ashley and Kaitlyn we are very sorry to hear of the loss of your husband and father. We are praying that you will find God’s comfort and peace during this very difficult time.

  10. Gary & Cathy Fitzgerald

    Carolyn and the Williamson family, We were so saddened by the news about the loss of Dez. Our prayers go out to you.

  11. Amber and Murray Blakely

    Carolyn…. Although we did not know Desmond, our heartfelt sympathy goes to you and your family. You are such a loving caring person, who will get through this with your strong faith. God bless. Amber and Murray Blakely

  12. Roxanne & Al Greene

    We are so sorry for your loss Carolyn, Ashley and Kaitlyn. You are in our thoughts and prayers.
    Roxanne & Al Greene

  13. Kevin and Judi Cantelon

    We are so sorry to hear of your loss.
    We got to know Desmond well at our church’s youth group in the 70s and 80s.
    He told us about this new Irish band named U2 and was a whiz at the Rubik’s cube.
    Kevin and Judi

  14. Judy Jeske

    My heartfelt sympathy of love and prayers are with you Carolyn, Ashley, and Kaitlyn. May the wonderful memories you have shared together and the comfort from your Heavenly Father bring much comfort to each of you. 💗 Judy Jeske

  15. Beverley J Greenhalgh

    Carolyn, Ashley and Kaitlyn: Our heart reach out to you with our deepest sympathy in the loss of your precious husband and father. We know that he is now free from pain and suffering but you are missing him and dealing with the pain and sorrow of your loss. May God continue to uphold you and give you His peace as you travel this grief journey. Our thoughts and prayers are with you. With love, Art and Jeanette

  16. Frank Rizzardo

    Saddened to of heard of Des’s passing , he was a good person to work with at AT , prayers for you and your family during this time

  17. Jeff Zhang

    Des was very talented, dedicated and resourceful. May the happy memories endure.


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