Phillip Bretzloff

Obituary of Phillip David Bretzloff

May 16, 1949 – Aylmer, Quebec

June 27, 2024 – Calgary, Alberta


There is a picture of Phillip ‘Bro’ Bretzloff, cowboy hat on, a big smile on his face and a plan for a Stampede party clearly on his mind. It is but one part of the man who passed away suddenly of heart failure in his home in Calgary, AB, on Thursday, June 27, 2024, at the age of 75 years.


Phillip was a loving father, grandfather, uncle, brother, and a lifelong and loyal friend to many.


His long career as a respected energy lawyer took him to many countries - China, Russia, Myanmar, Africa and Colombia to name just a few, conducting complex negotiations and forming lasting friendships along the way.


He started in Aylmer, QC, 75 years ago, the firstborn of Amelia Bretzloff (nee Smart), a respected high school teacher in the community and Gilbert Bretzloff, public servant, Second World War veteran, artist and farmer.


As Phillip grew up he found a passion for hockey, art, music, hard work and for having a good time with his many cousins. Each summer he worked on the family farm near Bristol, QC, bringing in the hay and corralling the cattle. He often spent time with his paternal grandparents fishing and enjoying life in the forest, developing strong bonds in the German community near Ladysmith, QC.


About having a good time: One day young Phillip was so keen to make it to a barn dance in a nearby community, he hopped in the family tractor and drove … slowly but with determination … and joined the festivities.


Phillip graduated from Aylmer High School and attended the University of Ottawa, first obtaining a Bachelor of Arts and then his law degree in 1974.


After graduation, he moved to Calgary where he spent the majority of his career as corporate counsel with Petro-Canada.


In 1985 and 1987 respectively Phillip joyfully welcomed, with his then-wife Anne Parsonage, their son Joseph and daughter Kathleen.


After leaving Petro-Canada, Phillip turned to private practice and enjoyed several years living and working in China and Vancouver, BC, until his retirement.


Phillip never lost his love of the Pontiac region of western Quebec and often visited home to renew acquaintances and connect with family. Like many from the East who settled in the West, Phillip became a true Calgarian and Albertan.  It was in Calgary he was happiest, spending time with family and friends, walking his much-loved Labrador Retriever Harley, fishing in the Bow River (and elsewhere) and skiing in the Rockies.


Phillip is survived by and will be forever missed by his daughter Kathleen, son Joseph (Jessica Curran), beloved grandchildren Sophie and Poppy, sisters Carol (David Holmes) and Sylvia (Peter Robb), nephew and namesake Phillip Holmes (Alina Seguin), nieces Rebecca Robb (Tom Posyniak) and Laura Robb (Michael Brown), and six grandnephews and nieces.


A celebration of Phillip’s life will be planned for later in the summer.


Condolences, memories, and photos may be shared and viewed with Phillip’s family here.


In living memory of Phillip Bretzloff, a tree will be planted in the Ann & Sandy Cross Conservation Area by McInnis & Holloway Funeral Homes, Deerfoot South, 12281 – 40th Street SE, Calgary, AB T2Z 4E6, Telephone: 403-203-0525.

Share Your Memory of