Our beloved, kind, and gentle father passed peacefully in his sleep August 13 at 5:45 a.m. Many thanks to the staff at Touchmark at Wedgewood who were so kind and caring to Dad and our whole family. The Touchmark staff fondly called him ‘Papa Ed.’
Sad, not sad. Dad was 3 months short of 102 years and in fact insisted he was 102. When asked how he was doing he would always respond with “Not bad for a guy who is 102.” Until the last year, Dad was active and although he started to lose his memory, retained his wonderful nature and clever wit.
Dad married Mom (Marjorie Cousins 1919-2018) on December 12, 1945. They had two children, David and Pam. He was very proud of his two grandsons, Ryan and Dan and Ryan’s wife, daughter-in-law Amanda. He adored his two great grandsons, Matthew and Emmett and thought it “really something special” that Emmett’s middle name ‘Edgar’ was in honour of him. At 99, Ryan had him on his Seadoo on a family houseboating trip and Dad helped a couple of times with Ryan and Amanda’s new house build. He was game for anything and an amazing Dad, Grampa, and Great Grampa!!
Mom and Dad travelled throughout the years to all the countries they wanted to see, spending weeks at a time exploring and golfing in these countries. They also took several cruises and wintered in Kihei, Maui for many, many years. Golfing was his passion although he was always very active in other activities (exploring, hiking, and cross-country skiing, etc.). When Mom passed, he remained very active and often opted to take the stairs instead of elevators.
His proudest accomplishment was serving in WWII as a RCAF navigator from 1941 until 1945, stationed in England. He was awarded a Distinguished Flying Cross in 1945. He was stationed overseas with his oldest sister, Helen who was a Wireless Op Ground (WOP). To our knowledge they were the only brother and sister to be stationed together overseas. Dad retained a membership in the 426 Thunderbird Squadron Association which enabled him to keep in contact with wartime associates.
Helping him with his memoirs, he described his worst moment as ‘flunking out of pilot training” due to a lack of depth perception, but he became an incredible navigator ending his military career as a Navigational Ground Instructor and a Flight Lieutenant.
He had an incredible career, graduating with a BASc in Mining Engineering in 1950. He spent 13 years with Alberta Government Energy Resources Conservation Board, then transferred to the Federal Government up until his retirement in 1981. After his official retirement, he was retained by contract as a consultant until he was in his nineties.
Dad dearly loved his sisters Helen (passed), Edna, Evelyn (passed), Thelma, and Phyllis and their families. He remained close to his last remaining in-law Moyra, and her children, especially Moyra’s daughter Linda (partner Pat) and her eldest brother’s son John and wife Marjorie.
We are so blessed to have had this amazing and accomplished man in our lives who to the end remained sweet, calm, compassionate and kind. In all my years, I never heard Dad raise his voice or swear. And, I believe he is now flying with the angels.