Peacefully, on January 19th, 2005 Harold left us to join his beloved wife Inez, who predeceased him October 28th, 2004. He was a devoted and adoring husband to Inez for sixty years and could not bear being separated from her.
To his children, Judy (Bill), Gayle (Brent), Janice (Brian), Larry, Jack, and Cathy (Dave) he was a loving and sentimental father who could be counted on to drop everything to take us and half the neighbourhood to a drive-in movie, or pack up to go camping or fishing. Everything was an adventure.
He was a magical Boppa with twinkling blue eyes to his grandchildren (Erin, Stephanie (Mathias), Matthew (Jennifer), Susan (Kris), Sara (Rich), Adam, Nolan, Mairin, Justin (Sarah), Janice, Tanner, Emily and Stephanie, whether he was making porridge, singing cowboy songs like Whoopie Tai Yi Yo or coaxing lifesavers out of little ears. His songs, stories, and expressions (“Heidy Ho”; “Yumpin Yiminy”) will be passed on to his great grandchildren, Isabella, Tai, Francesca, Charlie, Madison, Koa, Luke, Leo, Morgan, Olive Inez, Jinnaya, and counting.
Born in Winnipeg in 1920, Harold spent teenage years on a ranch in Rockglen, Saskatchewan. He rode in the local rodeo and sustained a back injury while breaking a horse at the ranch that would prevent him from realizing his dream of joining the Air Force. He attended Gordon Bell High School in Winnipeg, and met and married Inez, the love of his life, in 1944. After several years selling farm machinery for the John Deere Co., Harold joined Air Canada (then Trans Canada Airlines) in 1954 as a passenger agent and was the Vice President of the Employee’s Union for many years. He was an unstinting employee was always ready to do back to back shifts to help a co-worker and whose knowledge of connecting flight times and routes in a pre-computer age was legendary among his colleagues.
Harold also had an irrepressible calling to be an inventor with sometime mixed results – such as his experiments with alternative fuel for cars and mosquito repelling lawn mowers.
Retiring to BC, Harold and Inez indulged their love of travel. Dad also enjoyed golfing, woodworking and winemaking. He was active in the Hollyburn chapter of the Gyro club and later president of the Panorama Terrace Condo Association in Abbotsford where he and Inez made dear friends.
These last years Dad has been suffering the ravages of Alzheimer’s disease, but even with the toll it took from him and from us, it could never completely vanquish his loving spirit, his devotion to his wife and family and his gentlemanly ways. He would come back to us to kiss our mother, to tell us he loved us, and to thank us for being there. We are eternally grateful that he was our Dad and Boppa and we know that he and Mum are once again together.
The family would like to thank the care workers on the care floor of Langley Gardens for the respectful and compassionate care given to our father.
According to their wishes, there will be a private celebration of their lives in April. Donations can be made to the Alzheimer’s Society.