John MAITLAND

Obituary
9 entries
  • "Farewell Jack and thank you for being my friend. You were a..."
    - Andy McG
  • "Beautiful Obituary! Jack passed away on July 15th but the..."
    - Cec Dumont
  • "Jack was and always will be a great inspiration to me; a..."
    - Allan F.
  • "Our thoughts and prayers go out to you."
    - Mark & Robbie Losch
  • "My sincere sympathies to the family and friends."
    - Gerry(ret'd RCAF) Hebert
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MAITLAND, John (Jack) O.
(Wing Commander, retired, RCAF)
On Tuesday, July 15, 2014, in Ottawa, Jack slipped the surly bonds of earth and went to join the love of his life, Marion. Jack once said that his life was a B picture starring someone else. But on behalf of those of us who played bit parts, here's the rundown. Jack was born in Moose Jaw and spent a brief period on a farm in southern Ontario. One day, in 1927, he saw a biplane fly past, and he had heard that the pilot of that aircraft was on his way to Europe. At the ripe old age of seven, he decided that that was what he was going to do for a living. Well, be careful what you wish for! After the family moved to Winnipeg, Jack played Junior A and was drafted by the New York Rangers. By his own admission, he was a tough player. But it was 1940 and he had a choice to make, and Adolf Hitler had personally arranged for dad's childhood dream of flying across the Atlantic to come true. Jack joined the air force instead, and was a bomber pilot who served in Britain and North Africa, flying Wellingtons and Lancasters in Bomber Command. This was followed by Ferry Command, Training Command, and in post-War Canada, Search and Rescue in the North, followed by Transport Command, with peacekeeping missions to the Congo and a relief mission to Chile. Dad was an honorary colonel in the Chilean Air Force. Dad flew the Atlantic over one thousand times. After retiring from the military, Jack joined Transport Canada as a safety expert for the aviation industry. Dad had an abiding love for large airplanes with many engines. Perhaps this explains his devotion to Buicks. Thanks to his starring role in his own B grade movie, Dad had a million anecdotes. Some of them are touching, some tragic, others funny, and all revealed an underlying decency and humanity. Despite a difficult childhood, and thanks to Marion (née Boast; stunning, smart and wise), Dad became Dad. While he appreciated his rank (Wing Commander), we felt his best title was "Dad." We are: Andrea (Doug and Alex), David (Jennifer), Gordon (Pam, Katie, Jeff, Violet, Elmer, Robert, Janelle, Dean, Luke, Allison, Chris); Leslie (Dan, Sarah, Simon, David). Thanks to Dad's friends, Bill, Margaret and many others. And for the next generation to come. There are too many to name who were touched by his life. Warm thanks to the wonderful people at the Civic Campus of the Ottawa Hospital. A donation to the Ottawa Mission or a charity of your choice would be lovely. Otherwise, be good. Or, at least collect some good anecdotes. "Stay out of the gin." A private family Celebration of his Life will be held at a later date.
Condolences/Tributes /Donations at
mcgarryfamily.ca
613-728-1761

Published in The Ottawa Citizen on July 19, 2014
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