RCAF, F/O, Squadron 427, BSC – UBC
April 26, 1922 – February 25, 2014
With great sadness the family of Hugh McGregor announce his passing at the age of 91 years. Hugh leaves his loving wife and the love of his life for fifty-nine years, Pauline (nee Churchward); his sons, Chris and Mark McGregor; his daughter, Josette McGregor (Scott Taylor); two grandchildren, Evelyn and Jonah Taylor-McGregor; nieces, Holly Mulloy (Al), Donna Pozzolo (Donald), Georgette Florence (Tinker), Heather Robertson (Jim), Marilyn Kindree (Glenn), Sheila Petrongolo (Enzo), Maxine LaRose (Russ); nephew, Murray McLean (Jackie); sister-in-law, Amy McGregor; brother-in-law, Jack Churchward (Sylvia); and cousin, Douglas MacGregor (Dorothy) and family in England. Hugh was predeceased by his brothers John, George and Robert, and his sister Nancy (McLean). Hugh was born in Lochgilphead, Scotland in 1922 and moved to the family farm near Kitscoty, AB when he was just two. Hugh grew up working on the farm where he developed an insatiable appetite for both work and the outdoors. In 1940 World War II
beckoned and Hugh left the farm to join the Royal Canadian Air Force (RCAF) becoming a flying officer in 1942. Hugh was an upper turret gunner on Halifax bombers and somehow survived, despite a few close calls in over thirty missions, before the war's end in 1945. After his discharge in 1946, Hugh completed his high school matriculation and left the farm once more to enter UBC. He graduated in 1951 with a Bachelor of Science degree. In 1951 he joined Petty Ray Geophysical, which soon sent him searching for oil in Iraq. On a rare trip home to Canada in 1954, he met a pretty young thing in Lloydminster. She invited him home to dinner and when Hugh left a week later to resume work in Iraq his soon-to-be wife Pauline had a promise and a ring. Letters flew back and forth and soon their wedding planned for Lloydminster, and then London, was finally on in Cyprus. In early 1955, Pauline left home to fly to Cyprus where they were married by a lone official, his helper and several goats as witnesses. Despite their ten-day whirlwind romance, and their start in rocky Cyprus, Hugh and Pauline went on to sail smoothly through fifty-nine years of happy marriage. They raised three children while traipsing through the Middle East, South America and Africa before returning to Canada in 1967. True to his farming roots, Hugh loved his work in the field and it let him explore five continents over a storied 38-year career. Pauline was in charge of all else and somehow never lost a child in transit nor her sense of humor while moving. When retirement finally reared its ugly head, they "downsized" from their city split-level by building a new dream home on a quarter section west of the city. Building fences and gardens, tending to horses, and making new friends have kept both of them busy for the last 14 years, until Hugh's condition took him away from the farm one last time. He will be greatly missed by all who knew him for his strength, humility, integrity and that sparkle in his beautiful blue eyes. A Celebration for Hugh will be held at the Beaupre Hall (West of Cochrane) on March 22, 2014 from 2:00 to 4:00 p.m. Condolences may be forwarded through www.mcinnisandholloway.com
. Donations can be made directly to The Poppy Fund and Veterans Food Bank, Canadian Hospice Palliative Care Association or, Dying With Dignity Canada. The McGregor family would like to thank the staff at the Carewest Sarcee Care Centre, and Unit 47 of the Foothills Hospital for their kindness, patience and compassion. In living memory of Hugh McGregor, a tree will be planted at Big Hill Springs Park, Cochrane.