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Matthias (Thijs) Botman of Vancouver and Montreal left us quietly on April 26, 2012 after a struggle with Parkinson's disease.
He was born in 1926 in Haarlem, the Netherlands. His father had been the captain of a merchant marine ship. In his teenage years he endured the occupation of Holland during WWII. Following the war, he studied Aeronautical Engineering at the Delft University of Technology in the Netherlands, and served in the Royal Dutch Navy, where he met his future wife Puck. They married, started a family, and in 1955 moved to Montreal so that Matthias could pursue his career in aeronautics.
A highly regarded engineer, Matthias became a leading specialist in the field of vibrations analysis, particularly with turbine jet engines. He authored many technical papers, spoke at technical conferences and lectured at Sir George Williams University. He belonged to the Ordre des Ingenieurs du Quebec. During his long and successful engineering career he worked for aerospace firms Canadair, North American Aviation and United Aircraft of Canada/Pratt & Whitney Canada, where he served as Chief of Dynamics, retiring in 1992.
He retired to Vancouver where he was able to share his love of sailing with his children and grandchildren.
Matthias is survived by Maria (Puck) Berends – Botman and their children: Elisabeth (Richard Migicovsky; Eric and Anna), Pieter, Richard, Robert (Melissa Weyland; Theodore, Beatrice and Jasper) and Anne Marie (Al Banner; Kaitlyn).
A private family memorial was held in Vancouver on April 28, 2012. Family tribute: www.botman.ca
Published in The Gazette on May 5, 2012