LANGTON, John Gerald Patrick
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9 May, 1923 - 2 May, 2013
Peacefully, after several days in Kingston General Hospital, John Gerald Patrick Langton passed away in the early hours of May 2. Born in Merthyr Tydfil, Wales to Welsh and Irish parents, and later raised in Newry, Northern Ireland, John enlisted in the British Army at the age of eighteen. An opportunity to travel to India two years later saw him commissioned as a 2nd Lieutenant in His Majesty's Indian Army. In 1946, while John was overseeing the disposal of ordnance in Borneo, an explosive device detonated; he was severely injured and lost part of his left arm. He returned to Ireland to recuperate, and was discharged with the rank of Captain in 1947.
In 1952, John immigrated to Canada. While working and living in Toronto, he met and later married (1957) his wife, Josephine. Also in 1957, he was commissioned as a Captain in the Canadian Army. Service in the Army meant frequent moves with Jo and their children; Moira, Sean and Christina. Postings included: Borden, Hagersville, Fort Churchill and Shilo in Canada; and Hemer, Iserlohn, Soest and Lahr in West Germany. After retiring from the Army in 1973, he enjoyed a second career with the provincial government in Fredericton, NB. He and Jo moved to Kingston in 1985.
A nature-lover and avid gardener, John delighted in the outdoors. He read on a wide range of topics, and enjoyed recounting tales of his enriched life. Blessed with a great sense of humour, he always enjoyed a good laugh.
John was a longtime member of the War Amputations of Canada, serving in various capacities including National Director for Eastern Canada. He was a Knight Commander of the Order of St. John, member of the Burma Star Association, member of the Order of St. Lazarus and the recipient of two Queen's Jubilee medals.
Predeceased by his sisters, Catherine (Kitty) and Anne (Nan), he leaves to mourn him: sisters Margaret (Peggy) and Theresa (Terry), wife Jo, daughters Moira and Christina, son Sean, granddaughters Madeleine, Rebecca and Alexandra, and many nieces and nephews. As a husband, father, brother and friend, John will be deeply missed, yet well remembered. A memorial Mass will be held at The Church of the Good Thief, 743 King St. West Kingston ON, May 9 at 2 pm. Arrangements entrusted to the Gordon F. Tompkins Funeral Home – Township Chapel, 613-546-5150. For those who wish, donations may be made to the War Amps of Canada or the St. John Ambulance, in John's memory. Sharing Memories at www.gftompkins-township.ca
Published in National Post on May 4, 2013