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Vernon Rupert WHITMAN

Obituary
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WHITMAN, F/L Vernon Rupert March 24, 1916 October 6, 2011 Beloved husband of the late Eileen May (nee Hawkins) for 59 years. Loving father of Judith Jenner (Stuart) (Hamilton, Ontario), Debra Whitman (Brian Wastenage) (Victoria, B.C.), and Lawrence Whitman (Lyndsay Miller) (Sydney, Australia); grandfather to Brenda, Sherry, Holly, and Judson; greatgrandfather to Curtis, Alicia, and Cory. Born in Nictaux Falls, Nova Scotia, and raised on the family farm `Hillcrest' along with his nine siblings. Predeceased by 8 siblings, survived by Eleanor Cousins of Port Credit, Ontario. Vern aspired to join the RCAF at a young age and demonstrated his dedication to serving his country, after starting his training at Camp Borden in 1938 as an aero engine mechanic. He moved into the aeronautical engineering branch in 1944. He became a Flight Lieutenant in 1959. This career spanned 28 years of comradeship, adventure, world travel, danger, and fun. He served twice in the United Nations in Peace Keeping roles: on the Gaza Strip in the Middle East, and in the Belgian Congo/ Zambia. He was stationed in Halifax, the Queen Charlotte Islands, Rivers, Chatham, Calgary, Goose Bay, Lachine, Trenton, Sea Island, and Namao. His next career as a stockbroker and manager of Pacific Western Securities cemented his passion for the financial world until his last days. He learned to use a computer at the age of 85 and continued to invest in stock trading on the internet until his very last day. He was a director of the Trenton air force Credit Union, and a hockey coach for the Goose Bay air force hockey team. He worked for Imperial Oil in his early life, and National Trust in his later years. In later life he completed a cabinet-making course from S.A.I.T. in Calgary. Throughout his life hunting, fishing, curling, square dancing, scrabble, cribbage and family gatherings gave him great joy. He was a Master Gardener and enjoyed his lifestyle with his gardens overlooking Lake Okanagan in Peachland. Winemaking, taxidermy, beekeeping, and lapidary work were great hobbies for him. Travels took him around the world, from Greenland to Tasmania, Africa to China, New Zealand to Nova Scotia. Many trips (13) to Australia to visit his son and Alice Gorman were special events in his life. He was a member of the Dodo Bird Club (exFlight Sergeants whose rank was eliminated from the military, making them virtually extinct). The club motto: Distinction to Extinction". Being born during the First (Great) World War, starting work at an early age for 10 cents per day, living through the Depression years and Second World War, he taught his children the value of a dollar and that 110% effort was required to succeed in life. With an open door policy to his home, many individuals considered themselves to be second sons or daughters of Vern. Sadly missed by family and friends from around the world from Canada to Australia, a Celebration of Life memorial will be held Wednesday, October 12th, 2 p.m., at Vern's last residence, the Victorian at McKenzie, 4000 Douglas St., Victoria, B.C. 639774
Published in Victoria Times-Colonist on Oct. 12, 2011
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