John Peter passed away in Richmond, BC on February 21, 2018 at the age of 92. He is survived by his loving wife Winnifred and their eight children: Kathleen, Ann Marie, Peter (Margaret), Michael (Julie), Mary Susan (Paul), Theresa (Francis), John (Kimberly) and Carolyn (Brett) as well as 20 grandchildren and 10 great grandchildren.
Dad was born in Fort Qu’Appelle, Saskatchewan on May 24, 1925, of an Irish mother and an English father. He grew up in Britain, mainly Glasgow and the north of England but always spent all the summers of his youth in Ireland with his grandparents for whom he had a tremendous fondness and where he earned medals for his Irish dancing. At the age of 16, he enlisted in the Royal Air Force, lying about his age to get into the adventure and avoid the coal mines! He had three exciting years as a flight mechanic based in Maison Blanc in North Africa getting to travel to Rome twice for an audience with Pope Pius XII with the White Fathers. His ship, the Windsor Castle, was torpedoed off the coast of Sicily; Dad, ever the good sleeper, slept through it and had to be awakened to abandon ship!
He decided to return to the country of his birth after the war and the same week, met the love of his life, Winnifred Booth. They married in 1950 and due to Dad’s job with Dun and Bradstreet, moved eight times all over southern Ontario and as far west as Calgary, being blessed with a new baby each move. Ever the adventurer, Dad moved the family to Glasgow, Scotland in 1971, where he started his own manufacturing business. Mum and Dad stayed there for ten years, enjoying their life together, travelling all over Europe and welcoming many overseas guests including Mum’s sole surviving sister Mary Coats and her husband Jim. Upon returning to Canada in 1983, Mum and Dad settled in Richmond BC., returning often to Scotland and Ontario to visit children and relatives. They joined St. Joseph the Worker Parish where Dad became a Knight of Columbus and they made many friends.
The family has been so heartened by the outpouring of love for our Dad - friends, relatives, carers, extended family - all remembering his great sense of humour, his fondness for “a wee dram,” his friendliness and easygoing nature. Dad will be greatly missed but we now have our own guardian angel in Heaven. God bless you, Dad!
Our heartfelt thanks to Drs. Robert Mackenzie, Ebtia, Hennessey, Schendel, Butler, all the nurses who cared so well for him at Richmond General Hospital, our wonderful home help from Paramed and the nurses from Community Outreach Pharmacy who helped keep him in such good health for so long. Special thanks from the family to St. Patrick Regional Secondary School for all the compassion and tremendous support and allowing Ann Marie to be with our parents.
Prayers will held at St. Joseph the Worker Parish, 4451 Williams Road, Richmond, BC at 6:30 pm Monday March 5, 2018 followed by a Mass of Christian Burial on Tuesday March 6, at 10:30 am to be celebrated by Father Mark McGuckin.