September 2, 2019
Roy passed away peacefully September 2nd with his family by his side in Comox. Roy leaves Shirley, his wife of 63 years, his son Tom (Helen), his daughter Eleanor (Erik) Meertens and his daughter Kathryn (Michael) Bowen and their six beautiful grandchildren Kody and Kassy Dishlevoy, Lukas Meertens and Henry, Audrey and Ross Bowen.
Roy loved airplanes ….. he attended school at Northrop Aeronautical Institute in Hawthorne, California and after completion he left his home and birthplace in Timmins, Ontario to begin his career in Montreal at Canadair.
As a young airplane designer his first experience was with a group designing the Canadair CT-114 Tutor airplane better known here in the Comox Valley as the airplane that wears the colours of our Canadian Snowbirds.
While at Canadair he learned to fly a glider and later on in life he received his private pilot’s license.
At this time Shirley came into his life and their journey together began.
After leaving Montreal they spent may happy years in Calgary. With a family came changes and with Roy’s love of airplanes they began building and flying their own models and spent many happy hours flying home built planes in the big skies of Alberta.
Roy also had a lifetime love affair with the Noorduyn Norseman bush plane and signs soon appeared, mostly on the dining room table, that a rather large, scratch built true scale model of this airplane was in the making. He continued on with this model into retirement with its completion and inaugural flight early in 2000. This beautiful scale piece of Canadian aviation history flew on wheels and on floats gracing the skies at many events on Vancouver Island where Roy and Shirley had retired. Roy was honoured to have many skilled pilots offering to fly his Norseman as his eyesight faded and fingers became less nimble as was necessary to avoid the risk of contacting any one of the tall trees in the area of the Merville radio control flying field.
As time went on he became less active in flying his models and more time was spent at the computer pursuing another dream of researching and writing a book on the aircraft history of the Noorduyn Norseman Bush Plane and this was accomplished and completed shortly before he died.
He will be remembered by his family as a great dad and “grampa” to Kody, Kassy, Lukas, Henry, Audrey and Ross – there is no love as the love of a grandchild, and we suggest in his memory, that you hug someone you love today
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