PENNER, Edward

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January 3, 1920 – December 17, 2017

It is with great sadness that we announce the passing of our dear father.

Dad was predeceased by our mother Joan [Hodsdon] who died in 2003 and our sister Terry [Arthur] who died in 2000. Father of Susan [Mario], Patricia [Euclid], Tim [Rita] and Robin.

Grandfather of 12 and great-grandfather of 7. Dad was born near Aberdeen, Saskatchewan, in 1920, and remained on the family farm until he enlisted in the war effort in 1941.

He trained as an air gunner and was commissioned to Flight Officer, receiving his operational training in Ventura before being seconded by the RAF and posted to the United Kingdom in 1943.

It was there, in London, that he met Joan Hodsdon. After operational training in Boston light bombers, he was posted to North Africa to support General Montgomery’s army. He flew 65 sorties in North Africa, Sicily and Italy before his yearlong rest tour as Chief Gunner at an RAF station near Tel Aviv. In Haifa, in the former Palestine, he married our mother who had been posted there as a WAAF and map plotter for the RAF.

Dad returned home in 1945 and Mom immigrated in 1946 to meet him in Clark’s Crossing, Saskatchewan, as one of the 4800 war brides that came to Canada.

They started their family and Dad attended the University of Saskatchewan by virtue of The Veterans Charter.

He completed his MSc in Agrology and joined the Division of Building Research of the National Research Council in Ottawa in 1953.  During his 32-years as a research scientist and, ultimately, Head of Soil Mechanics, he published 65 papers and travelled the world presenting at conferences and advising on advanced construction solutions.

Dad retired in 1985 to numerous hobbies, including wood working, gardening, wine making, and his piano-playing. This turned into organ-playing in the Sault, where he purchased his own electronic organ and his church allowed him to play their organ outside of hours for his personal pleasure.

He moved to Sault Ste. Marie in 2004 after Mum died.

Dad was born into a Mennonite family but, following the war, joined the United Church of Canada with Mom.

He was always proud to share that he had been ordained as an elder at Mackay United Church in Ottawa. Dad’s last years in Sault Ste. Marie were happy ones. He enjoyed the warmth and friendliness of the people of the Sault, and found community at Collegiate Heights Retirement Home and at St. Andrews United Church.

We are proud of his accomplishments and forever grateful for his full and happy life, and for his peaceful passing.

Edward’s family are very grateful for the generous and compassionate care he received both at Collegiate Heights and the Maple View Nursing Home.

Memorial Service to be held at the Arthur Funeral Home – Barton & Kiteley Chapel (492 Wellington St. E. 705-759-2522) in the chapel on Saturday, January 6, 2018 at 10:00 am.

Rev. Eun-Joo Park officiating.

In lieu of flowers donations may be made to The Salvation Army, The Ontario Lung Association, or the St Andrew’s Church Memorial Fund.

Expressions of sympathy may be offered at www.arthurfuneralhome.com