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George Thomas Pryde

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George Thomas Pryde

March 5, 1921 - January 3, 2014


It is with great sadness that we announce the passing of our father, grandfather and great-grandfather, whom we all knew as Geordie or in Pipe Band circles, “Faither.”

Geordie was born in the coal mining village of Newton Grange in the parish of New Battle, Midlothian, Scotland. As many boys did at that time, he started digging coal at age 14 and was proud to have his mother call him the “breadwinner,” as his father had been injured in a mining accident and was off work for years.

The war took Geordie out of the mines to the White Cliffs of Dover, where he was Lance-Jack on an anti-aircraft squad, shooting down the bombers that blitzed South England until he was returned, unhappily, to the coal mines, as a necessary service.

Geordie admired the kilt so he took up pipe band drumming to procure one. He was an avid multi-faceted drummer whose talent and drive earned him worldwide renown. This also got him out of the coal mines as the Edinburgh City Police Pipe Band lowered the constables’ height requirement briefly to add him to its drum corps, where he aided the band in attaining world championship status. As drum sergeant, he personally won the Scottish Solo Championship commonly known as the Worlds. With ECP, he travelled as widely north as Scandinavia and proudly participated in the Rhodes Exposition in South Africa.

In the 1950s and 1960s, the Powell River Company advertised worldly for pipers and drummers to re-build its band. Geordie immigrated to Powell River in 1957. His wife and their three children followed months later, crossing the Atlantic by boat and Canada by train. His police experience placed him in mill security until he retired to Paradise Valley, where his many joys included his grandchildren, dogs and ponies. He also travelled widely teaching and judging at drum schools and tattoos.

[*]Some may remember Geordie at the many Powell River beaches where he swam 365 days of the year, including winter, jogging through the snow to warm up.

Geordie is predeceased by his father Geordie, mother Nancy, wife Mary and youngest daughter Nancy. He is missed and remembered by his children Roddie (Sheila), George and Margaret (Terry, his good son), brother Tommie (Madeline), sisters Peggy, Nessie and Betty and many grandchildren, greatgrandchildren, nieces and nephews.

Thanks to Dr. Schweitzer and many, many thanks to all of the nurses and aides at Evergreen Extended Care Unit for the fine care and compassion shown to my father during his stay with them. We would also like to thank the folks who visited and especially Freddie MacLeod and his bagpipes.

No service by “Faither’s” request.

When praised for his talent and achievements, he would say, “Don’t forget. We’re just plain folk.”



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From: Stubberfield Funeral Home Ltd. Staff

Stubberfield Funeral Home Ltd. Staff send our condolences to family and friends.

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