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Thomas Richard Futer

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Thomas Richard Futer

June 8, 1920 - June 18, 2012


Born July 8, 1920 at Horn Farm, Exton near Oakham, Rutland, England; died peacefully in his own home June 18, 2012 in Powell River, BC of natural causes. Predeceased by his wife Mae in 1999, and elder sister Mary in 1990. Survived by his identical twin brother Fred of North Vancouver, and younger brother George of Parksville; by his daughter Pamela (Gordon Mitchell); and by the pride and focus of his later years his three grandchildren Tom, Mike, and Mary Mitchell.

Tom immigrated to Canada with his parents at the age of two to Sedgewick, Alberta. They moved not long after to coastal BC where the climate was more suitable to an English family. He grew up in Cloverdale and Port Kells spending endless summer days at White Rock roaming the beach and catching crabs. In 1940 he enlisted in the Canadian Air Force and commenced a distinguished flying career retiring after 30 years with the rank of Lieutenant Colonel. He was awarded the DFC in recognition of action over the North Atlantic during the war.

In the post war years Tom was posted to air bases all across Canada; and to NATO bases in Decimomannu, Sardinia, Italy and Ramstein, Germany. He and Mae approached those many moves with a spirit of adventure, making friends and making the most of what each new place offered. In the course of his career he flew pretty much every kind of aircraft that the RCAF operated, and, as a test pilot, some that they decided not to operate. He flew resupply to remote bases in the Arctic, and Search and Rescue on the Pacific Coast. He was a jet fighter pilot, a test pilot, and a member of the RCAF’s early aerobatic team. He attributed his survival to having always flown multi-engine aircraft; no doubt he would attribute his death at the age of almost 92 to his body having been equipped with only one engine.

He was a classic fly-boy possessed of the “right stuff.” Tom was a gentleman in the truest sense of the word. His conduct was unfailingly to treat others with courtesy and respect, always polite, always proper, and with a kind and gentle manner. All who knew him warmed to this easy and gentlemanly conduct.

He died in the early hours following Father’s Day. Nothing could have been more appropriate because nothing was more important to him than his daughter and his grandchildren and he was able to be or talk with all of them on that final day.

He was uncritically supportive of his family, showered love and approval on each of them, and, when necessary, not just with words but also with a flight home financed with funds from his “contingency account,” only wanting to know what kind of aircraft they had been on, and did they sit at the rear.

The family would like to extend its thanks to the palliative care team that supported us in our support of Tom, and especially our thanks to Dr. Doug Toole, Tom’s M.O. since he moved to Powell River 20 years ago. The family would welcome a donation in Tom’s name to the Powell River Hospital Foundation. Funeral service will be held on Saturday, June 30 at 1300 at Stubberfields Funeral Home, Powell River.


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From: Stubberfield Funeral Home Ltd. Staff

Stubberfield Funeral Home Ltd. Staff send our condolences to family and friends. Our thoughts and prayers are with you all.

Service Schedule

  Funeral Service

Date & Time:
June 30, 2012
Beginning at 1:00pm

Stubberfield Chapel
7221 Duncan Street
Powell River, BC Canada V8A 1W4

7221 Duncan Street
Powell River, BC Canada V8A 1W4

Memorial Gifts

The family has not designated a preferred charity at this time.

Thank You Notice

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