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  • Deaths | Décès: l’Adjudant-chef Jean Couture; 5537 M.V. Bezeau (RRMC RMC 1962); Jim Cairns Remembered

Deaths | Décès: l’Adjudant-chef Jean Couture; 5537 M.V. Bezeau (RRMC RMC 1962); Jim Cairns Remembered

LE MUSÉE DU FORT SAINT-JEAN VOUS INFORME:

Décès de l’Adjudant-chef Jean Couture, OMM, CD

Né le 10 avril 1924, l’Adjudant-chef Jean Couture s’est éteint le samedi 8 mai 2010 à l’Hôpital des vétérans de Sainte-Anne-de-Bellevue.

L’Adjudant-chef Couture a été le Sergent-major régimentaire du Collège militaire royal de Saint-Jean pendant 17 ans, soit de 1962 à 1979. Un très grand homme respecté de tous lequel a laissé sa marque dans les annales du Collège.

L’Adjudant-chef Couture sera exposée au :

Complexe Funéraire LeSieur & Frère Ltée

95, boulevard Saint-Luc

Saint-Jean-sur-Richelieu J2W 1E2

Tél. (450) 359-0990

Fax (450) 359-7598

La famille y accueillera parents et amis le jeudi soir 13 mai de 19h00 à 22h00 et le vendredi 14 mai de 11h30 à 13h30.

Les funérailles auront lieu à la Cathédrale Saint-Jean-l’Évangéliste le vendredi à 14h00. La cathédrale est située au 215 de la rue Longueuil (à l’angle de la rue St-Jacques) dans le centre-ville de Saint-Jean-sur-Richelieu.

La famille recevra tous et toutes pour un goûter après la cérémonie au Collège militaire royal de Saint-Jean au Pavillon “Les Forges” (ancien Mess des adjudants et sergeants). Vous êtes donc tous invités à participer à la cérémonie et au goûter qui suivra pour saluer le départ de ce grand homme.

Le personnel du Musée du Fort Saint-Jean et les membres du Club Quart de Siècle transmettent leurs sincères condoléances à Madame Couture, à leur fille Jacynthe, à leur gendre Pierre Cadotte, président du CA du Musée du Fort Saint-Jean et à leurs petits-enfants.

Vos témoignages de sympathie peuvent se traduire par un don à la Fondation de l’Hôpital Ste-Anne-de-Bellevue.

Si vous désirez faire parvenir un témoignage à la famille, veuillez envoyer votre message à l’adresse suivante. Votre message sera aussi diffusé sur le site du Musée du Fort Saint-Jean section des nouvelles :

[email protected]

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5537 Mervin Vincent Bezeau (RRMC RMC 1962) passed away on April 28th, 2010, at Kelowna General Hospital. He leaves behind his wife, Frances, two sons, David Paul Bezeau and Randall Nathan Bezeau, four grandchildren, Jenny Bezeau, Jonny Bezeau, Shaylah Bezeau, and Alex Bezeau. He also leaves behind his sister, Mary Edith, his brother, Bruce, and five step brothers and sisters, Lawrence, Suzanne, Arnold, Ken, and Yvonne. Vince was born in Kitchener, Ontario in 1939 and in 1958 was accepted into Royal Roads Military College. He met his wife, Frances, at that time. He graduated from the Royal Military College in Kingston, Ontario in 1962 and joined the Royal Canadian Artillery. Vince received his Masters degree, in Military History, in Kingston, in 1977. He then worked in the Department of Military History in Ottawa. He retired from the Canadian Armed Forces in 1984 to accept the position as Director Military Traditions and Heritage at National Defense Headquarters in Ottawa. He retired from this position in 1998. Vince was the Vice President of the Okanagan Military Museum Society, a Director of the Kelowna Museums Society and very active in the preservation and interpretation of Okanagan Valley history and heritage. A memorial service was held at First Memorial Funeral Services at, 1211 Sutherland Ave. on Saturday 15th May, at 11:00 a.m. Arrangements entrusted with First Memorial Funeral Services, Kelowna. 250-762-2299 http://www.kelownadailycourier.ca/stories.php?id=264638

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Jim Cairns Remembered

by Alan Whitehorn

Dr. Cairns was a Professor of Economics and Dean of the Faculty of Arts

I am sorry I cannot be at RMC today. I am overseas in the Caucasus, but I did want to offer some comments about my dear friend and colleague. I first met Jim Cairns thirty two years ago. I was a young PhD being considered for a position as a professor of political science at the Royal Military College. I was told by some Carleton colleagues that it was a pretty conservative staff and to dress accordingly. Ever the defiant one, I wore a turtle neck shirt and prepared for the reaction. To my pleasant surprise, Jim Cairns, the Dean of Arts, was both a veteran and an old social democrat CCFer. He was greatly concerned about social justice causes. He was an economist, but also someone who was equally comfortable discussing a variety of disciplines: history, politics, philosophy, literature and grammar. He was, without a doubt, an ideal person to be a Dean of Arts. Conversations with him were always far ranging and thoughtful. Comments were always of substance, but also possessed a sense of the humorous and ironic. His path was a gentle exploration of our existential journey. He was equally at home lecturing on economic theory and offering practical gardening tips. Advice on the latter was often accompanied with fresh produce from Pat and Jim’s bountiful harvest. Frequently, seedlings were gently passed by an old veteran hand to a young academic for his starter garden. To this day, my wife Suzanne and I can look out over our gardens and see a host of plants that had their beginnings in the Cairns’ Polson Park locale.

Life at a military college is filled with interesting challenges and opportunities. Some days the challenges seem more frequent. A Dean of Arts situated within the vast bureaucratic maze of the Department of National Defence knows this all too well. After many years of dedicated service trying to reconcile academic, military and government bureaucracies, not to mention balancing the demands of professors and students, there comes a time to pass the torch on to others.

When the Dean of Arts moved from Massey to the Girouard building, he located next door to me. He focused his time and energy on teaching the large introductory economics classes. As anyone who has taught the first years knows, these are challenging classes. Students and colleagues alike benefitted from Jim’s wisdom, grace, patience, and dedication. As his next door office neighbour, who was teaching the counterpart politics introductory course, I lost count the number of times I received his wise counsel and insights on how to teach such large classes. He was an extraordinarily effective teacher. His integration of economics and politics was an inspiration to many a former cadet, some of whom are at this College today as staff.

As in many social relationships, a trying moment sometimes arises. So too, it was with Jim and I. As the computer age took hold and I became an eager disciple, I could sense Jim’s growing unease over the apparently misguided path I was travelling. Now that I am over 60, I realize how wise Jim was in this regard.

Still, I had my influence on Jim. At a senior age, he took up road running and I must confess I was a facilitator. Neither of us broke any records, but we enjoyed the comradeship. It would remain in other recreational endeavors where Jim would excel. He was a ranked chess player, a fact that was a testament to his analytical intellectual capacity.

A man is often defined in significant ways by his family. So too, it was with Jim Cairns. His younger brother, Alan Cairns, was and is still one of the most influential political scientists in Canada. Jim was always very proud of Alan and when I phoned Jim’s home, he always made sure to discern to which “Alan the political scientist” he was speaking. Please note that I used the proper grammatical form of “to which” in deference to Jim. Being an older brother was one family role. Another was of a proud father of his daughter Rosemary. He beamed over Rosemary’s academic accomplishments and growing family. She continues a wonderful legacy.

But through all, one day after another, one year upon another, one decade following another, Jim walked through the gardens with his beloved Pat. They shared a lifetime of love. They shared a passion for reading, gardening, family life and nurturing of others. As a couple, they were intellectually engaging and always ever so gracious.

To Pat, Rosemary, his brother Alan and other family members, we grieve with you the loss. But we are also brought together today to share in our memories and celebration of a gentle, thoughtful and dedicated man. He did not just teach officer cadets. He taught young professors too. He was a wonderful inspiration. Thank you, Jim. Thank you, dear comrade. Merci.

Alan

2 Comments

  • John Adamson

    May 19, 2010 at 5:07 pm

    I remember RSM Monsieur Jean Couture as an inspiring, keen and mentoring presence around the CMR parade square during my years at Saint-Jean from 1962-1965. My sincere condolences to his family and friends on his recent passing. 7243 Adamson GJ

  • John Wenek

    May 20, 2010 at 11:07 am

    Dr. Cairns could shine an illuminating light on a subject that I have often considered to be, at best, a fuzzy science, and at worst, a dark art. For those of us who were more interested in political studies, his classes were a welcome respite from the necessity of studying economics as part of the degree. Interestingly, they helped us to better understand politics. Thank you to Alan Whitehorn for his note of remembrance. His collegial insights help to form a more complete picture of Jim for those of us who only knew him as students. In closing, his family should know that he always shared the best of what he studied and knew, with those of us who joined him in class, and he often did it in a manner that made a dry subject interesting. 11732 John Wenek