Ian died peacefully at home surrounded with love and tenderness. Our family grieve the passing of this quiet, intelligent, thoughtful and charming presence in our lives, but are thankful for the years we were able to share together. We will miss his quick wit, jovial spirit, and the sound of his wonderful laugh.
Born in England, son of Ernest Dowdeswell and Beryl Ede, Ian spent his earliest years in Zanzibar, Singapore, and New Zealand. He returned to wartime England in 1944, and later shared many stories with us of his adventures and experiences at school, and exciting exploits during his National Service in the Royal Navy.
Moving to Vancouver in 1956, he worked as a draughtsman for Boyles Bros Diamond Drilling and continued there part-time while completing his BSc and MSc in Electrical Engineering at UBC. Ian’s passion for complex mathematical models continued throughout his years in systems engineering and process control applications with IBM, SDK&H, ASDG, CAGSL, Petro Canada, MacMillan Bloedel and MPR Teltech, and well into his retirement.
Ian, a natural and competitive athlete, played numerous sports and was proud to play on the Canadian Men’s Field Hockey Team to qualify for the 1964 Olympics. He loved being on the water. In Vancouver, he cherished family adventures aboard their sailboat Mageia, and loved exploring beautiful West Coast waters at the helm of his powerboat Ran. In recent years he golfed, played tennis, sang with the Keynotes Choir, and painted with friends at WV Seniors’ Activity Centre.
A wonderful father, Ian encouraged his children to make their best effort, maintain honesty and integrity, and “leave it better than you found it.” He hiked, camped, and sailed with the successful Shaughnessy Sea Scout Troop, and applauded proudly at piano, ballet, public speaking, and award presentations. Normally a soft-spoken gentleman, Ian’s voice could be heard booming support from the sidelines at soccer and field hockey games through all kinds of weather for many years. He believed that our individual successes were reinforced by the support and efforts of the rest of the group. It takes a family…
It was love at first sight when Ian met Frances over fifty years ago, and their marriage is a legacy of love, respect, and dedication to each other and the remarkable family they raised together. They held hands, sang, danced, played, laughed, explored the world by cruise ship and riverboat, and celebrated the wonder of every yesterday, today and tomorrow.
Ian is predeceased by his daughter Jocelyn, and survived by his wife Frances, daughter Jennifer, sons Jonathan, Jason (Mary, Harper, & Rhys), Justin (Suzanne, Athena, Aurora, & Ash), and Russel (Derek & Robin.)
Special thanks to family doctor Peter Lutsky for his continued care and prescriptive one-liners, and the support of caring, thoughtful neighbours and friends. A Celebration of Life will take place at a later date.
Donations may be made in his memory to the Arts Club Theatre Company.
Your sails are set, the wind is at your back, sail on Ian …