(April 22, 1929 – July 9, 2007)
The sun was shining and the skies were clear as Gogi took off for his last flight on July 9th, 2007. Gogi had a lifelong love for aviation. He built both model and homebuilt airplanes and flew them out of Delta air park. For several years he was president of the Experimental Aircraft Association Chapter 85. He owned and managed Sport Aviation an airplane supply company and during the 1970’s he was co-designer for the WW 1 SE5A Replica biplane. It became a classic in it’s own time and squadrons of Replica SE5’s are flying around the world, in Canada, UK, USA, NZ.
Gogi took on the job of General Manager of the Canadian Museum of Flight at Langley Airport, BC. During Gogi’s administration, the museum received four Canadian Owners & Pilots Association Awards, Gogi himself received COPA’s highest national honour, the AOPA Silver Tray in 1996, and was the first Western Canadian to be so honored. He retired in 2003 but continued to help build and repair airplanes in his workshop.
Gogi is survived by his loving wife Jean (nee Reeder), his sister Joan (Jim) McGuiness, his brother Duncan, his three children, Sharon (Fred Sommer), Barb (Cam McGowan) and Robert (Karen) and six grandchildren.
“Oh! I have slipped the surly bonds of Earth
And danced the skies on laughter-silvered wings;
Sunward I’ve climbed, and joined the tumbling mirth
Of sun-split clouds – and done a hundred things
You have not dreamed of – wheeled and soared and swung
High in the sunlit silence. Hov’ring there,
I’ve chased the shouting wind along, and flung
My eager craft through footless halls of air. . . .
Up, up the long, delirious burning blue
I’ve topped the wind-swept heights with easy grace
Where never lark, or ever eagle flew —
And, while with silent, lifting mind I’ve trod
The high untrespassed sanctity of space,
Put out my hand, and touched the face of God.
— John Gillespie Magee, Jr.
No funeral service will be held at this time. A celebration of Gogi’s life will be held in September.
In lieu of flowers please send your donation in the memory of “Gogi” to the Canadian Museum of Flight in Langley or to a charity of your choice.