It is with heavy hearts and the fondest of memories we announce the passing of our beloved Husband, Dad, Grandpa and Great Grandpa, Harold Houghton at the age of 99 years in Kamloops, BC. Harold is survived by his loving wife Sylvia of 70 years, his daughter Wendy, son-in-law Rod, 4 grandsons – Dylan (Alison), Ryan (Cary), Garrett (Elizabeth), Branden (Felicia) and 6 great grandchildren – Everett, Nathan, Lochlan, Rebecca. Derek, and Holden. Harold was predeceased by his parents Cyril and Ester and his older sister Iris who he adored.
Harold was born in Sheffield, England and was a proud Seaman of the UK Merchant Marines from 1942 to 1951. He served his country as an Engineering Officer aboard The Celtic Star, The Pasteur, The Duchess of Richmond, The Empress of Scotland, The Admiral Cunningham, S.S. Charmouth Hill, and the S.S. Notting Hill. While serving aboard The Celtic Star as the Assistant Engineer, he was torpedoed March 29th, 1943 by the Italian submarine “Finzi” and The Celtic Star sunk on March 30th, 1943 off the coast of South Africa. After 3-4 days in a life raft the crew was rescued by the H.M.S Wastwater and taken to Freetown, Sierra Leone to await his return to England 3 months later. During this time, he found his love for travel and the sea.
Harold married the love of his life Sylvia on August 30th, 1951, and shortly afterwards immigrated to Vancouver B.C. They made their home in Burnaby where Harold was always taking on a new project for the house. Harold worked for Standard Oil / Chevron at the Burnaby Refinery as a Machinist Engineer and Foreman from 1951 to when he retired in 1985. He loved the ocean breezes and soaking up the sun on the beaches of Hawaii or California. He was a tireless, meticulous hard worker because as he would say ” You don’t get anything done just standing around.” No matter how hard or difficult something was his motto was ” You have to try” and try he did as he had beaten the dreaded “C” cancer 4 times. His final challenge was Alzheimer’s.
Harold was a kind, generous, proud loving man who would do anything for anybody. If something needed fixing, he was always there with a solution and spent many hours tinkering away in the garage or at his workbench. He was a firm believer in honesty, integrity, and family. He always spoke a kind word. He had a passion for the outdoors and all living creatures. He stood strong in his belief to live and let live. A bug in the house meant you catch it and let it go outside. He had a definite sweet tooth and a love for chocolate and licorice. Most days usually meant a coffee and Timbits at Tim’s and we sure didn’t have to ask twice if he wanted to go out for lunch or dinner. His favourite British poet/comedian was Marriott Edgar. Harold never tired of “The Lion and Albert” and could recite the entire poem which always ended with him laughing and a huge grin on his face.
Harold continually gave the gift of life by being a regular blood donor and was a registered organ donor. In memory of Harold please pay his kindness forward by doing a good deed for someone in need. ” For only what we give away enriches us from day to day”. Harold supported the following charities: BC Cancer, Heart and Stroke, SPCA, Wildlife Rescue, and the Royal Columbian Hospital.
“Now is the hour, when we must say goodbye,
Soon you’ll be sailing, far across the sea,
While you’re away, oh please remember me.
I’ll dream of you, if you will dream of me,
Each hour I’ll miss you, here across the sea,
It’s not goodbye, it’s just a sweet adieu.”
We are all ships returning home laden with life’s experiences, memories of work, good times, and sorrow, each with our own special cargo. Until we meet again.
Always to be remembered and never to be forgotten. By request no formal service. His ashes will be scattered at a future date.
Cremation arrangements entrusted to Drake Cremation and Funeral Services.Print This Obituary & Condolences