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for Alan Keith Rimmer Member No. 402
It is with great sadness that we announce the passing of Alan Keith Rimmer, on April 18th,
2019 in Kitchener Ontario after a brief illness, at the age of 84.
Alan was born on August 7th, 1934, in Manchester, England.
He was the fourth child of Lena Boardman and William F. Rimmer.
He had just turned five when Britain declared war against Germany in September 1939.
Alan kept a vivid memory of that day: “Heavy rain and dark clouds seemed to symbolize
war. I recall building an Anderson Air Raid shelter in the back garden with heavy rain
filling the excavation with water. Mother took me to the Church Hall to enrol me in
kindergarten school, but I ran away and never attended.” After the war Alan helped his
dad doing electrical wiring on weekends and during summers and then delivered
newspapers to the end of 1947. That year, at the tender age of thirteen, his mother
desirous of a better life, they boarded “The Aquitania” and sailed from Southampton to Halifax, Nova Scotia. They then
travelled by train to their first Canadian home in Montreal, Quebec, after having Lyn (Alan’s sister born in Canada) vouch
for them. Alan often said that the most important thing his mother ever did for him, apart from giving birth to him, was to
more about his ancestry and the difficult life his coal-mining grandparents had endured.
Alan graduated from UBC in Geology and Zoology in 1959. He conducted mineral exploration work in northern Canada
before going on to teach in Newfoundland, Toronto, and then at Conestoga College in Kitchener
He was an avid printer, silk-screener, and beekeeper during family years in Hillsburgh.
Alan leaves behind three children from his first marriage to Ellie Rimmer; Susan, Jeremy and Tom. With great affection,
love and gratitude, Alan will be remembered by his spouse Thérèse Drouin of Kitchener. His caring attitude and helpful,
resourceful disposition made him a reliable and trustworthy partner of many friends, acquaintances and fellow citizens.
Alan had a sister Lyn Lindstrom who had served in the Balloon Barrage in London and Alan wrote a book about her in 2007:
“How My Sister Won the War and Pacified the Middle East With the Help of Some Friends”.
The newsletter of the BBRC was a way for Alan to still be connected to his sister, but more importantly, it gave Alan a
appreciation for people involved in the Balloon Barrage during WWII.
Alan gifted all his copies of the BBRC newsletter and his book on his sister’s balloon experiences to Laurier Centre for
Strategic and Disarmament Studies in Canada where they have been archived.
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