For Posterity's Sake         

A Royal Canadian Navy Historical Project


In memory of those who have Crossed the Bar


Alvin John Auton


Born: 14 Sep 1923


Died: 31 Mar 2020, Halifax, Nova Scotia


AUTON, Alvin John - on Tuesday, March 31, 2020 Alvin John Auton, aged 96 years old, passed quietly into the loving arms of his heavenly Father with his son Wayne, and his caregiver Janet by his side. Alvin "Al" was predeceased by his loving wife, Valerie, with whom he shared his married life for over 75 years, and was the beloved father of Ernie (Cathy), Alvin (Donna), Wayne (Edith), Faith (Dwight), Hope (Jim); was grandfather to 11 grandchildren, and great-grandfather to 22 great-grandchildren. Albert Camus, a French Philosopher, said "In the midst of winter, there was within me an invincible summer. No matter how hard the world pushes against me, there is something stronger, something better, pushing right back." Alvin embodied that spirit of positivity, encouragement, strength, and incredible resilience. As a young boy growing up in Ontario farm country, he lived through the Great Depression. As a young man he served his country in the Second World War in the Royal Canadian Navy on the HMCS Chicoutimi and Woodstock, convoying in the North Atlantic and North Africa, and was actively engaged in the Normandy Invasion. He said, "I was just a young boy off a farm, didn't know what it was to be afraid." Alvin was rarely afraid. Within him there was that "invincible summer" that demonstrated itself in his vocation as an industrial painter and contractor. Through business successes and challenges, he believed, and taught us all to believe, that you are "never a failure if when you fail, you just get back up there and keep on going." There is something stronger, something better, pushing right back. In the city of Halifax, there are so many buildings that are indelibly stamped with his painting and contracting signature. Among them are the Prince Edward Island Confederation Bridge, the Sir Charles Tupper Building, Building "D" Dockyards, and the Rebecca Cohn Auditorium-all legacy landmarks attributed to Alvin and his businesses. He was not a man who was afraid to pursue his dreams, and he was never hesitant to roll up his sleeves in his pursuit of personal growth. As an avid learner, he completed the Dale Carnegie Leadership Training for Managers in the 1960s, far ahead of his time. As a father, he raised his children to fish, hunt, cook and clean. He taught us to live the adventure. He challenged us to rise above whatever challenges we faced in our lives and was such an amazing example to all of us of his unwavering support and open, tender, and forgiving spirit. Alvin was a man of tremendous faith, devoted to serving in his church community at Full Gospel Church. He served as Trustee, Deacon, and as an inspirational Chairman of the Deacon Board for over 30 years, only retiring when he was 90! His life, his example, his leadership touched the lives of so many. He was a dad and a grandad who prayed for us and with us, and who always believed in the best for us. He believed there was always something and someone stronger at work within us and around us. Lastly, who could know Alvin without appreciating his gift of humour, or his regular "gift" to his grandchildren of sticking his false teeth out to frighten them? He had an irrepressible twinkle of mischief in his eyes that could soften the edges of any challenge and invite us to join in laughter together. In the midst of our winter, facing life without him, we are all reminded that he will always represent that invincible summer. Our family would like to thank the caregivers from Always Home, Dr. Spicer, Rev. Gary Barrett, and the people of Full Gospel Church for their love and support during his life, and especially during these past few years. A Celebration of Life will be held at a later date. (Halifax Chronicle-Herald 04 Apr 2020)


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