In memory of those who have Crossed the Bar

 

Clifford Henry Ross

 

Leading Seaman Quarter Rating, 4074-E, RCN

 

Born: 28 May 1923

 

Died: 27 Jan 2022, Victoria, British Columbia

 

ROSS, Clifford Henry - It is with great sadness and heavy hearts that we announce the passing of our dear Dad, Clifford (Cliff) Henry Ross, on January 27, 2022, at the age of 98. He quietly slipped away in his sleep with loving family by his side, at the Veterans Memorial Lodge at Broadmead in Victoria, BC. Cliff was born on May 28, 1923 to John (Pop) and Mabel Ross of Cowichan Station at the King's Daughters' Hospital in Duncan, BC. Cliff was predeceased by his parents, his beloved wife Mary of more than 50 years, his brother Clarence, sister-in-law, Elsie "May" Ross, and his son-in-law Robert "Bob" Olsen. Dad will be dearly missed by his four children: James "Jim" (Sharon) Ross, Robert "Bob" Ross, Diane (Robert) Mueller and Sharon Olsen. Cliff also leaves behind his six grandchildren: Jennifer Moir, Chris (Cheryl) Elzinga, Cliff Ross, Lindsay (Blake) Hafso, Matt Olsen, and Andy Olsen; and his five great-grandchildren: Brooklyn, Ryan, Alison, Ava and Charlie. Cliff grew up in Cowichan Station with his older brother, Clarence. He attended Cowichan Station Elementary School near his home, then continued his education at the Cobble Hill High School. Throughout his early years, Cliff excelled in many sports - soccer, baseball, softball, basketball, and track & field. He also enjoyed badminton, participating in tournaments with his Mom, and on one occasion proudly coming away with a mixed doubles trophy cup! On November 18, 1940, at the young age of 17, Cliff enlisted in the Royal Canadian Navy as a Boy Seaman, training at HMCS Naden in Esquimalt. For the remainder of WWII, he sailed on a number of armed merchant cruisers, including the HMCS ships - the Prince Robert, the Prince David, and the Prince Henry - patrolling the Caribbean, the coast of England, and the east and west coasts of Canada, repositioning via the Panama Canal. During the course of his service, Cliff made many life long friends. For more than 50 years after the war, many of the young men he'd enlisted with all those years ago held an annual reunion to remember their fallen comrades, share stories of their navy days and chuckle about all the "shenanigans and mischief" they got into during their shore leaves! Returning home from the war in April 1947, Cliff trained as an auto body repairman, working at a number of local auto repair shops, including Duncan Garage, before taking a job with Western Forest Industries (WFI) at Gordon River logging camp where he worked for many years. Cliff and Mary met through mutual friends and married in August 1952. Together, they settled in Cowichan Station, building their home with the help of family, friends and neighbours. Their basement was dug with Pop's team of draft horses! With the house still a "work in progress", Cliff and Mary moved into their new home in December, just as the snow began to fly, and just in time for Jim's arrival on Boxing Day! Over the next 20 years, Mom and Dad were busy raising their family of four and enjoying many family activities together - tobogganing, skating on frozen ponds, Sunday drives, picnics, swimming, fishing, and camping trips, including a cross-Canada road trip. In their early 70's, Mom and Dad ventured further afield, travelling to Ireland to visit relatives and the birthplace of Dad's father in Dunmanway, Co. Cork. Our Grandpa's home is still standing today! Dad always had projects on the go - whether at home building his large shop, a barn, assorted outbuildings, a baseball diamond in the back field complete with backstop or volunteering in the community, including the development of Bright Angel Park. During the 1960's, Dad was also involved in Cowichan Youth Soccer, coaching many kids from the South Cowichan area, including his own sons Jim & Bob. Continuing with his love of sports, Dad took up golf in his early 40's and became a long time member of the Cowichan Golf and Country Club. During his retirement years, he and Clarence would enjoy many early morning rounds of golf, which included Dad getting two "hole in ones"!! The brothers also tried their hand at curling which they enjoyed for many years with a seniors group at the local curling rink. Watching sports on TV was also a popular pastime for Dad, but it was Hockey Night in Canada that he loved the most, especially when his favourite Toronto Maple Leafs were playing! He always enjoyed humorous "discussions" with daughter Sharon on which hockey team was doing better, his Leafs or her Canucks, and hearing how her weekly golf games were coming along! At the age of 90, Dad also performed some official duties as well daughter Diane was delighted to have her Dad act as the best man at her and Robert's wedding! Dad was a long time member of the Chief & P.O.'S Association in Esquimalt, BC, and the Temple Lodge, Br #33 in Duncan, BC. He was also a proud member of the Royal Canadian Legion, Cowichan Br #53 for more than 75 years, participating in local Remembrance Day services and marching in the parade until his early 90's. After Mom passed away, Dad continued to live in the family home for the next 18 years until his health declined and he required more care. Dad loved the Cowichan Valley, and apart from his time in the Navy, Cowichan Station was the only home he'd ever known he'd often referred to it as "Living in Paradise" ... Dear Cliff, Dad, Grandpa, Great-Grandpa ... we all loved you so very much, and will miss you always, especially that Irish twinkle in your eye and that cheeky smile! Cheerio, Pip, Pip, Dad The family would like to extend a very sincere thank you to all the amazing staff members at the Veteran's Memorial Lodge at Broadmead where Dad spent his last 3 years. We were so very grateful for the exceptional kindness and caring support that he received. There will be no service for Dad at this time. We will have a get-together for him at a later date. In lieu of flowers, memorial donations in honour of Cliff may be made to the Parkinson's Society of BC, the Cowichan District Hospital Foundation, the Broadmead Care Society in Victoria, or to any of the numerous youth sports teams in the Cowichan Valley. (Victoria Times Colonist 05 Feb 2022)

 

Ships served in:

HMS RANPURA - For passage to Britain to join the PRINCE DAVID

HMCS PRINCE DAVID

HMCS PRINCE HENRY

HMCS PRINCE ROBERT

HMCS LOCKEPORT

HMCS ONTARIO

HMCS SCOTIAN - For Lower Whitehead Radar Station

HMCS CRESCENT

 

 

 


 

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