Obituary of Alfred Gardiner Mair
It is with heavy hearts that the family of Alfred Gardiner Mair of Hantsport, announces his passing on Wednesday, February 15, 2023, at the age of 88.
Alfred (known as “Alfie” to his friends), was born October 7, 1934 in the small fishing village of Portsoy, Scotland and was raised in Macduff and Aberdeen. He often reminisced about his childhood adventures such as swimming in the chilly waters of Macduff’s Tarlair Swimming Pool, and climbing cliffs to find bird’s eggs.
At age 15, after finishing school, Alfred took on an apprenticeship as a Turner and Fitter at John M Henderson-Kings Works in Aberdeen where he learned how to manufacture and assemble industrial tools and machine components from metal, a skill that was helpful in his 45-year career in the merchant navy. He started as 7th engineer with Ben Line and worked his way up to chief engineer with a steam and motor ticket. He travelled the world on oil tankers and cargo vessels to the Far East, through the Panama Canal, to Australia and along coastal Europe and beyond. He told us a story of playing a soccer match with shipmates in Antarctica, while King penguins watched “along the sidelines” with fascination. It was on his travels to Hamburg, Germany, where he met his beloved wife of 65 years, Ingeborg (Frank). In 1972 Alfred emigrated with his family to Nova Scotia to join the Fundy Gypsum Company. He later worked in the Great Lakes, with Halco Co Ltd., Misener, Upper Lakes Shipping Co.; retiring at age 65 with Algoma.
We will fondly remember Dad/Grampy for his Doric Scottish sayings, limericks, quick wit and his soft heart for the “little birdies” and nature. He had excellent hand eye coordination and was a “dab hand” at darts, pool and table tennis. He enjoyed his daily crossword and was an avid sports fan, who loved his “fitba” (soccer), golf, curling and his Blue Jays and Leafs.
Alfred is survived by his wife, Ingeborg; son, Michael (May Tam), Red Deer, Alberta; daughters, Diane Mair, Kentville; Sandy Mair-Dodman (Don Dodman), Bridgewater; sister, Irene Brown, Whitehill, England; grandsons, Alex Dodman (Melanie Halliday), Jared Dodman and Greg Keirstead; and nieces and nephews.
Freddy, as he was lovingly referred to by his siblings, was the youngest of the late Alexander and Catherine (Wood) Mair’s eight children: Alexander, Magnus, Isabella, Margaret, William, James and Irene. Cheerio… Alfred… Alfie… Dad… Uncle… Grampy. You will be greatly missed, but we will always hold you close, within our hearts.
Arrangements for cremation have been entrusted to DeMont Family Funeral Home & Cremation Service, 419 Albert St., Windsor (902-798-8317). A graveside service will be held in Riverbank Cemetery, Hantsport, at a later date. In lieu of flowers, donations in memory of Alfred may be made to Hants Community Hospital Foundation, 89 Payzant Dr., Windsor, NS B0N 2T0; Macduff Lifeboat Station, Bankhead, Macduff, Aberdeenshire, Scotland, AB44 1RD; RNLI Lifeboats at: rnli.org/support-us ; Friends of Tarlair Pool (restoration project) at: friendsoftarlair.co.uk; or a charity of one’s choice. Messages of condolence may be sent to the family by visiting: www.demontfamilyfuneralhome.ca