John Clifford Thornley
With very heavy hearts, but also gratitude for a life well lived, we announce the passing on April 28, 2020 of our dear father Cliff Thornley. Cliff passed away peacefully at his residence at Thomas Hall in Fredericton, New Brunswick. Cliff was predeceased by both his parents, John Clifford Thornley and Catherine (Whitehead). He will be lovingly remembered by his wife of 55 years, Jean (Simmonds), his children Richard (Sandy), Michael (Pamela), Sonya, and Yolanda (Vish), as well as his grandchildren Benjamin, Alexander, Jake, Finn, Lauren and Oscar. He will also be missed by his sister Jane (Steve), his nieces and nephew, Robyn, Sadie, Juliet and Oliver, as well as many other family all in the UK. Also by the many friends he has made all around the world.
Born in Warrington England, he married Jean in 1965 and started a family while attending university. In 1976 he and Jean made the bold decision to move their family to Canada, first to Ontario and then finally to New Brunswick. Cliff loved the outdoors, birdwatching, gardening, fishing, hiking, bee-keeping, recycling, travelling the world, being the quickest blood donor in the family, and his football club, Liverpool FC. He was also a man of the mind. In 1972 he completed his Phd in Materials Engineering from the University of London, and worked for many years as a Metallurgist at the Research and Productivity Council in Fredericton. He loved education so much that he earned a math degree from the University of Waterloo, just "for the fun of it". After retirement, he and Jean spent much of their time travelling with bird watching groups, gardening, and spending time with family. Cliff also volunteered many hours helping kids learn to read after he retired. He was a man of few words (except when helping his family, or the neighbourhood kids, with their homework!).
Dad will be dearly missed by all those that knew him. He had a special place in the hearts of all his far-flung family. "You’ll never walk alone."
If this were not the time of the pandemic, in one final "so Mr. Thornley move" he would have made the donation of his body to the Medical Neuroscience department of Dalhousie University, but that is not available at this time. A remembrance ceremony will be held at a later date.