Gérard Raymond Lavoie, P.Eng.
The family of Gérard (Gerry) Raymond Lavoie announce his peaceful passing on September 20, 2020, in Fredericton, NB, at the age of 87. A proud Canadian, New Brunswicker and "North Shore Boy" – in that order – Gerry was born in the town of Dalhousie, NB, on July 10, 1933, to the late Antonio (Tony) and Eveline (LeBlanc) Lavoie.
Gerry is survived by his loving and devoted wife of 62 years, Anne (née Kieley); cherished daughters Giselle MacPherson (Bob) of Dorn Ridge, NB, and Patricia Lavoie (Cleve O’Donnell) of Lincoln, NB; beloved grandson Nicholas Léger (Lindsay Bradbury) and adored great-grandchildren Wilhelm and Eris of Harvey, NB; beloved sisters Marie-Marthe (Martha) McDonald, of Port Hawkesbury, NS, Georgette Martin, of Parksville, BC, and Rachel Wisteard, of Foymount, ON, as well as several nieces, nephews and cousins.
In addition to his parents, Gerry was predeceased by infant daughter Marie and brother Paul.
Roman Catholic by faith and a member of St. Anne’s Church at French Village as of late, Gerry’s devout faith proved to be both an anchor and guide to him throughout his life, with daily prayer proving to be of great comfort to him. He had an "evergreen" list of relatives and friends for whom he kept in his prayers.
Gerry’s thirst for knowledge never ceased throughout life. His formal education began at Our Lady of Sacred Heart Convent (Couvent Nôtre-Dame-du-Sacré-Coeur), Dalhousie (1939-1946); followed by his attendance at Sacred Heart University (Université du Sacré-Coeur), Bathurst (1946-1954), where he completed a Bachelor of Arts (incl. "classical course"); and the University of New Brunswick (UNB) (1954-1960), where he obtained a Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering.
To support himself through university, Gerry worked as a hotel porter and bartender; jobs in construction; Officer Cadet; and various jobs and projects with International Paper, Dominion Engineering, and Atlas Copco. Upon graduation from UNB, Gerry worked briefly with John Deere as a service engineer, thereafter beginning what proved to be a long and distinguished career as a Mechanical Engineer with Canadian National Railways (CNR) in both Moncton (1961-1982) and Montréal (1982-1994). With the CNR, he worked in the Equipment Department (Facilities Repair/Service), the CN Terminal (Draftsman), and the Shops (Works Engineer) in Moncton; while in Montréal, he worked at the Pointe Saint-Charles Shop (Works Engineer) and the CNR Headquarters (System Mechanical Engineer). Once retired and equipped with a wealth of knowledge and expertise in the rail industry, Gerry then established his own consulting business (1994-1998). Gerry was a member of the Associations of Professional Engineers of New Brunswick, Ontario and Manitoba; l’Ordre des ingénieurs du Québec; as well as the American Railway Engineering Association. He wore his iron ring with great pride!
With a passion for lifelong learning and a belief in the importance of giving back to his community, Gerry took up membership and leadership roles in such organizations as the Junior Chamber of Commerce, Toastmasters International, the Royal Canadian Air Cadets, and the Boys and Girls Clubs of Canada while living in Moncton, NB. During his early retirement years, Gerry became a volunteer with the War Veterans of Ste-Anne-de-Bellevue, Québec.
At an early age under the tutelage of his grandfather LeBlanc, a master craftsman, Gerry took an interest in woodworking, a hobby that stayed with him throughout his life. He took great pleasure passing his creations on to those he cared about. Everything he did, he did with precision and care – much in keeping with the way approached life.
Travel for work and pleasure took Gerry and Anne to such places as France, England, Ireland, Scotland, Italy, Germany, Switzerland, Hawaii, Japan, Iran, Venezuela, Barbados as well as various parts of Canada and the US. Many a friend Gerry made throughout his life while living in Dalhousie, Fredericton, Moncton and Montréal and traveling the globe.
Of all his accomplishments, most important to Gerry was the love and devotion he had for his family.
A special thanks goes out to those who helped support Gerry in his time of need, in particular Gerry’s "Angel" Mary Stairs, his personal care attendant of 12 years. Family would also like to acknowledge the compassionate care provided by staff of the Emergency Department and the Palliative Care Unit at the Dr. Everett Chalmers Hospital in Fredericton. Giselle and Patricia are also thankful for the devotion of their Mom, Gerry’s "Archangel", in attending to their Dad’s daily needs while ensuring a quality of life at home. A special mention also goes out to lifetime friends Bob and Helen McKinley of Moncton.
In keeping with Gerry’s wishes, there will be no visitation. A Celebration of Gerry’s Life for family and invited guests will be held at a later date.
For those who wish, donations may be made in Gerry’s memory towards the Restoration of Historic St. Anne’s Church Cemetery at French Village, NB or a charity of your choice.