Friday, May 18, 2012


My father who I wrote about a month or so ago belonged to an organisation here called the Canadian Association of Petroleum Landmen. Earlier this week I was invited to their monthly meeting to hear the tribute in his honour. He joined that group back in 1952, coincidentally the year I was born, and was an active member right up to his passing last month. He served as the President of the organisation way back in 1957 and won the Herb Hughes award, an award that is given to a member of the organization that demonstrates outstanding professional stature, community involvement, industry leadership and personal conduct, back in 1982.

Dad’s good friend, Jack Irwin, along with Larry Buzan, told a few stories about his adventures in the land business and pointed out to the crowd that my father was a member of the geological field crew that pointed out the high horizon that was later found to indicate the Leduc discovery well, the well that really brought Canada into the oil business.

I won’t rehash all the stories here, they are more campfire fare, although many of them are pretty entertaining, but one thing that my father did that made him memorable in the CAPL crowd was open every meeting, and Annual Convention with the Canadian National Anthem, and the Star Spangled Banner when they had notable American associates in the crowd. He began that tradition in 1962 and one member remarked in a book that he had negotiated a no-cut contract as he continued to sing at the opening of every meeting until just recently.

At this meeting the national anthem was sung as usual, the flags were there, the mic was ready, but the singer was only there in spirit. The membership sang their hearts out. Dad would have been proud of them. Needless to say an emotional moment for me.



  1. An emotional tribute--an understatement John!

  2. How fitting to be asked to join the gang as they paid tribute to your dad. Classy!

  3. I can tell from your writing just how proud of your Dad you are too, John.

    It must have been a great feeling to hear all those old 'war stories' again. Those kinds of things should never be forgotten.

    I'm glad his friends at his club paid him such a wonderful tribute and invited you to attend.

  4. Its good to know how much your dad's peers thought of him........ And the empty mic clouds up the eyes.... Oh, Canada.........

  5. Your dad was quite a man, and I can see much of it rubbed off on you.

    Thanks for sharing such a wonderful story.

  6. You're a class act...I know your Dad would be proud you attended the event.

  7. What a proud moment this must have been!! Your Dad must have been quite a man!!