Pierre Bussières

Pierre Bussières

1930 - 2020

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Obituary of Pierre Bussières


February 2, 1930 - September 26, 2020

In the early morning hours of September 26th, 2020, Pierre Bussières, Dad/

Grand-père/Accomplished Gentleman/Pilot and Professor Emeritus, Royal

Military College, Kingston, departed on his final solo flight. His takeoff was

smooth and we sent him off with a tank full of love. His daughter Michèle, son

Mark, daughter-in-law, Nicole, granddaughters Pierre and Jocelyn and grandson

-in-law Fraser were the joy of his life, putting even his love of flying into second


Born at Ste. Ursule, Québec, Pierre's family moved to Montréal when he was 10.

In 1948, RMC re-opened and Pierre was accepted into the first RMC class after

the war. After graduating from RMC in 1952, Pierre spent 14 years in the Royal

Canadian Air Force, working as a Flight Test Engineer, but he always dreamed

of getting behind the controls. During this time, he worked on a number of major

projects including the Avro Arrow and the CF-104 Star Fighter evaluation. He

joined the academic team at RMC in 1962 and, over the next 34 years, was a

living example of the old maxim that, if you love what you do, you will never work

a day in your life. In 1966, Pierre earned the first Master's degree granted by

RMC, and, in 1972, he earned his PhD from Queen's University. Retiring from

RMC in 1996, Pierre continued to teach in a contract role for several years while

taking on a multitude of volunteer roles including teaching basic computer skills

to seniors and doing neighbourhood volunteering with the Heart and Stroke


Retirement also gave him the time to indulge his passion for music and he was a

long time subscriber to classical and other series at the Grand Theatre and later

at the Isabel Bader Centre. It also gave him more time to spend at his home/

cottage near Battersea, which he, along with his former wife, Jean, purchased in

1979. Gardening, building, and fixing things filled his days and kept him busy

and energized. His ability to complete at least one (and often two) crossword

puzzles a day was legendary. He continued to enjoy driving around town, and

further afield, in a series of red Mustangs. Thankfully, his recognition of the

potential loss of his driver's license, and increasing insurance costs, reduced the

number of speeding tickets as he headed past 70! He also enjoyed traveling

with his family, and their multi-generational trip to France in 2015 was a highlight

in his memory book. More recent trips to visit his granddaughters in Vancouver,

and to finally see Bourbon Street in New Orleans, ticked off a number of bucket

list items.

Obtaining his private pilot license at the age of 65, Pierre was finally was able to

satisfy his earlier passion for flight. He logged thousands of kilometers and

spent joy-filled hours planning his summer schedule of Sunday fly-in breakfasts

at airfields across Ontario and Québec. No one would have ever referred to him

as "a morning person" but he had no problem getting out of bed at 6:00 a.m. and

heading to Kingston Airport if there was a plane and a destination in mind. Up

until his 88th birthday, he took a solo flight on his birthday every February 2nd,

and had his picture snapped proudly standing in front of a plane, holding a sign

with his age and a smile that stretched from ear to ear. Pierre's last flight was

January 24th, 2020, and his report of having nailed the landing will be long

remembered by those of us who formed his ground crew.

His family would like to thank the wonderful teams at the GI Clinic at KGH, the

Cancer Care Clinic at KGH, and the remarkable team at the Palliative Care Unit

at Providence Care Hospital. Your care, your compassion, and the time you

gave all of us through this challenging time will be long remembered, and we are

forever grateful.

There will be no funeral services, however, the family is planning a Celebration

of an Amazing Life when COVID-19 restrictions are lifted.

In lieu of flowers, the family has requested that donations be made to the Cordite

Foundation, Royal Military College, Kingston, Ontario. https://www.rmc-cmr.ca/