It is with profound sadness that we announce the passing of Gordon Dale of Richmond, BC. Gordon, aged 69, is predeceased by his parents Albert Dale and Margaret Chinn.
Gord is greatly missed by his wife, Sheryll Dale. He leaves behind his stepmother Suzanne Dale, sisters Nadine Ellis and Karen Collins and a large family of brothers and sisters in-law and nieces and nephews.
Gord was born in Ontario, where he spent his youth and early adulthood and from where he still has a connection to family and childhood friends. He graduated from Centennial College as an Aircraft Maintenance Engineer. He left Ontario around 1980 to pursue his career as an AME, first with Page Petroleum in Calgary and then in Victoria where he worked for Victoria Air Maintenance. It was during this time that he worked on “warbirds” and had the opportunity to travel to various airshows such as Reno Air races and the Abbotsford Airshow as a crew member.
After meeting his wife, Sheryll, through mutual friends, Gord moved to Richmond. BC. He was hired as an apprentice in rotary wing at Capital helicopters. He completed what he called “his ticket to the bush” and spent the next few years with terms in northern BC and Canada. He worked out of locations such as Norman Wells, Fort Simpson, Fort Liard, Fort Smith as well as Burns Lake, Vanderhoof and Prince George.
Gord returned locally and was with Vancouver Helicopters. He enjoyed this company’s camaraderie plus the variety of assignments. The helicopters he worked on included those for the Grouse Mountain helicopter rides, powerline checks, the R22 traffic helicopter and the part he enjoyed most, movie work. Gord loved the variety and the challenge of getting a job done safely and successfully.
Gord next was employed by Heli jet for eight years. This kept him close to home, but the shift hours were difficult.
Gord completed a short international tour when he travelled to Nigeria for Canadian Helicopters International in the summer of 2005. He had a lot of interesting experiences in the 3 months he was there, which he often reflected on.
In September 2005, Gord was hired at LAS where he worked until his retirement in 2020. During this time, he was proud to say that he was part of a team that introduced the Agusta Westland AW139 helicopter to London Air and Canada.
Gord was extremely knowledgeable in all facets of his work and his leisure activities. He went 150% into everything he pursued. He represented Canada in Shooting sports at the 1999 World Cup in Munich, Germany. He loved fishing, photography, RC flying and since COVID, has taken an interest in philately.
Anyone who met Gord would appreciate his knowledge and interest in a wide variety of topics. He was a teacher to young AME’s and a mentor to his nephews and nieces.
Gord was diagnosed with Interstitial pulmonary fibrosis (IPF) in 2018. Since then, it has been a long road, but he rarely complained, and he never gave up and kept a positive attitude until the very end.
To remember Gord, we are holding a celebration of life in September. Email: Gordcelebration23@gmail.com for more details. Flowers are gratefully declined. Donations in Gord’s name can be made to Dr. Christopher Ryerson, Research, Providence Foundation, St Paul’s Hospital, 1081 Burrard Street, Vancouver, BC V6Z 1Y6, to aid in a cure for this relentless disease.
“Death is the golden key that opens the palace of eternity.” John Milton.
Sheryll on behalf of my family we pass on our sincere condolences to you, we cannot understand the void left behind. I had the pleasure of working with Gord at LAS for almost 4 years and he made the hangar floor exciting most days. God made Gord out of cow hide, kerosene, pine needles, and transmission fluid. He, Big G, mixed that with an eye for beauty in Sheryll and photography, a desire for gun powder, and beartrap for his technical aviation craft, general everyday mechanical knowledge, firearms and world history. His hands were like two 10-pound plates fused together and all of his being packed into a 50-gallon drum. Gord hung out with the likes of General Chuck Yeager at the Reno races, and probably gambled with Ian Fleming. He never talked about those special memories, unless you were able to coax him towards them. We got to watch Sophie for the Dales while they were away in Hawaii and like all Westcoasters, they adored Hawaii. While in Vancouver, I never actually ever found out where they lived...like a secret bunker somewhere. Gord came to see himself as a minority when he learned that Richmond had a larger foreign ethnicity group than the recorded White Anglo Saxon Protestant population. Needless to say this did not provide any comedy relief for the HR department of his employer. I used to joke about Gord’s requirement to take me on his next hunting trip because I would have to haul whatever he shot out of the woods for him. Although we were both mouth breathers, he was built a lil closer to the ground, but when he put the crosshairs on a target his accuracy would be measured in 1000ths of inches. Although we moved out of province we did get together for lunch with Gord and Sheryll when Faith had surgeries at BCCH. We recently relocated to Panama, but Gord and I were able to talk almost every other week. He was no idiot, Gord understood the gravity of his situation and I half-joked with him about “never being too late” to come to Jesus. My last text to Gord talked about Mathew 20:1-20, a parable where workers are hired in a vineyard and regardless of the time spent laboring, everyone receives the same pay and that God so loved him, enough to send Jesus to die on a cross for him. Not to condemn us but to save us. Finally, I told him that I love him. I believe someday I will see lil g, a hui hou kakou my friend.
My deepest condolences Sheryll, family & the many friends. Gord was a professional with that typical aviation wit. We crossed paths at HeliJet and LAS over the years. RIP …..
Gordon was a big presence at our little club, his knowledge in equipment and firearms was paramount, he let me try out his competition Pardini with custom grips but unfortunately did not fit my hand properly and I was nowhere near his accuracy. Gordon was a friendly person always ready to share a story and got warmed up when talking about his trips to Italy at the Augusta helicopter factory in Italy and the great meals he shared with his team while there. We will miss him but his memories will live on with all of us. R.I.P dear Gordon. We will take it from here. Beppe
Dear Sheryll and Family, So sorry to learn of Gord's passing. Gord was generous with his time and knowledge at The MRSA Club. It was a privilege to know him. My wife Meranda and I send our prayers and condolences.
Shocked to hear of Gord’s passing. Well, as a younger cousin, I always called him Gordie. He was always the coolest cousin (sorry David Chinn), fixing all things, from motorcycles to helicopters. I remember he had model planes and helicopters hanging from the ceiling of his bedroom in Toronto. Very knowledgeable of all the specs and nerdy details. He pursued his dream to go out west and do what he really wanted to do. He embraced the fantastic B.C. lifestyle that us Ontarians admire. Way to go, Gord! You lived your life to the fullest. It’s a message to us all. We’ll miss you. But you’ll always be around, y’know? Rest in peace.
What the hey, Gord ! Sheryll, we were so shocked to learn about this very sad news. We have nothing but great memories of Gord. I will never forget that little sideward smirk, the first time we met in Victoria, and every time afterward, whenever Gord wanted to add a little extra reaction to the conversation. What a guy. We’re so fortunate that he was part of our lives. Cheerz Gord. Take care Sheryll. Connie & Brian
My deepest condolences, Sheryll. I will always treasure my time working with Gord at Helijet and LAS, and being able to call him a good friend. Rest In Peace, Gord.
Thinking of you, Sheryll, at this very sad time. Cherish the memories. Alex
So sorry to receive the bad news of the passing of Gord, my thoughts with Sheryll and family. I always enjoyed our time working together at Helijet. RIP Gord.
My deepest condolences Sheryll, I was so saddened to here of Gord's passing. We had talked about his condition a number of times but I didn't realize how severe it had become. From childhood to the last time I saw Gord, he could always put a smile on my face and make me laugh. He was such an interesting character. I've always been so impressed with his accomplishments in everything he took on. Gord was my favorite cousin (please don't tell the others) and I always looked forward to reconnecting whenever I had the opportunity to travel to the Vancouver area. I too, will miss him and am deeply saddened loosing him from our lives Sincerely David Chinn
It is with profound sadness for us to know of the recent loss of our friend, Gord Dale. We extend our heartfelt sympathy to Sheryll and family. Since 2008 we have had the best “pub group” times together with Gord and Sheryll. Gord’s many interests, gifted intelligence, and wit, were apparent in any conversations. He was a fine man and will be forever in our hearts. Dale and Blaine Bailey
Sheryll I am so sorry to hear your sad and unexpected news. I you are descriptive words of Gord’s life, work, and hobbies are so touching. He was indeed a very positive person with many interests and skills who had also lead a very interesting life. He shared many stories during our conversations. He will be missed.
Dear Sheryll, our deepest sympathies go out to you. Gord left us too soon, he will be missed. Gary met him once, but left a large impression on him. We regret that we are so far away and we’re not able to spend more time with you both.