Obituaries & Death Notices
BAUER, Arnold John ('AJ')
Published:Feb 10, 2018
Event Date:Feb 01, 2018
BAUER, Arnold John ('AJ') "Oh! I have slipped the surly bonds of Earth... Put out my hand and touched the face of God." It is with deep sadness that we announce the death of Group Captain (Ret'd) Arnold John ('AJ') Bauer, BA, CD, on February 1, 2018 at the age of 93 in Hamilton General Hospital. Born in Morse, Saskatchewan on December 13, 1924, the only son of the late Rev. Walter Daniel Bauer and Ora Bertha (née Ehling) Bauer, AJ is survived by his loving wife of 71 years, Elizabeth ('Bette') Frame Bruce (née Harris) Bauer; by his three devoted daughters: Susan (Michael) Newman, Nancy Blair and Shirley (Bill) Hearn; by six grandchildren; by five great-grandchildren; and by his sisters: Elda Gordon-Matthews, Shirley (Bob) Otterman, Ruth Smith, and Catherine Mattson; he is also survived by many nieces, nephews and countless friends. Besides his parents, AJ was predeceased by his sister, Isabel Cornell. AJ was fascinated by flying from the time he was nine years old, when he witnessed the Italian Formation Flight of 24 'flying boats' flying over Desboro, Ontario, enroute to the 1933 Chicago World Fair and thought to himself, "That's the life for me!". At 18 in December 1942, he submitted his military enlistment papers in Hamilton. On January 6, 1943, he officially became a member of the Royal Canadian Air Force. Successfully completing his flight training courses in April 1943, AJ was pinned with his pilot training 'wings' and assigned as a flight instructor for the British Commonwealth Air Training Plan. When that ended in 1945, he was transferred to Summerside, PEI where he met Bette Harris, his 'Elizabeth, my Queen'. AJ and Bette were married in Hamilton, then settled in London, Ontario where their three daughters were born. His RCAF service took him to Ontario, New Brunswick, Resolute Bay as well as to such incredible places abroad as Germany, France, and the Sinai, culminating in London, England as Canada's Air Defence Attaché. Having settled in his beloved cottage, 'Roundel', near Owen Sound, he chaired a committee dedicated to restoring First World War Flying Ace Billy Bishop's family home. As well, he served as Vice President, then President, of the RCAF Association. Along with being a staunch Hamilton Tiger Cats supporter, AJ was a life-long Toronto Maple Leafs fan and a die-hard Toronto Blue Jays fan. AJ's family would like to thank all staff at Macassa Lodge for their constant, outstanding care, their heartfelt compassion and their generous support. As AJ donated his body to McMaster for medical research, there will be no funeral. A celebration of his life will be held later at 447 Wing in Mount Hope. To honour his memory, donations may be made to the Billy Bishop Home & Museum or to the Canadian Warplane Heritage Museum.
Category: Obituaries & Death Notices
Newspaper(s): Hamilton Spectator
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