The Rev. Major Donald Howson passed away Just a few weeks shy of his 105th birthday, James Donald Lochhead Howson peacefully shuffled off his mortal coil on August 26th with his daughter, Alix, by his side. Don’s was a life that spanned world wars and saw unimaginable technological changes. (The fact that he purchased his first television in order to watch the funeral of Winston Churchill in 1965 says much about Don, as his attachment to his English roots ran very deep.) Toward the end of his life, he was assisted in using an iPad to FaceTime with his son, Geoff, indicating some (grudging) acceptance of the changes occurring around him. Born on October 14th, 1914, in Peterborough, Ontario, Don attended Trinity College, Toronto, in the late 1930s. Following graduation, he sailed to Scotland to attend the University of St. Andrews but, due to the increasing tensions in Europe, was requested by his father to return home. Always a dutiful son, he did so and enrolled at Presbyterian College, Montreal, from which he graduated in 1940. He was ordained in the Presbyterian Church that year, accepting a call to St. Andrew’s Presbyterian Church in Fredericton before taking a leave of absence in 1944 to join the Canadian Navy in which he served until the end of WWII. Following the war, Don returned to Trinity College where he earned an MA in Psychology, and then made his way back to St. Andrews, Fredericton, where he served as minister until 1950. When the Korean War broke out, Don joined the Royal Canadian Army as a chaplain, serving from 1951-53. At the cessation of hostilities in Korea, Don remained in the Army, serving in various postings in Europe and Canada until 1968. In 1953, Don married Mary Archbold at St. Peter’s on the Rock on Stoney Lake. Don’s family had been vacationing on Stoney since before his birth, and the cottage at Stone Leigh remained an incredibly important and beloved part of his life. After leaving the Army (in protest over the unification of the Canadian armed forces), Don moved his family back to Peterborough where he became a clinical psychologist at the hospital until he hit the mandatory retirement age in 1979. He remained active, becoming a consulting psychologist for the Northumberland Board of Education until he turned 80, serving on the Peterborough Board of Education, and participating in St. Paul’s Presbyterian Church as well as various other groups that spoke to him, including the Order of St. Lazarus, the United Empire Loyalist Association, the Monarchist League of Canada, the Royal Canadian Legion, the Korean War Veterans Association, and the Naval Club. Loving the history of Peterborough, Don was involved in the restoration of the Cenotaph and efforts to preserve important buildings in the area. Don and Mary purchased 100 acres of land in Keene in 1972 with thoughts of building a home there, overlooking Rice Lake. With Mary’s death in 1982, those plans were never realized, but Don spent hundreds of hours on the property, planting trees, grooming paths, trimming lilacs, and enjoying taking people on tours of the land. Such was his love of Glenburn that he joined forces with the Kawartha Land Trust to ensure that the acreage would remain relatively untouched in the future. While Don lived long enough to lose his peers to death, he had an amazing ability to cultivate friendships with people much younger than himself, and this no doubt was a factor in his long and contented life, as was the joy he took in spending time with his grandchildren and great grandchildren. While human, like all of us, and with his own struggles, it still seems safe to say that we will not again see his like. Don is survived by his son, Geoff, and daughter, Alix, as well as their spouses, seven grandchildren, five step-grandchildren, and four great grandchildren. Those wishing to commemorate Don’s life may do so by making a donation to Trinity College (University of Toronto) or to a charity of their choosing. A funeral will take place at the Anglican Church of St. John the Evangelist in Peterborough on Sunday, October 13th, at 2:00 p.m., with reception following in the church hall. Online condolences may be made at