Those of you who read the latest issue of VERITAS will have noticed that our classmate George Mainer was listed as SOS 30 September 00.  Since I had had no direct contact with George since graduation, and had only been informed indirectly on a number of occasions that George had died several times over in curious undefined conditions, I decided to follow up on the announcement.

Today I spoke with George's cousin, Col (ret'd) Grogan, somewhat older that George and not an ex-cadet, who had grown up with George in Winnipeg and remained in touch with him over the years.  Col Grogan, who knew that George was very proud of his RMC connection, went to the trouble of finding out how to contact the RMC Club, hence the notice in VERITAS.  This is what he told me (only slightly embellished!):

After graduation, George went to Dalhousie and took law for a year to complete his degree.  He was then posted to Germany as an infantry officer with 1RCR.  While there, some numbskull officer decided that George should learn to drive a motorcycle.  Well, you all remember just how agile and coordinated George was, especially with mechanical things!  The inevitable happened:  George pranged his vehicle and himself.  The resulting neck injuries were so serious that he was invalided back to Canada and given a desk job at the Directorate of Military Intelligence (DMI).  This, of
course, is where he should have been all along.

One morning he did not show up for work at DMI and an alert officer decided to investigate, as he knew George lived alone.  He found George unconscious in the shower of his apartment with the water running - fortunately the plug was not in the tub.  Another serious head injury, undoubtedly aided and abetted by the first one.  The combined effect of these injuries dictated the rest of George's life.

After leaving the Army, he went to Ryerson in Toronto and obtained a teaching certificate, and then went to Sutton ,ON to teach at a high school there.  Several years later his physical condition had deteriorated to such an extent that he was obliged to cease work and accept disability insurance for his many remaining years.  He moved to Toronto after he stopped teaching and lived alone in a comfortable apartment, where he died suddenly about a year and a half ago.  George never married.

George had a very active mind and was constantly studying and writing.  He kept an extensive and detailed log as well as composing songs.  In fact, in his last year he received an honourable mention for a song that he had submitted to a competition somewhere in the US.  Unfortunately, as the years rolled by, along with his precarious physical state, his mind suffered intermittently as well as.

There will be a memorial service for George in North Bay, where his brother Bill lives, later this summer.  I shall notify Murray Copeland when I know the date in the hope that he will be able to attend and represent the Class of 57.

One of the commemorative stones we are having installed as part of our Class of 57 Memorial Project under the Arch Beautification Project will bear George's name.

I shall write an obituary for publication in VERITAS based on the information above.  If any of you have any pertinent information, please let me know soon.

Return to Home Page