Maj Barry Douglas Blair, CD (Ret’d)
We regret to advise of the death of Major Barry Douglas Blair, CD (Ret’d), peacefully on 3 August 2021 at the Perley & Rideau Veterans' Health Centre in Ottawa ON at age 90 years.
Barry was a member of the Royal Military College Class of 1954. As a junior Royal Canadian Engineer officer, he was selected to undergo pilot training to become part of the developing Army Aviation that considered assigning one RCE pilot to each of the field squadrons for the purpose of reconnaissance and liaison. After completing his L-19 fixed wing aircraft course in Rivers MB and the CH-112 Hiller helicopter training at Camp Wolters in Texas, Barry was posted to Montreal QC to command a Works Detachment instead of being posted to an army flying unit. He took every opportunity to maintain and develop his flying abilities throughout his career but the concept of pilots in the field squadrons was abandoned before he could be employed in this role.
After Montreal, Barry’s next posting was to the Royal Canadian School of Military Engineering in Chilliwack BC as Adjutant. He next attended the Army Staff College course in Kingston ON (1963 - 65) and, after graduating, Barry was appointed Commanding Officer of 2 Field Squadron in Camp Gagetown NB.
Barry retired from the Canadian Forces in 1966 to work in the construction engineering area in the Public Service with the Federal Department of Transport. He worked in the Department of Transport until 1989 when he retired as Director General Air Navigation Systems. Barry then established his own firm, Blair Consulting Services Inc., that provided consulting services specializing in aviation. His work involved being a senior advisor to the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development in matters of air navigation system and airports in several countries in Europe.
A private burial service and celebration of life will take place with the immediate family at a later date. In lieu of flowers, donations to the Perley & Rideau Foundation would be appreciated. Online condolences can be sent to Beechwood Military Cemetery.