” Oh, I have slipped the surly bonds of earth”
Nixon-It is with disbelief and profound sadness that we announce the passing of our beloved Alan Nixon on July 18/21 at the age of 67. Now reunited with his father Benjamin (1963), stepfather Sam (1989) and his mother Joan (2018). Survived by wife and soulmate Gayle (nee Sawyer), his brother John and sister-in-law Luiza. Alan’s Canadian family comprised of stepson Mark Klompstra (Isabel) and their family (Liam, Tristan, Alexis, Joshua, Lucian), stepdaughter Jacqueline Klompstra (Ross) and their family Caitlin, Carissa, Bonne and Marlie, stepson Matt Klompstra (Krista) and their family Audrey, Tianna, Seth and Tesse and finally, his two canine companions Wenn and Hope. Alan was born 1953 in Farnborough England. The many facets of Alan’s life were formed by the experiences of his childhood. After moving north when his father died, his education would initially see him attend Hartlepool Grammar School from 1964 to 1971, but it was the post war aviation remnants that surrounded his hometown that instilled into Alan a deep love for aviation. The nearby RAF Blackbushe airstation and the Royal Aircraft Establishment in Farnborough planted a seed into a young mind that sought to be actively involved with aviation during his adult life. Endeavoring to be a commercial pilot he suffered a set back when it was discovered that he suffered from hayfever. This denied him the medical clearance needed to advance to pilot school. Undaunted, Alan participated in an apprenticeship program at Filton in Bristol England in 1971 that would see him involved with the closing developments of the Concorde SST. He then completed his aeronautical engineering degree (1972-1975) at the Imperial College in London. He was one of the few who passed with first class honors in his graduating class. He was invited by the Imperial College to complete his MSC degree and was successful in doing so in the 1975-1976 academic term. Building on his strong educational background, Alan started his professional career In Newcastle, England working for a subcontractor assigned to Vickers Munitions completing R&D research for the military tank division. Then in a twist of fate and outside of his desire to stay involved with aviation, he was recruited by ICI and worked 20 years for them at the Billingham, Avonmouth and Heysham facilities where his operational knowledge set the foundation for career advancement. At this point Alan took a large leap of faith and immigrated to Canada to manage the Terra Facility (former CIL plant) in Courtright, Ontario, Canada. After 14 years he ended his stint as a plant manager and continued to work as a freelance consultant to Koch Industries, the US EPA department and ultimately even providing technical reviews for the US Department of Justice. Alan was never one to become involved with sports. Aside from some outings to Scotland with his brother to explore rock climbing and winter mountaineering, his world seemed to be more focused on mentorship. This sincere desire to help develop and invest in the future can be traced throughout his life. Alan always supported the gleaning of experience from his senior operators as a necessary investment in his junior employees. In his personal life Alan was a “Big Brother” and found it immensely satisfying to impart life experiences to those who could benefit from his knowledge. Alan and Gayle shared the thirst for adventure and that set into play many travelling experiences. His work would see them travel throughout North America and parts of Europe, but personal vacations set the standard of exploring many unique places around the globe and often via a range of transportation. From horseback to Concorde and from elephants to the Queen Mary II, there are scrapbooks of adventures well lived. Taiwan, India, Peru, Northwest Passage, the Greek Islands, Tenerife, Greenland, Iceland and Scandinavia- just scratch the surface. A celebration of life will be held at a later date, and will be announced when all the details can be completed. In lieu of flowers, please make donations to St. Joseph’s Hospice or the Humane Society. In closing, the family asks that you recognise the frailty of life and do not dwell on what might have been, but rather to honor Alan’s memory by focusing on what was during his time of life. He was loved, respected and will be missed by all who knew him. Such are the measures of a life well lived. In recognition of Alan’s love of aviation and by electing to open with the first line of “High Flight” it is only fitting to close with a personalized version of the last line of that poem. Alan, it is your time to ” Put out your hand and touch the face of God “. Arrangements entrusted to Knight Funeral Home, 588 St. Clair Parkway, Corunna. Messages and condolences may be left online at knightfuneralhome.ca Knight 519-862-2845
9 thoughts on “Alan Nixon”
Alan was an incredibly good guy in so many ways. He was kind, wise, thoughtful, deeply caring, honest, and would always, always do the right thing. He always looking for ways to help people. Alan was my friend and mentor and I trusted him without question. I appreciated his humour, sharp wit and intelligence immensely but above all, and this is hard to explain in words, but he had a wholeness with himself, and everyone around him. He was a rare treasure, a great guy and an “old soul” as some would say. I will see him again someday. Our deepest condolences to all his family and extended family.
Gayle and family, Jack and I are so sorry.’
I hold you in my heart.
Jack & Janis
As a kid I always thought Alan was so studious and knowledgeable. I often wondered if I had anything tangible to offer in a conversation with him at the age I was but he never made me feel out of place.
He was a kind man + I’m disappointed I won’t have the opportunity to see him again.
Thinking of the family + sending my love.
We are sorry for your loss. Alan will be greatly missed.
Love Bill, Taya, Ellie and Evie Stirling.
I was so sorry to learn of Alan’s passing; he will be sorely missed by many. Looking back, I feel grateful for all of the time that I knew him. I will miss his quick wit and intelligent conversation. I know he has touched many lives.
Gayle and family, please accept my heartfelt condolences.
Jackie, Matt, Mark and families
We were so sorry to hear of the loss of your step father. He sounded like an extraordinary man who impacted many. Our thoughts are with you and your especially your mom.
Our condolences to Gayle and family. We enjoyed an evening of storytelling years ago and have fond memories of warm hospitality.
Brad and Beth Gray
My condolences to Gayle and the rest of the family. I remember Alan very fondly and always will. He was a great person and a great laugh. Rest In Peace “Bruce.”
So sorry to hear of Alan’s passing. May he rest in peace. Our heartfelt condolences to the entire family.