Lionel, Paul Demers

It is with great sorrow that we announce the sudden passing of Lionel Paul Demers of Saskatoon on December 6, 2013. He will be sadly missed and well-remembered by family and friends. He was born to William and Laure (Fournier) Demers in Saskatoon on June 9, 1926. Dad started school in North Battleford, SK and when the family moved back to Dinsmore to farm, he attended Star Centre. He had a great sense of humour and loved to play pranks. Growing up, he often played cards at the neighbors and talked of one host who, unknowingly, cooked his own turkey thinking dad had brought it from the Demers house! He often told of how he and his sister Therese spent winter evenings snaring grouse with horse hair. He has always been so creative in solving problems and so talented working with metal. He built a motorcycle, snow plane, can crusher, fishing sleigh with a stove and welded neighbors’ machinery. He spent several winters in logging camps in Manitoba and on Vancouver Island and he played baseball for the King George team. He also drove the school bus, bombadiere, grader and maintained the Queen Elizabeth rink. Dad first met mom (Edith Hjelt) in the post office when she was 11 years old and he told me he knew then he would marry her. On Oct. 23, 1950 they were married in Saskatoon and moved to the farm south of Dinsmore. Dad’s passion for flying led him to get his pilot’s license that same year and he bought his first plane three years later. He was a natural and was serious about every aspect. He flew his trap line, flew neighbors out of town and took nearly everyone from the area for their first flight. Dad, I, and my dog would do a LOW pass on farmers in the field sending them for cover. In 1971 they moved permanently to Fernie, B.C. where he worked for Kaiser Resources for 27 years. He loved Fernie, the mountains, his many friends, fishing, but especially the flying out of the Elko strip which he helped to develop and maintain. He loved the aerobatics and won many aerial competitions. He flew for an amazing 52 years, passionately loving every minute. We were so grateful when they moved to Saskatoon so we could be closer for his last years. He will always be remembered for his generosity in helping others, and how your word and a handshake was everything. Lionel was predeceased by his parents, brothers Maurice and Leonard, his sisters Helene, Annette and Therese. He is survived by his loving wife Edith, daughter Barb, son-in-law Hugh Hedger, cherished grandchildren Travis (Melanie) Hedger and Jody (Blaine) Erickson, his beautiful great granddaughters Ashley, Rachel, Katlyn, Madisyn and Peyton, his sister Yvette, and many caring nieces and nephews and their spouses and all his friends. Thank you to the kindness of all who phoned, sent cards and brought food. Lionel’s quote: “When you’re in the air, there’s nothing that enters your mind but flying”. Fly with the angels, dad, we love and miss you so much!

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