The Twine Loft – May 2023

Passed On: William Cox — Shelburne, N.S. shipbuilder

Cox, 105, passed away on March 23, 2023, in Halifax, N.S. He was born in Shelburne on October 6, 1917. A fifth-generation master shipbuilder, Cox took an interest in the trade at a young age. From age 10, his after-school job was helping his father lay down the lines of ships in the drafting loft of the old mill. By 1940, he began to serve Canada’s war effort by building motor torpedo boats in Montreal and served in the navy as a shipwright from 1942–1945. After the war, Cox and his brother George joined their father in establishing the family shipbuilding firm, Harley S. Cox and Sons Ltd. Even after retirement, his passion for shipbuilding continued as late as 2008, when he oversaw the construction of two Loyalist landing longboats as well as working as a consultant on a replica of a boat he built many years ago, the fishing schooner Robertson II in 2017.


Passed On: Paul Basha — Burton, N.B. mariner

Basha, 74, passed away at home on March 7, 2023. He was born on January 24, 1949, in Charlottetown, P.E.I. Basha served in the Royal Canadian Navy as a radio operator.


Passed On: Douglas Smith — Saulnierville Station, N.S. truck driver

Smith, 77, passed away on March 18, 2023, in Halifax, N.S. He was born in Saulnierville Station on October 30, 1945. Smith was employed as a truck driver for Comeau’s Sea Foods for 40 years.


Passed On: Roy Deveau — Church Point, N.S. fisherman

Deveau, 75, passed away at home on March 11, 2023. He was born in Saulnierville on August 4, 1947. Deveau was a fisherman for most of his working life.


Passed On: Thomas Falls — Greenville, N.S. fisherman

Falls, 59, passed away on February 24, 2023, in Yarmouth, N.S. He was born in Yarmouth on June 10, 1963. He was a fisherman for Kespuwick Resources Inc. for 22 years, before which he worked as a clammer and a wormer.


Passed On: Alfred Saulnier — Meteghan Station, N.S. dock worker

Saulnier, 86, passed away on March 11, 2023, in Yarmouth, N.S. He was born on July 27, 1936, in St. Benoni, N.S. Saulnier was a carpenter by trade and spent a decade working at the Halifax dockyard. He sometimes volunteered to crawl into submarine torpedo tubes where others dared not enter.


Passed On: Howard Metcalfe — Conception Bay South, N.L. Coast Guard

Metcalfe, 62, passed away on March 21, 2023. He was born on April 14, 1960. He spent his career in the Canadian Coast Guard.


Passed On: Norman Doucette — Yarmouth, N.S. shipbuilder

Doucette, 76, passed away on March 8, 2023, in Yarmouth. He was born on July 26, 1946, in Cape St. Mary’s, N.S. He started his carpentry career working at Roy M. Doucette Boat Building in his youth.


Passed On: Clarence Williams — Port Mouton, N.S. fisherman

Williams, 83, passed away on March 18, 2023, in Liverpool, N.S. He was born in Port Mouton in 1939. In his younger years, he travelled to British Columbia to work on the railroad but returned within a month because working on the water was Williams’ life. He worked as a fisherman from age 15 onwards and was once lost at sea while on a swordfishing trip in heavy fog off the Grand Banks.


Passed On: Murray Ford — Yarmouth, N.S. coast guard

Ford, 76, passed away on March 23, 2023. He was born in Upper Amherst Cove, N.L. on December 15, 1946. He spent 27 years with the Canadian Coast Guard, retiring as a quartermaster on the William E. Foster.


Passed On: Frank Townsend — Nova Scotia fisherman

Townsend, 80, passed away on March 12, 2023, in Yarmouth, N.S. He was born on August 1, 1942. He was a carpenter and fisherman all of his working life and was involved in various fishing organizations.


Passed On: Paul Farmer — Birchtown, N.S. fisherman

Farmer, 76, passed away on March 1, 2023, in Shelburne, N.S. He was born on July 13, 1946, in Shelburne. He began fishing at age 16.


Passed On: Albert Smith — East Lake Ainslie, N.S. mariner

Smith, 99, passed away on March 14, 2023, in Evanston, N.S. He was born on April 15, 1923, in Hull, England. Smith always worked around fish and the sea, starting at age 14 when he began working at the Hull Fish Market. At age 16, he served in the war effort in the British Merchant Navy as a gunner and a cook. In 1982, he re-enlisted. His profession took him to almost every country on Earth.

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