Tributes to author who never saw his book published

PUBLISHED: 14:00 25 May 2011

Philip and Pamela Spurr on their wedding day in 1957 at RCAF Station Sea Island near Vancouver, Canada

Philip and Pamela Spurr on their wedding day in 1957 at RCAF Station Sea Island near Vancouver, Canada


THE family of a Weston man who died only weeks before his autobiography was published have paid tribute to a ‘loving’ father.

Philip Spurr began writing his life story a little over a year ago and completed it earlier this year.

The book covers his life in Canada, where he was born in the village of Tarbrook Mines in Nova Scotia, up until he moved to Hazeldene Road in Weston in 1969.

It traces his life in the Royal Canadian Army, where he was posted to the Netherlands during the Second World War, his time at university and subsequent jobs in the sales industry, and when he joined the Royal Canadian Air Force where he met his future wife Pam.

But Philip, whose autobiography is published tomorrow (Fri), died on May 8 in Weston General Hospital, aged 89, after suffering from pneumonia.

His son Michael and daughter-in-law Heather this week paid tribute to Philip.

Heather, aged 48, told the Mercury: “He was quite a character, and eccentric but in a very good way.

“He was very pleased he had the book published as it was a great achievement and he was looking forward to the publication date – it is a shame he couldn’t be here to see it.”

Michael, aged 49, added: “He was a good dad to me even though I didn’t appreciate it at the time.

“For me it is really great for people to read about the life story of an ordinary person from Canada who went through the war, came out of it and built himself a new life.”

Philip and English-born Pam moved to Weston after Pam was diagnosed with liver cancer and they decided to opt for treatment on the NHS.

She died in 1972 but Philip stayed in the town as he considered it to be his new home.

Michael said: “He was very happy in Weston and loved it here.

“He used to go to the library everyday and was very interested in both American and English politics, and he loved going for walks around the town.”

Philip’s funeral was held last Friday at Weston crematorium. He also leaves behind grandchildren Isobel, aged 20, and Jonathan, aged 17.

• My Story From Canada to Weston-super-Mare, published by Stockwell, is priced £5.99 and is available from Amazon.

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