Our beloved husband, brother, father and grandfather, Derek Victor Browne of St. Albert passed away Sunday, March 3, 2013 after a brief illness.
Derek is survived by his wife of almost 63 years, Dorothy (nee Dryden) and his sister, Joyce Farquhar (Dick) Ward of Nanaimo, B.C. He had a large and close family: 5 children, Vicki (Robert) Anderson, Ken (Donna) Browne, Ginnie (Bill) Fleming, Bev (Jeff) Milne, Scott (Marion) Browne; 14 grandchildren: Bennett and Meredith; Jessica and Nolan; Alexa, Cameron (Amanda), Billie, Matthew (Elaine), and Annie; Jared and Carly; Samantha, Jensen and Joel; and 3 great-grandchildren.
Derek was born in Pemberton near Wigan, Lancashire, England. He immigrated to Canada with his family in 1923 and returned to England in 1936. At the age of 17 he joined the Royal Air Force as a Boy Entrant, 97th Squad at Cranwell, Lincolnshire. When WWII began in 1939, he changed to the 78th squadron and the 77th squadron as an Air Gunner. On June 4, 1940 two weeks after his 19th birthday, he flew on a mission over Germany. On June 5, 1940 his plane was shot down over Ghent, Belgium. He spent the next 5 years as a prisoner of war (POW). He returned to Canada in 1945, eventually settling in Edmonton and building a grocery business. He and Dorothy met in 1949 and married in 1950. They raised their family in St. Albert and retired to Victoria, B.C. in 1988. Derek was an active member of the POW Association of Canada and was a School Trustee from 1960-63 for the newly created St. Albert Protestant Separate School District No. 6. He was a member of the St. Albert Legion, Masonic Balmoral Lodge #185
and OES Pioneer Chapter #135 in St. Albert.
Cremation will take place and a private family service will be held. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Heart and Stroke Foundation, 10985 – 124 Street NW, Edmonton, AB, T5N 0H9.