Thursday, June 01, 2006

Remembering Jock.....

Jock Wilkinson
March 26, 1920 - May 22, 2006

The World is missing one of the good ones. My old neighbour from Grand Forks, Jock Wilkinson passed away May 22 at the age of 86. When I was a kid, I always thought Jock was just another old guy who lived across the street. But as I got older, I found out there was a whole lot more to the man than I had ever thought.

He was a World War II vet who saw action for 5 years as a signal man, starting in Italy and ending in Germany. He was there when Grand Forks opened it's first airport, and told me last summer how amazed he was by the Ford Tri-Motor that had flown in for the day. And if that wasn't enough we had this conversation in front of the Grand Forks Museum where there is a picture of a Ford Tri-Motor and a kid named Jock.

It may seem trivial to many of you, but the most impressive thing Jock ever did was have the ability to always know the difference between myself and my brother Jim. Aside from family members and close friends who see us everyday, many people have a tendencey to get Jim and I confused with each other. Not Jock, not ever. Being a younger brother and wanting to be known as his own person, well, that always meant a lot to me... Thanks Jock.

7 comments:

Anonymous said...

That's a nice story Jim, thanks for sharing it.

- Roy

Anonymous said...

Too funny Roy.
I remember Jock. I only met him a couple of times but I found him to be a true gentleman. I don't know whether it is because my dad was in the army at the end of WWII, but I have nothing but the greatest of respect for veterans. He will be missed.
Clive

Rex Harris said...

Damn, Roy already stole my joke . . .

Seriously though - nice tribute, Gregor. I lost my grandfather back in January, also a WWII vet. I don't have a brother, but my Papa always could always tell the difference between me and my sister - that, too meant a lot to me.

Chris Keogh said...

Heh . . . Roy, you crack me up.

Yes, the old Meat Draw at the Legion won't be quite the same without Jock sitting in his usual spot against the wall at the table by the door.

Nice article Gregg.

Anonymous said...

Greg, thank your Mum for giving me your 'blog' info. Branch 59 RCL won't be the same without him. To my memory he never missed any groups bake sales, to 'stock up' for his home over the past decades. Also, when he lived across from the Court House, I can recall Mel Ringheim 'dropping in' often, no doubt for a 'social drink'?? Jock also had beautiful gladiola in that garden.
Take care of yourself, Greg.
Kay

Gregg Anderson said...

Thanks for coming to the Blog Kay, and thanks for your words about Jock!

Georgina said...

Gregg - thanks for writing the tribute to Jock. Jock did have an amazing name recall. I have watched him greet 6 or 7 people in succession and know every one of their names and some little bit of information to ask them about themselves. He will be truly missed. He also had the ability to discern a "real" apple pie.
Georgina