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Gaffney, Terence J.

Passed on: Monday, December 31, 2018
Service Date: Saturday, January 12, 2019
Visitation: 3 to 5pm

Terence Joseph Gaffney was born in Sudbury, Ontario, 2 January 1926, to loving parents Michael Gaffney and Anna Scully. He was soon followed by Jim (Myrna Ball), predeceased 2005, and Joanna (Louis Sirois). A joyful childhood spent up the rocks behind Drinkwater Street in Sudbury, and paddling and blueberry picking at the camp on Lake Ramsey, was followed by a first summer job at one of his father’s catering camps at Dalton Mills that launched him into young manhood. A bumpy first run at academia was followed by five years spent in the bush surveying, mapping, and in geophysical exploration, preparing for an eventual return to McGill and mining engineering. After teaching at the University of Sudbury/Laurentian, Terry accepted the Douglas Fellowship to return to McGill for graduate studies in rock mechanics. Michigan Tech recruited Terry for seven years spent teaching in Houghton, Michigan, followed by a return to Sudbury in 1969 to join the original faculty of Cambrian College. Terry was a patient and inspiring teacher, whose love of mathematics was shared with technical and mining students as well as with the math-averse, guiding the latter to success and perhaps even enjoyment of their mandatory math courses. Married on 23 August 1958 to the most wonderful and beautiful woman that fate ever allowed, Kathleen Pitman of Yarmouth, Nova Scotia, a graduate of St. Michael’s Hospital School of Nursing, six marvellous children arrived in short order: Jim (Cindy Baird), Colleen, Jennifer, M’Liz (Bruce Westaway), Paula (Bruce MacKay), and Brian (Heather Remington). Early family adventures included motor trips to the Maritimes, canoe trips through the Killarney Mountains, and skiing at Espanola, Onaping, Quebec, and Ellicottville. Later, the centre of summer activities moved to Strawberry Island Lighthouse on the North Channel, which became the workshop where multigenerational bonds were forged. With the children well on their way, Terry and Kay were free to visit their friends around the continent, and around the world. Memorable trips started with Ireland and included South Africa, New Zealand and Australia, San Miguel de Allende in Mexico, France, Portugal, and Italy, with a special love for Florence and Venice. Eventually, 15 grandchildren (The XV) arrived over a period of as many years: Kathleen (Dan Sparks), Sean, Ella (Brady Middaugh), Austyn, Joanna (Blaine Smit), Terry (Amber Beattie), Connor, Calum, Anna, M’Liz, Charlie, Grace, Ailish, Erin, and Sophie, all of whom have been a source of great pride and pleasure. Terry considered himself more than fortunate in a lifetime of friendships, starting from Sudbury High School (class of 1943), McGill University (particularly Douglas Hall 1945-49), and McGill Mining Engineering (class of 1957). This continued with fellow teachers and students from the earliest days of Engineering at the University of Sudbury/Laurentian, Mining Engineering Department at Michigan Technological University, and a satisfying 27 years at Cambrian College. In later years, Terry became a friend to his friends’ children, and to many of his children’s friends. An amateur passion for art and graphic design resulted in the original coat of arms for Laurentian University; a family tartan registered with the Scottish Tartan Authority; countless wedding invitations, poems, and diplomas graced with Terry’s calligraphy; and custom logos for business ventures of friends and family. Terry’s enthusiasm for maintaining a photographic record was legendary, and appreciated by beneficiaries of both his massive archive of snapshots, and his skill with Photoshop. More scientific pursuits included considerable time and effort expended analyzing the differences between innumerable smoky scotches and elegant gins. My name was Terry Gaffney, and I approved this message. Over and out. Terry died at home on Monday, 31 December 2018, surrounded by family. Terry’s friends and family are welcome at a celebration of his life that will be hosted at the University Club at Laurentian University, on Saturday, 12 January 2019, from 3 to 5 p.m. In lieu of flowers, donations to the hospice in Sudbury ( or to your own community’s hospice would be greatly appreciated.