SERVICE EXCELLENCE when you need it most.
Passed away peacefully, in his sleep on February 7, 2018 at the age of 80 years. Adored husband of Patricia Rose (nee Woodruff) for 57 years. Loving father of Jim Ferguson and wife Catherine of London, Carolyn Laton and husband Dan of Petrolia. Loving and proud papa of Mikaela, Ross, Chantal, and Julia. Dear brother of Trudy Chaika and husband John, Linda Ferguson and Jim, and his late brother, Ed Ferguson, and surviving wife Ann. Missed by his eight nieces and nephews.
James was born and grew up on a farm in Landis, Saskatchewan and often recounted stories of the challenges and rewards of growing up in mid-20th century rural Saskatchewan. Leaving the farm to see the world, he joined the RCAF as a navigator and was stationed in France, where he met and married Patricia.
After he left the RCAF, James joined the Montreal office of Clarkson Gordon in 1965 as a tax manager, becoming a Chartered Accountant in 1970. Later in 1974, the family moved to the Windsor area when he joined Hiram Walker and Sons as a tax manager, eventually rising through the corporate ranks to become Senior V.P., Treasurer and C.F.O. After Allied Lyons (later Allied Domecq) acquired Hiram Walker, he worked from the UK offices of Allied Domecq as VP Corporate Strategy, circling the globe for business opportunities and acquisitions. His travels took him frequently to all continents except Antarctica. He made a point to learn and respect local customs and cultures of the places he visited, although karaoke in Asia was a definite challenge for him. Ultimately, however, he was happy to leave the airports and jetlag behind when he retired in 1998.
Throughout and despite his busy career, James was devoted to his family and fully involved in the lives of his children and later his grandchildren, and in his last years, to caring for Patricia.
Both before and after retirement, James and Patricia travelled extensively, with many trips to Europe and special memories of cruises, particularly to Alaska and the Baltic. He became a keen gardener (with a special love for Delphiniums and Dahlias) and woodworker. James loved puttering around his home on the Detroit River or reading his favourite books under the maple tree by the river. He also enjoyed driving around Windsor in Jennie, his 1948 International pick-up truck.
If you so wish, donations made to the Salvation Army or the Windsor Downtown Mission in James’ memory would be welcome.