James Barry Porteous

        It is with sadness and a great sense of loss that we record the death of James Barry Porteous, Honorary Laird and Founder of Porteous Associates, on Wednesday, April 6, 2005 at Kingston, Ontario in his 89th year. Barry graduated from McGill University in 1938. At the outbreak of war he volunteered with the Field Artillery and went overseas in the spring of 1940. He spent 5 1/2 years with 1st Canadian Division in regimental, Combined Operations and finally staff duties in U.K., Sicily, Italy, and North West Europe, retiring with the rank of Captain. In the fall of 1945 he was honourably discharged from the army and joined the firm of Greenshields, Hodgson, Racine Ltd. in Montreal. He became its President in 1961 and retired in 1970. He then took up genealogy and founded Porteous Associates with a board of four devoted Directors. Elected Laird in 1995, Barry left family research in the capable hands of a Director and Chief Genealogist to build up Porteous Associates in other fields. He wrote “The Porteous Story” (365 pages) with input from many others and designed and registered the Porteous Tartan. He and a Director organized the first International Reunion in September 1990 and planned for every five years thereafter. The Cairn on Hawkshaw Castle site was another of his projects and was built by a Director with help from a dry stone dyker. He encouraged the Australian Newsletter and Porteous Australia, the work of yet another Director. Barry leaves large shoes to fill, however, the path is clear and Associates capable and resolute. At our Reunion in 2000 A.D. a catchy 6/8 Bagpipe March was played for the first time titled “Captain Barry Porteous, Royal Canadian Artillery”.  Composed jointly with one of our Directors, no greater tribute can be imagined and was greatly appreciated.

        On March 29,
2003 Barry retired from active participation with the Associates and Ken Porteous (of Nunthorpe, England) became the new Laird. A further honour took place on 25th December 2003 when the Directors elected Barry as First Honorary Laird, by long distance phone call from Tam Porteous in Edinburgh, for his unremitting efforts in behalf of the Porteous Associates. This was accompanied by a beautiful Edinburgh Cut Glass Decanter and 2 whiskey glasses bearing the Cairn Logo and text of appreciation from Porteous Associates Directors, delivery as arranged with the family by Tam. There was also a beautiful bouquet of cut flowers for his wife, Adele. Truly a Christmas for all time and a gesture greatly appreciated.

        He is survived by his wife Adele, his children Clare, Jamie, and Patricia, and their families, who miss him very much. A devoted father who gave all his children help, inspiration, and encouragement in their own lives. A private funeral service was held in Kingston, Ontario, followed by cremation and burial.


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