In Memoriam

Remembering Queen's alumni.

Those Who Have Passed

Sharing memories of friends, faculty, and colleagues - In Memoriam helps you honour those who have recently passed.

  • Robert Kenneth (Bob) Johnston , In Memoriam


    Robert Kenneth (Bob) Johnston 

    – BSc'63

    Bob passed away at a Sydney, Australia, hospital after a lengthy illness. Bob was predeceased by parents, Ken (1967) and Dorothy (Gallaugher) (2007); and brother, Paul (2022). He will be greatly missed by sisters, Janis (Gerald Johnson) of Charlottetown, and Audrey Thompson of Port Perry. Bob was loved and will be missed by his children, Caryl (Rod McNeil) of Oshawa, and Steve (Elise) and Kate (Mark Headon) of Sydney, Australia. Bob was a very proud grandpa and will be lovingly remembered by Nina and Ryan Johnston. He will also be missed by his nieces, nephews, and extended family.

    Bob attended Kenner CVI, Queen’s (electrical engineering) and the University of Alberta (MBA). He enjoyed basketball, football, skiing, sailing, flying, golfing, astronomy, trading futures, and eventually even cricket. He liked to build things, which included: half an airplane, before he moved to Australia, a car, model train layouts, and model planes.

    Rest in peace, Bob.

  • 1980s

    Georgie Rooke (nee Thorne) 

    – BA’82 

    Georgie Rooke passed away on May 13, 2024, following a courageous battle with cancer. A life with Stephen (Artsci’84) of 43 years, loving mother of Michael (Amanda), Amy (Graham), Leah (Tyler), and Meaghan (Navin). Proud Grammy of Logan, Edwin, Amelia, Charlotte, Evelyn, Harvey, and Baby Laine.

  • Dr. Roland Skrastins, In Memoriam


    Dr. Roland Skrastins

    – MD’79

    Peacefully, after a prolonged illness, our beloved Roland passed away on May 21, 2024, at Hennick Bridgepoint Hospital, Toronto, surrounded by his family.

    Roland’s greatest joy in life was his family. He was an amazing and loving husband, best friend and soulmate to Frances, his wife of almost 40 years. Roland was a completely devoted father from the start: soothing colicky infants, while watching west coast Blue Jays games in the middle of the night; chaperoning kindergarten field trips; telling the best bedtime stories; chauffeuring last-minute drives to school; logging many steps walking the dog; and playing endless games of one-on-one basketball or hockey. As his children grew up, he was immensely proud of their accomplishments and successes in life. Family vacations – in particular visiting his sister- and brother-in-law and their family in Australia – were treasured memories. The recent arrivals of his grandchildren – Georgia in 2021 and Noah in 2023 – were especially magical for Roland, who loved them beyond measure.

    Born to immigrant Latvian parents and raised in the east end of Toronto, Roland spoke Latvian first, eventually learning English “in the gutter,” as he described it. He enjoyed a carefree childhood of bike-riding, ball hockey, and cheering on the Maple Leafs. He attended Riverdale Collegiate Institute in Toronto, and obtained his BSc from the University of Toronto. In 1979, Roland completed medical school at Queen’s, followed by post-graduate training in Internal Medicine in Kingston and Respirology in Toronto. Along his life’s journey, Roland acquired many friends, several of whom also became close family friends.

    Roland joined the medical staff at Toronto East General Hospital (now Michael Garron Hospital) as a general internist and respirologist in 1985. Roland was very happy to return to east Toronto to practice medicine, giving back to the community where he was raised. A well-loved and gifted physician, he was known for his kind, caring, and gentle nature, able to quickly put his patients at ease. During his 35 years of practice at TEGH/MGH, Roland was a key contributor to the development of a comprehensive in-patient and out-patient respirology service, including the Progressive Weaning Centre (now the Prolonged-Ventilation Weaning Centre). With his sense of humour and quick wit, Roland never missed an opportunity to provide his colleagues, friends, or family with groan-worthy but clever puns and “dad jokes.”

    Roland will be greatly missed by his wife, Dr. Frances Jamieson; and their children, Peter (Daniela Agnoletto and their daughter Georgia), Emily (Artsci’11, MSc’13) (Daniel Cappell and their son Noah) and Olivia (Max Moffat). Predeceased by his father, Harold Skrastins, and survived by his mother, Rita Skrastins; his sister-in-law, Patricia Fabok (Ivor) of Thirroul, Australia; his nieces, Michelle and Nicola Fabok; and his faithful canine companion, Hudson.  The family is grateful for the wonderful care Roland received throughout his illness.

  • Dr. Edward James (Jim) Woods, In Memoriam


    Dr. Edward James (Jim) Woods

    – BSc’57

    Jim Woods passed away March 18, 2024, in Berlin, Germany, at the age of 87. 

    Jim was the son of the late James Murray Woods and Emiline Grace Woods (nee Playfair). He is survived and greatly missed by his second wife, Dr. Evelyn Weimar-Woods, and his children, Michael Woods (Sc’82) (Heather) and Julie Carr (Daryl). Opa is fondly remembered by his grandchildren, Andrew and Kaitlyn Carr and Clara and Laurel Woods. Jim was predeceased by his son, William (Bill) Woods (BA’82), and his former wife, June Woods-McCormack (BA'57) (nee Patterson), with whom he had his three children.  

    Jim was born Nov. 9, 1936, in Timmins, Ont. He was raised and educated in Haileybury, Ont., where he excelled in school and developed a passion for sports, in particular golf and skiing. He received his BSc degree in Engineering Physics from Queen's and earned a PhD in Physics at Princeton University. Jim did a postdoc in Physics at the University of Alberta, was assistant professor in the Physics Department at the University of Maryland, and returned to Queen’s in 1968 to join the Mathematics Department as a faculty member.  

    Jim’s scientific career was in mathematical physics, focusing on the theory of operator algebras, most notably in collaboration with Huzihiro Araki and their development of Araki-Woods factors used in classifying Von Neumann algebras. This directly influenced the research of the great French mathematician Alain Connes (LLD'79), who became Jim’s good friend and colleague. Jim was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society of Canada in 1987.  

    Jim took early retirement from Queen’s in 1991 and enjoyed a long retirement in Berlin, while still engaging in some mathematics with Evelyn and the mathematics community. Jim enjoyed ice skating and playing hockey there, and took great pleasure golfing into his 80s. Together with Evelyn, he was an avid patron of the Berlin Philharmonic.

  • Norris Hamilton Ready, In Memoriam


    Norris Hamilton Ready 

    – MD’55

    Norris Hamilton Ready passed away in April in Surprise, Arizona, at 93 years old. Norris practiced anesthesia at The Ottawa Civic, Ottawa; John C Lincoln Hospital, Phoenix; and Hillcrest Baptist Hospital, Waco. 

    He was an avid private pilot, golfer, and skier. Norris was a long-time member of the Flying Physicians Association, flying his own plane to many interesting places. After retiring, Norris started woodworking and specialized in wood turning. He was an active member in the Arizona Woodturners Assoc (AWA) and American Association of Woodturners (AAW) and taught wood turning at his local wood club. In 2019, wood turning became too physically demanding, so he started oil painting. 

    Norris is predeceased by his first wife, Susan Belle Blackwell, and survived by his wife of 42 years, Leslie; son, Brian (Sindy); and daughter, Lynn (Steven Silbiger).

  • Susan Mainse (Punkari), In Memoriam


    Susan Elaine Mainse (Punkari) 

    – Rehab’77

    Susan "Sue" Elaine Mainse (nee Punkari) passed away suddenly on Sunday, April 28, 2024, at the age of 69. She will be greatly missed by her beloved husband, Brad; children, Gregory and Jennifer (Brenden); and rescue pup, Kiki.

    Born to Betty Cook and Aimo Punkari on Aug. 12, 1954, in Oshawa, Ont., Sue spent her formative years alongside her brother, Robert. She embarked on her academic journey at Queen’s with her cousin Joan Delavigne (Arts/Ed'73), graduating from the School of Rehabilitation Therapy in 1977. 

    After graduating, she worked as a civilian physiotherapist at the Canadian Forces Base Lahr, Germany. Her professional path led her to Oshawa General Hospital, and later, after marrying the love of her life, Brad, on Sept. 28, 1985, they moved to Ancaster, Ont., to start a family.

    Sue dedicated her life to helping people as a physiotherapist and worked for Hamilton Health Sciences until her retirement in 2009.

    A devoted and proud mother, Sue celebrated Jennifer's achievement of a BComm from McMaster University and Gregory's recent attainment of his P.Eng. designation following his B.Eng from McMaster University.

    Throughout her rich life, Sue pursued numerous passions. She found solace in the pages of books, reveled in the tranquility of cottage life at Steenburg Lake, and immersed herself in the study of languages such as Finnish, German, Swedish, and Icelandic. A devoted lover of dogs, she treasured her companions Pat, Patsy, Honey, Rusty, Dusty, Georgia, and Bella, who await her in heaven. Her departure leaves a profound void, felt deeply by her family, friends, and current beloved pups, Kiki, Lilly, and Henry, who will miss her dearly.

    Sue’s legacy of boundless love, unwavering compassion, and generous spirit will endure, forever illuminating the lives of all fortunate enough to have been touched by her grace.