Barry John Phillips

Honourary Lieutenant Colonel

Honourary Lieutenant Colonel Barry John Phillips, a very devoted & loving military man has passed. Born on Mackenzie Island ON, 1942 then moving to Winnipeg at an early age.

He attended St. John’s-Ravenscourt School while enduring many floods.

With the death of his father, John Alfred, the remaining family left Winnipeg for his beloved island paradise of Victoria. Raised by his Mother Joan Mary Phillips and Grandmother Mary Seely he attended University school. A keen athlete playing hard at rugby, cricket and running, but his main love was that of being a drum major in the University School Cadet Corps.

Joining the Canadian Scottish Regiment began a devout military career.

While attending camp Borden he married his beloved Elinor Hunter.

His many postings included Germany, Golan Heights, Ottawa, Victoria, Edmonton, Kingston, Toronto, England, London, Croatia, & Haiti.

Once retired from the military he continued to work in the field of Emergency Preparedness. A soldier to the end, his most recent position, as Honourary Lieutenant Colonel at the 39 Service Battalion was a source of great pride.

A sharp and interesting man who loved sail racing who had many stories to tell.

Dec 30thwas a cold day to draw his last breath at sea.

He is survived by is wife Elinor, son Mark, daughter Kimberly MacLaurin, son in law Jason MacLaurin, grand children Toria and Brooke.

Open service from 2:00 to 4:00 pm, to be held Saturday, January 9th at L. Gen Ashton Armoury 724 Vanalman Ave. Victoria BC.

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Condolence Messages

  1. Barry, you were the epitome of an officer and gentleman. I count myself fortunate to have known you and am forever grateful for the guidance you provided me as the CO of 39 Service Battalion.

    End of mission, good shooting, stand down your duty is done. Fair winds and following seas my friend

  2. My sincere condolences Kim to you and your family.

  3. We are very sad about the passing of your dad, Kim. Our thoughts are with you and your family during this very difficult time. He seemed like such a wonderful person.

  4. Laura Metcalfe-MacDonell :

    Hello Kim,
    Brent called to tell me about your Dad’s passing. I am sure you have great memories especially of your recent vacation with him. My sincere condolences to you and your family.

  5. Al Currie (Jumpmaster) :

    On behalf of all members of Drop Zone Vancouver Island, may I express our deepest condolences to Elinor and family. We bid farewell to our Drop Zone Controller, who was our first leader; fair winds and soft landings, til we meet again on the big drop zone.

  6. Cheryl McGuire :

    Elinor our thoughts are with you at this most difficult time. Barry seemed larger than life and we so enjoyed his wit and humour. I know you, Mark, Kimberly, Jason and the wee ones are trying to make sense of this terrible loss. Please accept our sincere condolences.
    RIP Barry.

  7. Elinor,Kim and family, Really shocked and sadden when June called to tell me of the passing of Barry. He was a great man- Hold dear his memories, he’ll always be with you and pull you all through the coming days and months Don McDonald.

  8. E Ellsworth Wall ( AL) :

    I was saddened to hear of Barry’s passing as a young private , Captain B J Phillips was my Platoon Commander…Fort Chambly, Soest Germany 1968 Delta Platoon, this was the beginning of the 4 Service Battalion era gone to soon may he RIP…

  9. Shelley Taylor :

    Kim, I remember you telling me about the influence your dad had on who you are today. You so clearly identified the traits in him that you respected and strived for in yourself the most. After having only met him a few brief times myself, I can say that I saw in him what you did. He had a youthful spirit, a calming energy and little spark of fun, particularly around Brooke and Toria. I ran in to him one day when he came to pick them up from school and he was just so happy to be there. From my family to yours, our heartfelt condolences.

  10. Barry! RIP you where one of the finest Officers I served under during my career in the Military and my condolences to your family.

  11. Rollie Keith, Pres., Bornewest :

    On behalf of the members of Bornewest, may I offer our sincere condolences and sympathy to you, Elinor, and your family on the loss of Barry.
    His many contributions to the service of Bornewest and DZVI will long be remembered and appreciated.

  12. Richard Cowling :

    My deepest sympathy to you, Elinor, and the family. Barry was a great soldier and a very good friend. He will be alive in the hearts of many.

  13. Paul and Olga Patrick :

    To Elinor and family, Olga and I want to extend our sincere sympathy for the loss of Dear Barry. I worked for Barry upon arrival at CFB Esquimalt in 1977. Thereafter, we kept in touch as he soldiered on. He was a dedicated soldier, a man with remarkable wit, which made him a great story teller. I shall miss him at our annual Corps get together. He left us doing his passion of sailing and if it was his time, to go with no pain was a blessing. Good bye old friend RIP. Your service is done.

  14. Adele Donaldson :

    To Elinor and family. Barry’s wonderful sense of life will be memory for all of us to cherish. A quote I found on a gravestone in Alaska a few years ago expresses a sentiment that many will feel of Barry’s passing:
    If tears could build a stairway
    And memories a lane
    I’d walk right up to heaven
    And bring you home again

  15. A good soldier who will be missed by his fellow jumpers. Fair winds and safe landing.

  16. To Eleanor and family, my sincere condolences. In Germany, Barry was Pl. Comd of Delta Platoon and I was a peon in Alpha Pl., Barry always took great delight in calling me a mini trucker as he was in the 5 ton section. He never tired of seeking me out at the reunions to remind me of that! He was a great soldier and I look forward to seeing him again on the advance party when it’s my time. You could well say of Barry: “been there, done that, outta here.

  17. Ken and lorraine Martin :

    Elinor: Our condolences to you and your family. Remembering Barry as my OC at the Airborne School in Edmonton he was a great leader and was very instrumental in convincing me to apply for my commission. May God send His blessings on you and your family during this sad time. Ken and Lorraine Martin

  18. Sonja and I would like to extend our sincere condolences and heartfelt sympathy in this time of your loss. Barry will always be remembered by many. Rest In Peace Barry.

  19. Barry and Margaret Popejoy :

    Margaret and I send you and your family our deepest condolences at this very difficult time. Barry was the ultimate soldier, husband and father, he will be sadly missed by all. Stand down soldier, your watch is over. RIP

  20. Sincere condolences and deep sympathy to family and friends. Rest in peace.

  21. Please accept sincere condolences and deep sympathy to family and friends on the loss of a fine man. May he rest in peace.

  22. Barry was a dedicated soldier and fierce supporter of all things airborne which we both believed in. He was instrumental in the establishment and growth of DZVI that still benefits all its members. May he rest in peace.

  23. Barry was a wonderful person to be around and to serve with. He will certainly be missed. My sympathies to Elinor and his family.

  24. Captain (ret) Bill Donaldson, CD RCASC :

    Barry was a great comrade and colleague that I much admired. More importantly he was a good friend, and I will miss his tales and good humour. We were to meet this month to reminisce for a bit, but alas, not to be.
    To Elinor and family I offer sympathy and help in any way I can.

  25. Herb and Marianne Pitts :

    Elinor and Family. May comfort come to you, knowing so many of us care. Apart from the card already sent, I want to more publicly express my appreciation and admiration for Barry’s many contributions to units, organizations and associations he served. He was a “soldier’s soldier”, highly regarded, and he will be missed by all of us fortunate enough to have served with him. “Rest easy. Stand in the door and Have a Good One! Soft landings.” Airborne! Herb and Marianne Pitts

  26. My sincere condolences to Elinor and family. He was a much admired soldier who will be very much missed by his many friends in the Corps and the Canadian Forces. Rest in peace, Barry.

  27. Gary Del Villano :

    Above all his fine characteristics, a quiet gentleman is the characteristic I will always remember. Rest in Peace, my friend.

  28. Eileen Grant, Manager OBEP :

    We at the Oak Bay Emergency Program were very sorry to hear of Barry’s passing. The program is indebted to his passion and commitment to Emergency Preparedness and to his community. He left us a strong and rich foundation on which to continue to build our Program. Thank you for sharing Barry with us. May you take comfort in knowing that his legacy to the Oak Bay community lives on and is thriving.

  29. My sincere condolences to Elinor and family. I have not seen Barry for years, but his passing nevertheless hurts. One always enjoyed meeting up with Barry because he lifted your spirits and always shared a laugh. Although I was one of the first Log Tn trained Truckers, I wore the RCASC badge and Barry treated me as if I were one of the Service Corps family – something I really, really appreciated. I believe he’s now entertaining fellow soldiers in Heaven, and will forever. If I make it there, I hope to catch some of the many, many tales I missed.

  30. Barry was an outstanding soldier, a fine Trucker and a true friend. He will be seriously missed by the many who have known him and served with him. Deep condolences to his family and friends. He will be remembered.

  31. Malcolm (Mal) Kay :

    Like so many of Barry’s friends in London, I was saddened to learn of his death.
    As his predecessor in command of 22 Svc. Bn., I was confident of his abilities and happy to have him take over the unit in 1988. To Elinor and family, my most sincere sympathy.

  32. Barry and I, as fellow Army Logisticians, shared the approximately 18 months of back- to- back Army staff college Kingston and then Command and Staff College Toronto (1983-1984).

    Known as “BJ” to all of us during that academic time, I readily recall that he could be counted on, when spirits were flagging in the midst of something such as a tedious assignment on strategizing how best to combat the mythical Fantasian Forces, to toss out some humorous remark or put forth a zinger of a question to flummox the Directing Staff and thus lighten the mood.

    Barry and I crossed paths infrequently after that; the last being on his visit to Ottawa some 3 years or so ago at which time we reminisced and swapped stories about our shared passion – sailing. He extended an open invitation to join him on his boat. Now that won’t happen. We’d have had a grand time, I’ve no doubt!

    To Barry’s family; I hope you draw comfort in knowing that Barry (“BJ”), was, and will for years to come, be fondly remembered as ‘one of the Good Guys’.

    Fair winds, Barry.

  33. George and Wanda Zvanitajs :

    Dear Elinor and family. We were shocked and saddened to hear of Barry`s untimely passing. Barry was a fine Officer and a good friend. His love of life and positive personality rubbed of on many of us and I have many fond memories of sharing a drink and a story whenever our paths crossed throughout our careers . We have lost a truly professional soldier, a loving husband and father and an exemplary Canadian.
    Please accept our condolences and sympathy as you face the difficult days ahead.

  34. André Desjardins :

    To Elinor and Family
    Please accept my deepest sympathy.
    Once you know Barry, one will never forget him.
    God bless you and your family

  35. Jack and Jane harris :

    Barry was a friend and fellow soldier for almost 40 years. His good humour, love of sailing and devotion to all things airborne and “trucky” was only surpassed by his love and devotion to Elinor, Mark, Kim and her family. Our condolences go out to them after the loss of such a vibrant individual. He is gone too soon and too suddenly. Jane and I will miss him.

  36. So many wonderful memories of a true friend and colleague – particularly when we occupied single officers quarters together in Borden and he devoted all his waking hours in pursuing the beautiful Elinor! I was privileged to be there at the beginning of this” Love story”. My deepest and most sincere condolences to Elinor and her family.

  37. Barry replaced me in Damascus in 1985 and in the short handover time we had together I got to know him as a truly professional officer and a kind and humorous man. A fine soldier who will be greatly missed by family and friends. My deepest condolences.

  38. David Stinson :

    Working for, and with, Barry in Ottawa in 1991-93 was a career experience and then some! His deep knowledge of logistics and excellent humour were great aids to my learning in that time – I owed him much for the lessons. He will be remembered well by all who knew him. Deep condolences.

  39. Deepest condolences to you Elinor and the family. It does seem such a long time ago that Barry and I, Cadet Drummer and Piper, played the lament at the Cadet Tatoo in Vernon in 1957. We had many a laugh, and brew, over the retelling of that event. A Can Scot and a Seaforth who actually got along…amazing! As times passes memories often fade but my memories of Barry remain fresh; he was that kind of guy.

  40. Served in delta pl. in Germany 68-70 Barry was our pl. commander find man and officer he will be missed by all that knew him my deepest condolences to his family RIP Barry.

  41. Richard Waring :

    Barry was my CO at 22 (London) Service Battalion. He taught me and the rest of the Battalion well and he left a legacy that included BJ’s Revenge, an annual physical competition that continued on after his departure.

  42. Captain(N) Wilf Lund, OMM, CD, PhD, RCN (Ret’d)
    University School Class of 1959
    Barry and I were at US together. I had the pleasure to play rugby with him and so enjoyed watching Barry fly like the wind with the ball. He was fearless in every aspect of the game. And, on the parade square he was always one of the smartest cadets. We both retired to Oak Bay after our years in the service and were reunited, meeting from time to time to exchange stories. Barry was a man of impeccable character with many skills that he used willingly for the betterment of his community and the Canadian army. My condolences.

  43. Dear Elinor and family, I am grateful that Paul Paone was able to present my words at the service. I wish I could have been there but circumstances prevented this as you know. I will miss Barry terribly but I am so very glad that we crossed paths a few years ago. Between then and now I grew to greatly respect him for his wit, his integrity and his incredible ability to connect with people, whether they were soldiers or civilians. I am so very sad he is gone but ever so blessed to have been his friend. Please accept our deepest condolences.

  44. Elinor, Our condolences to you and the family. When I saw Barry in Ottawa last year he was still full of lie and enjoying it. I reminded him of the day I saw him at Namao just after he had his failed parachute incident and as usual he re-told the story with all hands and arms flying. We go back to our single days in Borden where we had great fun and comradeship. BJ was a professional and will be missed. John & LInda Stuart

  45. Pat and Jerry Pitzul :

    Pat and I were in the market today in Ottawa enjoying the sun and a coffee when a couple walked by that reminded us of our friends Barry and Elinor long ago having moved West but never from our hearts and minds. It caused us to look them up and we were shocked to find that Barry had passed. Barry, that strong, straight forward lover of life and all things military was no longer with us, no longer guarding the west coast. How sad. To Elinor, Kim and Mark your loss is great and we offer you our sincerest condolences.

  46. David Fitz-Gibbon :

    I am just today informed of BJ’s death. It is so sad to know that he is gone. What a wonderful boss, colleague and inspiration. I will not forget him.

    Sincerest condolence to his family.

    David Fitz-Gibbon
    Dumaguete, Philippines

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