Obituary of Laurence J. "Laurie" Beavis
Passed away at the St. Thomas Elgin General Hospital on February 13, 2023, at the age of 95. He is survived by a daughter, Jennifer Anne Beavis of St. Thomas, a son, Bruce Laurence Beavis, his wife Kathleen, grand-daughter Katherine of Chicago, and several nieces and nephews in England. Helen, his wife of 63 years, died in March 2013, and a daughter, Alison Davina Helen passed away in July 2020. Born in Ripon, Yorkshire, UK, he was the son of Francis Joseph and Teresa Gertrude Beavis.
A journalist by profession, Laurie was publisher and general manager of the St. Thomas Times-Journal, retiring after 37 years with the newspaper.
A British Army veteran, Laurie was commissioned into the West Yorkshire Regiment in 1946 and served with the British War Crimes Commission investigating Japanese war crimes in Singapore and Burma. As a reservist, he was recalled in 1950 for the Korean War and attached to the Royal Northumberland Fusiliers where he served as an infantry platoon commander during the 1951 Battle of the Imjin.
Active in the community, Laurie was a past president of the Canadian Red Cross, St. Thomas Branch, past president of the Rotary Club and an honorary life member of Rotary International. Laurie was a prominent participant in United Way and was a member of the founding committee of St. Thomas-Elgin Crime Stoppers. A strong supporter of Scouts Canada, Laurie served as a unit leader as well as Elgin District Commissioner and Assistant Provincial commissioner, Ontario. He was instrumental in the establishment of Camp Timken, the Elgin District Scout Reserve near Iona.
In retirement, he was a volunteer member of the Elgin Military Museum. Besides travel with his family, he enjoyed woodworking and wood carving and was the founder of the St. Thomas Wood Carver’s Club.
In keeping with his wishes, cremation has taken place. A service to celebrate Laurie’s life will be held at 1:00 p.m. on Monday, February 20, 2023 at St. Hilda’s-St. Luke’s Anglican Church, 185 Elm St., St. Thomas.
Memorial donations to the Thames Valley Education Foundation re: Alison Beavis – Class of 1980 Memorial Award, an annual scholarship, will be gratefully acknowledged. In order for a notification of your donation to be given to the family, please contact the funeral home at 519-631-1160.
Donations can be made online at:
or by mail:
Thames Valley Education Foundation
re: Alison Beavis - Class of 1980 Memorial Award
1250 Dundas Street
Proudly independently owned and operated by
three generations of the Sifton Family since 1926.
Phone: (519) 631-1160
Funeral Establishment Operator Class -1
Licence # 412
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