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Ernie Hodgson



Ernie Hodgson died peacefully on Thursday, July 5, 2012 at the age of 88 years.

He and his twin brother, Jack, were born in Edmonton to Margaret Letitia (McAfee) and Harvey Harrison Hodgson, and grew up in the Avonmore district, attending King Edward Park and Ritchie schools. After graduation from Strathcona High School, Ernie attended Normal School and began teaching in a one-room school in northern Alberta at the age of 18. He then served overseas with the RCAF, and developed a strong dislike of mutton. Ernie attended the University of Alberta after the war, earned a B.Ed. in 1948, and returned to teaching, which became a life-long passion.

Ernie married Dorothy Margaret Folk in 1951, and they were blessed with four wonderful daughters. In the meantime, Ernie earned an M.Ed. in 1949 and a PhD. in 1964. His career as an educator steadily advanced – he was successively a school superintendent, high school inspector, senior administrator with Alberta Education and ultimately, a professor in the Faculty of Education at the University of Alberta from 1966 to his retirement in 1988. He specialized in the relationship of politics and law to the administration of education, and this led to his election as an Edmonton Public School Board trustee from 1980 to 1983 – he was Chairman for the first year of his term. He was a long-time member of the Edmonton Education Society, and the Canadian Education Association awarded him a life membership in 1989, recognizing his years of service. Ernie addressed groups of educators across Canada over the years, often spoke to the media on controversial issues in education, and was a well-respected expert witness in some high-profile court cases. Through it all, he was a true gentleman, an example of integrity, with a strong sense of what was just and fair.

A friend remarked that Ernie was a delight to listen to, because he always had exactly the right way of phrasing his ideas; he also possessed a vast vocabulary and a marvelously clear, to-the-point style of writing. His religious faith was a guiding principle in his life, and the Hodgson family were long-time members of the United Church. Among Ernie’s favourite things in life were family events, a hearty laugh and a good cup of tea.

Ernie was predeceased by his father Harvey (1942); brother Jack (1943); mother Margaret (1980); and his sister Audrey and brother-in-law Sinclair Reikie (2000), and his beloved wife Dorothy (2009). He is survived by his daughters Mary-Beryl Long, Frances Hodgson, Audrey Hodgson-Ward (George) and Ellen Hodgson; grandchildren Kati and Simon Belanger and Jamie Keltie (Rhonda); great grandchildren Christopher, Kamryn and Georgia. He will also be missed by nieces Margaret Thomson (Don) and Lynn Tessari (Rick); as well as many other relatives, friends and colleagues. The family particularly wished to thank the staff at the Allen Gray Continuing Care Centre for the warm, respectful care they provided “the professor”, especially during his last illness.

A Memorial Service for Ernie Hodgson will take place at 2:00 p.m. on Thursday, July 12, 2012 at Knox-Metropolitan United Church, 8307 – 109 Street, Edmonton.

Donations to the Bissell Centre or the Allen Gray Continuing Care Centre would be appreciated in lieu of flowers.

In Loving Memory of
Ernie Hodgson
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Funeral Service:
Memorial Service
Thursday, July 12, 2012
2:00 PM
Knox-Metropolitan United Church

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