George William Sparling, BA’47, MA’50, BEd'55
September 17, 1919 – May 22, 2012.
George was born in Edam, SK, and grew up in North Battleford. His engineering studies at Saskatoon were interrupted by WWII. During the war he volunteered and was first stationed in Victoria, where he met and married Sybil and, shortly after the marriage, was shipped off to Europe as an infantry officer. After the war they settled in Vancouver, where George completed his BA and MA in mathematics (thesis: A Generalization of the First Plucker Formula), followed by a BEd.
During his career he taught at Burnaby South, and Delbrook and Carson Graham in North Vancouver. He also taught at UBC’s commerce school. During this time he co‑authored a Euclidean geometry textbook, served on the board of Highland’s United Church, was on the executive of the BC Mathematics Teachers Association, played tuba for a variety of bands, and was, along with wife Sybil, an avid sailor. Perhaps the highlight of his career was when his mathematics contest team came in first in BC. In 1990 George and Sybil moved to Qualicum Beach, where he quickly became active in a number of community organizations.
A few years ago he took up bridge. He also enjoyed the game of Upwards, and it was a rare occasion for anyone else to win. Sybil passed on in 2008. George is survived by his son, Stephen, BSc’75; daughters Margaret Fisher (Jack) and Johanne Sutton (Jim); six grandchildren; two great‑grandchildren; his sister, Marion Wheaton; and his cousin, Jerry Pladsen.