MACNEILL, Ian - Surrounded by his family at Victoria Hospital, Ian Bruce MacNeill, peacefully on Wednesday, January 16, 2019. Beloved husband of 66 years to Colleen Patricia MacNeill. Loving father of James (Catherine deceased), Laurie (Jason) and Roderick. Devoted grandfather to David (Dayna), Patrick (Jeannie), Laura (Brendon), Anne-Marie (Brian), Duncan and Angus. Proud great-grandfather to Charlotte, Ian and Eric. Son of the late Bruce and Nellie MacNeill. Brother of Greg (Margaret), Rand (Sharon), and the late Graeme (Mary). Survived by many nieces and nephews. Born December 12, 1931 in Regina, Saskatchewan, he lived in several small towns where his mother was a school teacher. After completing high school at Campion College he attended Normal School in Moose Jaw. His first job as a teacher was at Avonlea where he met his future wife Pat at the local skating rink. He and Pat decided to move to Saskatoon where he taught high school mathematics for many years and completed a Bachelor of Arts from the University of Saskatchewan. Having decided to pursue an academic career, Ian obtained a Master of Science from Queen’s University and a PhD in Statistics from Stanford University. He joined the Department of Mathematics at the University of Toronto, and later moved to the University of Western Ontario in 1971 as an Associate Professor in the Applied Mathematics department. At Western, he established the Department of Statistics and Actuarial Science and served as its Chair from 1980 to 1992. During his outstanding career as a Statistician, he published over 100 papers, served as founding co-editor of Environmetrics, was elected Fellow of the American Statistical Association and the Institute of Mathematical Statistics, and received the Distinguished Achievement Medal of the American Statistical Association in Statistics and the Environment. Following his retirement, Ian maintained his connections to the statistics community by pursuing his own research and providing guidance to former colleagues and students. Above all he was a teacher, and in addition to his many academic achievements he leaves behind a legacy of the education of many young minds that he has helped guide over the years, whether it was a child learning to read in a rural Saskatchewan schoolhouse or working with a PhD candidate.
In retirement, Ian spent many hours in his garden at his home in London, and looked forward to spending the winter months in Florida where he made many friends. Mostly he enjoyed spending time with family and in particular his children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren.
A memorial reception will be held at Harris Funeral Home, 220 St. James Street at Richmond on Saturday, January 19th from 11:00AM to 1:00PM.
In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions to Western University would be appreciated.
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