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Saturday November 4, 2017

Albert Victor Tucker 1923 - 2017
The second principal of Glendon College and University Professor Emeritus of York University, passed away at his home in Toronto on Thursday, October 26, two weeks before his 94th birthday. He was born in East Toronto and after his father passed away when he was four years old, his mother and his two brothers moved to Chatham where they lived on a farm. He later moved back to Toronto where he left school to hold a clerical position to support his family. During the Second World War he served with RCAF ground crew. He was stationed in Britain, France and the Low Countries, and when he returned to Canada, he took advantage of the educational opportunities that he was afforded. He completed secondary school and entered the University of Toronto to study history. After the completion of his M.A., he earned a Ph.D. in British history at Harvard University. Albert taught briefly at the University of Illinois in Urbana before joining the faculty of the University of Western Ontario where he taught until 1966, the year Dean of Arts, John T. Saywell, recruited him to become a member of the York University History department. The first principal of Glendon, Escott Reid, and the head of the History department, Edgar McInnis, persuaded Tucker to stay at Glendon instead of moving with most of the historians to the new campus at Keele and Steeles. He succeeded McInnis in 1968 and Reid at the end of 1969, continuing as head of History until 1973 while serving as principal until 1975. Tucker's early scholarly work was in nineteenth-century British military history, but he soon expanded his interests and in1972 saw the appearance of his book, 'A History of English Civilization.' His interests shifted to Canadian business history, leading to the publication of, 'Steam into Wilderness: Ontario Northland Railway 1902-1962 (1978).' He then prepared a history of Labatt's Breweries, but internal corporate politics blocked its publication. He taught at Glendon College and in the graduate department of History as well as in the joint York-U of T program in Victorian Studies until his retirement in 1993. In 1988 he was appointed University Professor in recognition of his stellar services to York. From 1997 to 2007 he served as president of The York University Retirees' Association. Tucker never married; he is survived by a niece, Constance Dykes (Greg), and a nephew, John Tucker (Ingrid), grand-nieces and grand-nephews, Colin, Kevin, Christina and Stephanie. He is remembered as an inspiring teacher, a helpful colleague, and a gentle human being who gave generously of his time and money to York and Glendon. He established scholarships, made donations to the Leslie Frost Library, and initiated and funded the annual John Holmes Memorial Lecture at Glendon as well the Albert Tucker Visiting Speakers' Series of the Glendon History department. Albert will be deeply missed but still continues his passion to help others.

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