In memory of those who have Crossed the Bar


Clifford Alden Anton


Telegraphist, RCNVR


Born: 05 Jun 1924, Eston, Saskatchewan


Died: 31 Dec 2022


ANTON, Clifford Alden - Battle of the Atlantic veteran, entrepreneur, golfer and family man, spent a joyous Christmas season with his family, including Christmas Day with all of his eight great-grandchildren, and slipped away a few days later, leaving us on his 99th New Year's Eve, December 31, 2022.


Cliff was born in Eston, Saskatchewan on June 5, 1924, where he lived until he was 5 years old, then moved with his parents, Olin J and Mabel Anton, to Saskatoon, Saskatchewan. He remembered his school years in Saskatoon vividly and often told stories about his buddies and their many antics.


After graduating from City Park High School, he did what many a Saskatchewan boy of his era did during the war - joined the navy (1943). He served as a wireless telegrapher on the corvettes HMCS MAHONE and the HMCS OSHAWA, eventually taking the message notifying the ship that the war had ended.


On his return to Saskatoon after the war, Cliff, a young handsome sailor, started working with his father in the construction business, building many of the "war time" houses in Saskatoon and Moose Jaw. During that time, he went on a blind date set up by good family friends and met the love of his life, Helen Wetterstrand, who was a nurse at City Park Hospital. They were married a short six months later in September of 1949 and were happily married for 63 years, until Helen passed away in 2012.


The newlyweds wanted to start their own adventure together so they, along with Helen's mother Cora, bought a hotel in Keeler, Saskatchewan. A short time later they bought the Cabri Hotel where they resided for five years. It was in Cabri where their two sons Olin and Robert were born. With a young family, the hotel business was not for Cliff and they moved to Moose Jaw, Saskatchewan in 1955. Cliff resumed working with his father in the construction business, and immediately he and his father started to build his young family's first home, finishing just before the arrival of their third child Karen. In 1958, Cliff and Helen bought Trans Canada Trailer Sales and built it up to be a successful venture operating it for 20 years. They were active members of the community joining the Shrine Club, the Gourmet Club, and the YMCA to name a few. Cliff talked about being an investor in the junior hockey team, the Moose Jaw Canucks, as well as having helped found the ski hill at White Track. A favorite story he loved to tell was about parties at the Mess with oysters flown in by the Snowbird pilots. For many years, Cliff was proud to be part of a group called the "Bowery Boys" and with his horse, Cindy, he went on many trail rides throughout the prairies, with a favorite one being when he rode with David Suzuki and Ian Tyson.


After raising their family and selling the trailer business, Cliff and Helen moved to Calgary in 1978 where his sister, Audrey, lived. They spent ten wonderful years hiking in the mountains, golfing at Pinebrook, exploring with their truck camper and enjoying TGIF nights with their good friends and neighbours. They loved to travel and took many wonderful trips around the world during this time with Egypt, Europe, Australia, and China being their favourites. The milder temperatures of the west coast then came calling and they bought an oceanfront property in Nanaimo and built their home there in 1988. Many friends from Saskatchewan had already moved to the island and very quickly they were again active in a new TGIF group. Cliff spent his days on the golf course, visiting family in Calgary and Saskatoon, fishing, working on the property, listening to jazz, and exploring the island with Helen. They spent 25 years by the ocean and both said that these were some of the happiest years of their life.


After Helen passed away, Cliff moved into his son Olin's home in Vancouver and enjoyed his family of children, grandchildren, and great grandchildren, who came to visit him frequently.


Attending the Remembrance Day services in the city was an important event every year, with his last two services being at the Chinatown memorial in Vancouver. He was the last WWII vet at the 2022 ceremony, where he sat beside the Commander of the Royal Canadian Navy, a long way from his cramped below-decks radio room on the HMCS OSHAWA.


Cliff is survived by an adoring family who will miss him greatly: Olin (Suzanne) of Vancouver, Robert (Dianne) of Saskatoon, and Karen (Kevin Barry) of Calgary; grandchildren Elizabeth (Edward Morrison), Robert (Stephanie Lee), Angus (Sarah Davidson), Curtis (Sammi Harasymchuk), Kyle, Adam, Eric (Desiree Billett), Alana, and Megan (Ben MacKay); and great grandchildren Isabelle, Duncan, Louise, Maggie, Audrey, Austin, Wyatt and Kieran. Cliff will be laid to rest alongside Helen in Moose Jaw later this year when family and friends will gather for a celebration of his life. (The Vancouver Sun / The Province 14 Jan 2023)


Ships served in:





Crossed the Bar Index