Paul Cavers


CAVERS, Paul...

Paul Brethen Cavers, Professor Emeritus, Western University Department of Biology, died peacefully on April 18, 2023 at Manor Village in London, Ontario at the age of 85. He is survived by his loving wife of almost 62 years, Joan. He will be forever loved by his daughters Glenys, Brenda (Richard Campbell), Alison (Pierre Morin) and son Bruce (Nadira) and nine grandchildren, Matthew, Rachel, Aaron, Thomas, Sarah, Emilie, Benoit, Alina and Nora. Paul will be missed by his brother Pete and wife Cindy and sister-in-law Enid and husband Maurice Corbett as well as several nieces, nephews and their children.

Paul was born in Toronto, Ontario January 18, 1938 to Clarence & Rita Cavers, raised in Toronto and attended University of Toronto Schools. He studied at Ontario Agricultural College (University of Toronto) earning his BSA in Agronomy. Following his graduation in 1960 he received an Agricultural Institute of Canada award to continue his studies at the University College of North Wales in Bangor. He returned to Canada in 1961 to marry Joan Goudge, who had just graduated from Ontario Veterinary College. Joan and Paul were married on June 3rd 1961 and spent their first years of marriage in Bangor, where Paul completed his PhD.

In 1963, Paul and Joan moved to London, Ontario where Paul began his 40 year career of teaching and research in the Biology Department at the University of Western Ontario. During his time at Western, Paul supervised 45 graduate students, served on a multitude of committees and societies, and as an editor for several journals. Paul received numerous awards throughout his career, including Outstanding Contributor with Canadian Weed Society, Outstanding Teacher Award from the Weed Science Society of America, and the Mary Elliott Award for service as well as the Lawson Medal for lifetime contribution to the Canadian Botanical Association. He was especially proud of his contributions to the formation of the Canadian Botanical Association, Biology of Canadian Weeds and his time as chair and editor of the Monograph Publishing Program.

Paul’s career allowed him to travel, speak and conduct research around the world. During a sabbatical in England in 1971-72, Paul earned his Diploma of Imperial College (Master’s Degree). On sabbatical in 1987-88 he studied thistles at the Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organization in Canberra, Australia.

Paul and Joan attended St. George’s Anglican Church together for over 50 years, where he served as church warden, president of the BAC, sidesman, and lay assistant. Paul was also past-president of the Diocesan Brotherhood of Anglican Churchmen.

Cremation has taken place. A funeral service to give thanks for the life of Paul will be held at St. George’s Anglican Church, 227 Wharncliffe Road North, London, at 11 am on Tuesday, May 2nd, 2023. Visitation will be held at the church for one hour prior to the service.

In lieu of flowers, please consider a donation, in memory of Paul, to the St. George’s Century Building Fund, 227 Wharncliffe Road North, London, ON N6H2B6. Arrangements entrusted with A. Millard George Funeral Home, 519-433-5184. Online condolences, memories and photographs shared at