CANADIAN EPICS IN RADIOCOMMUNICATION
ALUMNI WHO LIVED THE ADVENTURE OF RADIO
WIRELESS TELEGRAPHISTS - SPARKS - RADIO PIONEERS
RADIO OPERATORS - RADIO TECHNICIANS
RADIO TECHNOLOGISTS - RADIO ENGINEERS
RADIO INSPECTORS - SPECTRUM MANAGERS
ÉPOPÉES CANADIENNES EN RADIOCOMMUNICATION
LES ANCIENS QUI ONT VÉCU L'AVENTURE DE LA RADIO
TÉLÉGRAPHISTES SANS FIL - PIONNIERS DE LA RADIO
OPÉRATEURS RADIO - TECHNICIENS RADIO
TECHNOLOGUES RADIO - INGÉNIEURS RADIO
INSPECTEURS RADIO - GESTIONNAIRES DU SPECTRE
Larry Toms was a friend. I met him on Cape Breton Island when he worked for the Canadian Marconi Company in the 1970s. I was a Department of Communications Radio Inspector at the time so I frequently worked with Larry during inspection of radio systems in northeastern Nova Scotia. I got him interested in Ham Radio and I finally convinced him to take the exam. My call sign in those days was VE1RI so he chose call sign VE1ARI after passing the exam. He joined the Sydney Amateur Radio Club and volunteered his services maintaining club repeaters.
I lost contact with Larry when I left Cape Breton in 1980 but met him again in 1984 when he worked for ADGA and the CPR in Montreal. I lost contact again until last year when I found out he passed away in Florida in 2009.
Larry was a great guy and he had the brain of an inventor. It was an honour to be his friend.
Donald Courcy VE1CG
21 May 2015
Larry Arthur Toms, 58, (1951 - 2009) Pensacola, Florida, passed away on Wednesday, December 9, 2009 due to an aortic dissection.
Born in Gander, Newfoundland, Canada, he was the son of Arthur W. Toms and Elizabeth Mina Toms (nee March) and spent his early childhood to teenage years in La Scie, Newfoundland.
He started his career in radio communications, navigation and telemetry with the Canadian Marconi Company. From Marconi, he joined Adga Inc, initially as a radio specialist for Hydro Quebec, and subsequently as a ground science officer for the National Research Council Canada's rocket range at Churchill, Manitoba and the high altitude balloon launch at Gimli, Manitoba.
In 1980, his success led him to the Canadian Pacific Railway in Montreal, Quebec where he replaced outdated software with a number of expert systems that were to become the first expert systems to be used by a corporation in its daily operations.
In 1987, he left CPR to pursue continued development and marketing of the novel Locomotive Oil Analysis Expert System, working both independently and for GasTOPS Ltd. The culmination of this innovative work was published in his book, Machine Oil Analysis: Methods, Automation and Benefits, now an industry reference book in its third edition.
In addition to this text, he developed a training program including videos which he delivered to a number of Fortune 500 companies. In more recent years, he established with his wife, Allison, Lubrication and Fluid Power, Inc. which published the technical Lubrication and Fluid Power Journal as well as continued to build new knowledge bases primarily for the support of engine maintenance.
In addition, to his active, productive and innovative work life, Larry enjoyed private life with family and friends. He was an avid musician who taught himself to play bass at an early age and the passion for music continued throughout his life. He enjoyed working with his hands - from designing and building replicas of guns and boats for his sons, to fine carpentry projects at home. Always a problem solver with inventive solutions, his most recent project was an off-grid solar photovoltaic and hot water system to power his home.