Ilmar Pals

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Ilmar Pals, ALS was born on August 30, 1907 in Harku, Estonia, and passed away in Edmonton on April 25, 1997. He leaves four children: Anne Vali and Einari Pals of Estonia, Maia Mekk of Edmonton, Ann (Al) Holtz of Vancouver; step- children Heidi Kass of Edmonton and Vello Kass of Kansas; his grandchildren lurgen, Liina, Kaila, Sander, Aleks, and Matthew, as well as other grandchildren and great grandchildren. Mr. Pals also leaves one brother Raimond (Lya) Pals of New Jersey. He was predeceased by his wife Lydia, in 1983.

Following his early education in Estonia, Ilmar took his technical training in Estonia, Finland, and Germany, graduating in 1944 at Hanover, Germany with a degree in civil engineering.

After emigrating to Canada in 1950, Ilmar worked in northern Ontario and in northern Saskatchewan before settling in Alberta. He and his wife Lydia, lived in Edmonton from 1953 to 1982, when they moved to Spruce Grove.

Ilmar joined the staff of the Surveys Branch, Alberta Department of Highways, in 1952 where he served articles under Albert Tonsoo, ALS. He received his commission as an Alberta Land Surveyor in 1954 and worked as a district surveyor in central and northern Alberta until his retirement from government in 1972. He continued surveying in private practice for another ten years.

Ilmar's experience in Europe, with geodetic survey networks, and his enthusiastic discussion with his colleagues of the benefits of coordinate systems, significantly contributed to the implementation of the Alberta survey control program. Ilmar was one of the early users of electronic measuring systems. He applied the first commercial model of the Tellurometer to a survey control traverse network in the foothills of Alberta in the mid 1960s. His penchant for accuracy is reflected both in the field measurements and in the drafting style of the registered plans of the many hundreds of miles of road surveys bearing his name.

Ilmar remained in good health and enjoyed the family cabin, first at Sandy Lake, and later at Lake Wabamum, gardening at his Spruce Grove home and, especially, ice fishing. He was seriously injured in a car accident on April 11, 1997 and died from complications on April 25, 1997.

C.W. (Wally) Youngs and R.A. (Dick) Bassil