The Military Museums

Lieutenant (ret'd) Douglas "Barry" Agnew (1945 - 2021), joined the Calgary Highlanders as a piper with the Regimental Pipes and Drums in 1975. He ascended to the rank of Sergeant, was commissioned from the ranks and promoted to Lieutenant in1985.

Barry was proud to honour the traditions of the regiment, and a highlight during his time serving as Public Affairs Officer was when he had the opportunity to participate in the presentation of a new Queen's Colour to the Highlanders by HM Queen Elizabeth II during her visit to Calgary in 1990. Barry retired from the Highlanders in 2000.

Barry was born in Saint John, New Brunswick and was educated at Central High School in Calgary, later earning a B.A. majoring in history from the University of Calgary in 1968, followed by a B.Ed. at the University of Alberta in 1972. Most of his working career was spent in the museum profession, including twenty-seven years at the Glenbow Museum leaving there as Senior Curator, Military History in 2001. After Glenbow, Barry started his own museum consulting business, working in several museums throughout Alberta, with the primary contract at the Military Museums as Curator of the Calgary Highlanders Museum.

Following civilian retirement in 2010, Barry continued as a dedicated volunteer for the Highlanders and was active in many historical, military, and museum associations throughout his career including the Alberta Museums Association. He brought a high degree of professionalism to The Military Museums and worked tirelessly and meticulously as an archivist as well as an artifact conservationist. His knowledge of regimental history was unrivalled and his skill in writing resulted in many articles and papers that are still being utilized for research today. In 2019 he began working as part of the Calgary Highlanders regimental history book project and was instrumental in what was finally published.

A dedicated historian, soldier, husband, father, grandfather, brother, and uncle - he passed away on 12 December 2021, after battling cancer and multiple sclerosis. His humour, knowledge and friendship will be deeply missed.

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