John Austin Walker Cairns, formerly of Sea Ranch, Calif., passed away Sunday, February 24, 2013 at the age of 87. He was born October 4, 1925 to Thomas and Florence Cairns in New Ferry, England.

While serving in the British Merchant Marines as a radio officer during WWII, John had a chance meeting while docked in New Orleans, La. with Patricia Ann Rinow. After a three-year correspondence during WWII, John emigrated to the United States to marry Patricia to whom he had been happily wed for 64 years until his death. In 1950, John obtained his private pilot's license and from that point went on to a long and successful career as a commercial pilot for United Airlines, with his base in San Francisco. John and Patricia lived at Rogue Valley Manor in Medford, Ore. for five years before moving to Eugene.

John is survived by his wife, Patricia; daughters, Lizabeth Laakso and Kathleen Keys; son-in-law, Marc Laakso; three grandchildren, Alex Laakso, Brett, and Holly Keys; and a great-granddaughter, Lizabeth Mae Laakso.