Hector J. Massey was a political scientist and former York faculty member

York Professor Emeritus Hector J. Massey, a political scientist and author, has died. He passed away at the York Central Hospital in Richmond Hill, Ont., on Sunday, Jan. 24, at 78. 

Professor Massey joined Atkinson College at York University in the mid-1960s as a new and energetic academic educator. He subsequently served as Atkinson’s associate dean in the 1980s. 

Left: Professor Emeritus Hector J. Massey

One of the first of his family to emigrate from Jamaica, Prof. Massey constantly promoted the benefits of higher learning to family, friends and students. He took his own advice. Prof. Massey came to Atkinson with four degrees already successfully completed, including a BA, BEd, MA and MEd, and he finalized his PhD in 1972. He was also a former Fellow of York’s McLaughlin College.

Prof. Massey’s career and scholarly work were further shaped by active participation in the local, provincial and national political arenas. He was a former school trustee for the York Region District School Board as well as a former ward councillor for the Township of King.

Prof. Massey was the editor of The Canadian Military: A Profile (1972) and co-author of People or Planes (1972), both of which have been used in academic and military educational settings. He also presented at numerous conferences and taught students at York, Ryerson and in the Canadian military. His work was published in the Journal of Asian and African Studies and The Review of Politics.

He served on many committees at York University, including the Tenure & Promotion Committee for the Department of Political Science, the College Committee on Research Grants and Sabbaticals and the President’s Ad Hoc Committee on Race Relations. In 1973, he was made an honorary member of the Canadian Forces Staff School. In 1981, he was awarded a NATO Fellowship.

Friends may call at Rosewood Church of the Nazarene, 657 Milner Avenue, Scarborough, for visitation on Saturday, Jan. 30 from 2:30pm until the time of the funeral service at 4pm. Cremation will follow the service.

The York University flag was lowered to half-mast yesterday and will fly at half-mast today until 1pm in honour of Prof. Massey.