Family of Canadian on missing Air France flight remembers energetic go-getter

The family of a Canadian man who vanished along with more than 200 others after an Air France flight disappeared over the Atlantic Ocean are remembering him as a world traveller who never forgot his roots.

GUELPH, Ont. — The family of a Canadian man who vanished along with more than 200 others after an Air France flight disappeared over the Atlantic Ocean are remembering him as a world traveller who never forgot his roots.

Brad Clemes, 49, was born and raised in southwestern Ontario but had lived overseas for about the last 14 years.

The married father of two sons in their 20s was an outgoing world traveller who never sat still, said his mother, Norene Clemes.

“He’s one of these people that never sits still, go-go-go, very energetic,” Clemes said when reached at her home in Guelph, Ont.

“He wanted to live in Europe because he wanted to have his two sons grow up and know the whole world.”

Clemes attended Wilfrid Laurier University in Waterloo, Ont., and York University in Toronto.

He worked in Toronto in the early 1990s before moving abroad to become a marketing manager for Coca-Cola in South Africa. He also worked in Eurasia and the Middle East before eventually settling in Brussels with his wife, Anne.

Air France and Coca-Cola have confirmed Clemes was on board the missing plane.

His mother last saw her son several weeks ago, when he paid a brief visit to his hometown during a business trip to the beverage industry giant’s Atlanta-based head office.

“I wondered if he’d ever wind down, I never saw him sit down and rest,” she said.

The man’s eldest brother, Blake Clemes, remembers him as a avid golfer and well-liked, intelligent man who enjoyed much success.

While he lived all over the world, Brad always had a special place in his heart for Canada, his brother said.

“(He and his sons) still, even though they’ve lived all over the world, they still see themselves as truly Canadian,” he said.

Brazilian military pilots searching for the missing airliner reported Tuesday they’ve spotted debris that may be related to Monday’s crash.

They’ve identified an airplane seat, a life jacket, metallic debris and signs of fuel along the passenger jet’s path, but so far found no signs of life.

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