Remembering Bob Stone

August 10, 2006

Dave’s eulogy

Filed under: Bob — rememberingbob @ 11:03 pm

He was born Robert Edward Stone, but he was Bobby, then he was a brother aka Slug. He was Akela at 17 and then he was a husband, forever Mom’s My Bob. He was a father; he was Daddy and then Dad. He was Stoney to the hockey team and he was Shithead to his good friend Jack Lawson’s Turdface. He was a proud grandfather and he was Poppa. He was and always will be Bob.

My Dad was a great man with many outstanding traits that endeared us kids to him.
He was kind and gentle
Understanding and compassionate
Loving, nurturing and patient
But most of all, he was a teacher, who instilled morals and values in us kids by leading through example.

Dad was playful and quick to laugh and see the humour in things

Barb spilt milk on the floor in Dunsany and when Dad roared into the kitchen to properly chastise the offending party, Barb piped up “Don’t cry over spilt milk” and all was immediately forgotten and forgiven in tears of laughter over simple accident.

Dad could turn the mundane into special event. A simple task such as doing the dishes with Becky would turn into renditions of The Mikado or the Pirates of Penzance or any Gilbert and Sullivan musical and if they ran out of material it would be Monty Python skits like “We are the knights who say Ni!”

(for more of Dave’s eulogy, click the word “more” below)

Dad loved telling stories. One particular favourite that we had him repeat many times involved me as a young 2 or 3 year old in Niagara Falls on Heximer Avenue. Dad had an empty box and he put it on my head and walked me along the sidewalk (effectively blindfolded) down the path and into the local park, where he made a number of turns and then returned to the entrance to the park where we stopped. He asked: OK David, where are you? And I immediately replied “I’m in the box”.

When we were young Dad was in sales and had to travel out of town on a regular basis. Our highlight of the week was waiting for him to appear through the arrivals gate at the airport. He always had a big smile and hugs and kisses for all. He never failed to bring back a small trinket for each of us. He hated being away from the family and eventually moved on from that job to one that would allow him to spend more time with his family.

He loved kids and involved in all of our lives and involved in the Scouting movement for many years beginning as a Pack leader while teenager in Niagara Falls, then returning to the pack when he and Mom moved back to Niagara Falls shortly after I was born. When we moved to Toronto he involved himself with a local troop and assisted Jack Lawson with a number of camps. When I was old enough, he joined my cub pack as Bagherra and guided me through Cubs and into Scouts then moved on to successfully coaching my hockey teams for as long as I can remember. He and his good friend Jack Lawson were shithead and turdface and taught us working hard and playing hard also included laughing hard. I loved having Dad as a coach, he taught me the values of fair play, and
He earned the respect and admiration of players and parents alike for his love of the game, sense of fair play, and ability to motivate and instill values through his coaching and direction.

His Blue Jays, the Leafs, golf and even the Argos. Dad and I watched Leaf games together, sometimes with me in Canada and him in Florida with the phone to our ears.

Dad taught us many things over the years but I think the most important was respect. Respect for oneself but more so the respect of others. He was always there to lend a helping hand, whether it was building a neighbours dock or deck (Dad loved decks as you can tell by the Quarry). He was always there to lend a helping hand.

He taught us respect for our family and for our family’s family. For years he was Mr. Fixit for Grandma Lee and he would repair anything that the Lee handyman’s best friend, Scotch tape, wouldn’t fix. Perhaps he was helping paint lay tile flooring, solve an electrical problem, replace a screen or fix a leaking tap. One day when something dear got broken at Grandma Lee’s house a young Libby Evans was quick to cheer up that “It’s OK Grandma, Uncle Bob can fix anything.”

He taught me to respect women, and that chivalry was not dead. It is a mere pittance to hold a door, offer a seat, hold a chair or help out around the house. The efforts are often rewarded with a hug or a kiss and Dad loved those. He taught us to respect our Mom. I never heard him say nor do anything negative about His Edie. He adores her, and I speak in the present tense, for even in death I know that can’t be suppressed.

Dad cherished his family, his wife, his children and his 10 adoring grandchildren; Christopher, Caitlin, Michael, Andrew, Matthew, Meaghan, Laurel, Jonathan, Justin (who provided him with a special charm necklace) and Zoë Through his life and his examples, he taught me and Becky and Barb how to be a spouse and a parent and someone he can be proud of. The fruit of that labour is evident today in the strong family before me. We are now 17 strong but we are not reduced by his absence, only stronger by the love and respect that he instilled in us all.

We’ll miss him, but he’ll live on through us in all we do, today and tomorrow.

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