On Saturday, October 26, Ben passed away peacefully at the Princess Margaret Hospital's Palliative Care Unit in Toronto, Ontario. He was 48 years old.
Ben is survived by his wife Anna, his father Haskel, his stepmother Sandra, his siblings Dan, Mallary and Sarah, and many nieces, nephews and cousins.
Ben was a lover of good theatre and good food. He also loved children. Over the years, "Magical Ben" had performed numerous magic shows, on a voluntary basis, for young children at various daycare centers and kindergarten classes in Toronto. Along with his loyal puppet/sidekick Quackmore, Ben had delighted many children with his magic shows and instilled a sense of awe and wonder in their young hearts year after year.
Below is what Ben wrote about his life:
"On the whole, I consider myself to have been fortunate in life. There was some good luck. There were some successes. Some happy times. Some good friends. Some adventures. Some highlights. Some insights. I thought and developed principles by which to live and work. I took initiative. I helped people. I kicked ass. Not always, but often enough. I put on magic shows for little children. I attempted to overcome and/or overcame obstacles in my life. By far, the greatest highlight of my life was the love of my life, Anna. She was phenomenal. I could not have envisioned having a better wife or person. She is worth a hundred of me. I am very proud of her. My only loss in dying so young, at 48 years of age, is not being able to spend more time with her. In death, I am forever cuddling Anna."
A funeral service will be held on Monday, November 4 at York Funeral Centre (160 Beecroft Road, North York, Ontario). Please see below for more information. In lieu of flowers, please make a donation in Ben's honour to World Vision Canada or Sleeping Children Around the World.