It is with a great sense of loss - but also profound gratitude for a life well-lived – that the family of Bob Stewart announces his passing on Friday, September 1, 2023. He left us peacefully after a lengthy, difficult struggle with Parkinson’s Disease.
Bob naturally approached life with good humour despite his deteriorating physical condition, a trait exhibited early in a happy carefree childhood. Fond memories of bicycling along the Rideau Canal and summer visits to his grandmother’s cottage on Rice Lake were often mentioned. Later in life he enjoyed many outdoor activities - at the helm of The Moody Blue, golfing at Oakdale and skiing at Alpine. Beyond leisure time, Bob always sought to be an active participant and contributor rather than simply standing by. This included being an enthusiastic Kinsmen member, serving as commodore of the Oakville Yacht Squadron and as President of the Professional Market Research Society.
As a young man, Bob followed his brother Bill into the H.B.A program at the University of Western Ontario. He graduated in 1953 and continued to enjoy reunions with classmates well into his eighties. His business career began at Goodyear and then The Ford Motor Company. There he joined the market research department and found a niche for the remainder of his working life. He retired as Executive Vice President of the Creative Research Group.
Ford led Bob to Oakville where he and his then wife Hilda raised cherished sons, eventual engineers Jim and Paul, of whom he was very proud. They shared many good times - camping and sailing. Bob tied many hockey skates and remembered – not always happily - rising early for morning practices. He delighted in Paul’s curling endeavours, marvelled at Jim’s abilities as a handyman and craftsman and cherished their families, which grew to include spouses Diane and Anne, grandchildren Jesse and his wife Kaya, Nik and his wife Megan, Madison and great-grandchildren Holden, Nora and James.
To his wife Marilyn Sandler, his partner in life and business for the last 40-plus years, Bob was a calming presence, reassuring voice, loving support and treasured companion. Always supportive and helpful, but never overbearing, Bob actively helped Marilyn raise Lesley, Julie and Jeremy. They, with their spouses Adam, Mark and Barbara, dearly loved him. Alexander, Daniel, Michael, Coby, Ariel, Adira, Aliyah and Shira, all brought their “Papa” Bob tremendous joy. Predeceased by his siblings Bill and Barbara, he valued his long relationship with his sister-in-law Dorothy and a large extended family.
Primary caregivers, Gemma, Susan and especially Emilda contributed hugely to Bob’s comfort in his final years, as did the remarkable practice of Dr. Robert Kingstone.
Bob’s family will forever cherish the memory of him as a gentleman and a gentle man.
A memorial service is scheduled for Sept. 30 at the Mt. Pleasant Cemetery Funeral Centre. Visitation will begin at 2 pm, service at 2:30, reception to follow. A link to livestream the service will become available at the top of this page at approximately 2:15 pm.
If desired, donations should be made in Bob’s memory to a charity of your choice.
Mount Pleasant Cemetery, Cremation & Funeral Centres