OBITUARY

Robert "Bob" Arthur Vernon

28 January, 195325 March, 2021
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The Theatre World has lost a friend and ally. Robert Arthur Vernon, age 68, passed away peacefully March 25, 2021 with family by his side.

Bob will long be remembered for his many contributions to the arts community in both Ontario and Alberta as a Scenic Carpenter, Teacher, Mentor, Advocate and Friend. Long-time member of The Canadian Institute for Theatre Technology (CITT), Bob served as Chair and Interim President of the Ontario Section. He was a very proud member of IATSE Local 461, serving as Chapter Secretary. Bob was a kind and gentle soul, dedicated to his craft and to the education of others. He taught Technical Theatre courses at Humber College, Ryerson and York University, helping shape many young minds and careers along the way. Even years later, he always had time to chat or provide advice to his former students and colleagues. Bob especially enjoyed his days supporting live productions at the Banff, Blythe and most recently, Shaw Festival Theatres, where his co-workers became his family. Never one to turn down a call, Bob also enjoyed working the occasional concert or convention hall any time opportunity knocked.

Bob took great comfort in his faith and enjoyed his duties as Church Warden over the years, most recently at The Church of the Transfiguration. He was grateful for his time and friendships made at St George’s Anglican. Special thanks to Reverends Cathie, Scott and Martha for their ministry, counsel and prayers.

Even through the trials and tribulations of his second bout with Cancer, Bob remained upbeat and confident he would beat his illness and return to doing what he loved most—woodworking, travels to the UK and long chats with family and friends over a pint or two of craft beer.

Bob was the beloved younger brother of Larry (Kate) and Beth of Nova Scotia. Predeceased by his parents, Foster and Doris Vernon, step-mother Elsie Wiens-Vernon and brother and sister in law, Murray and Mary Vernon. Stories of Bob will live on through his nieces and nephews: Doug (Sherry), Leah (Mark), Sarah (Chris), Cathy, Sean Palmer, Sarah Palmer Lucas, and Bob’s many grand nieces and nephews. Bob was a proud ‘honorary Grandad’ to Colin.

Visitation will be held at Hulse & English Funeral Home and Chapel, 75 Church Street, St. Catharines on Friday, April 2, 2021 from 2pm to 4pm. To keep within current Covid 19 regulations, appointments must be made to visit with the family. Please call the funeral home at 905-684-6346 during business hours to reserve your time. All guests are required to wear a mask upon entry to the funeral home, register at the door and maintain social distancing while visiting. Please remain in your cars until a member of the staff instructs you to enter the funeral home. A small private family service will take place Saturday, April 3, 2021 at 10 am at St. George’s Church, St. Catharines. This service will be live-streamed for those who wish to attend remotely. Livestream information can be found on the funeral home website. In lieu of flowers, a donation to the Shaw Festival Theatre in Bob’s memory would be greatly appreciated. Online tributes and condolences may be made at www.hulseandenglish.com.

Bob was a kind and generous man who made the world a better place, and we were the lucky ones to have known and loved him.

Services

  • Memorial Visitation

    Friday, 2 April , 2021

  • Funeral Service

    Saturday, 3 April , 2021

    PREVIOUS SERVICES

  • Graveside Service

    Monday, 5 April , 2021

Memories

Robert "Bob" Arthur Vernon

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Gord Milroy

2 April 2021

A big man, with a big, big heart.
His love of theatre was matched only by his love of his friends, for whom he would do anything.
Gord Milroy & Louise Philippe

Sarah Chandler

31 March 2021

Uncle Bob, I'm sorry things didn't turn out the way any of us had hoped or planned for for you. I know how much you were counting on the Car T Cell therapy in April, and that you were 100% convinced this treatment was going to be your salvation. I want you to know we would have been right by your side through it all.

When I was little, I thought you were "Shaggy" from Scooby Doo. You were always a 'fun Uncle' growing up and even now, holiday and birthday celebrations with the family won't be the same without you.
Andrew will always remember building skate board ramps with you in your workshop--to him, you will always be "Uncle Bobert".

I'm so glad I got to spend more time with you these past several months. I'll miss our Sunday visits and walks around the block or Queenston Heights.
I promise to make it to Edinburgh one day and go to the Pub you loved so much--The Royal Oak. I'll definitely raise a pint (or two) in your honour!
Until we meet again,
Love Sarah

Lisbie Rae

31 March 2021

Bob became a part of my life before Jenny and Helen were born, and I'm a great grandmother now. As a teenager, he helped build our house across the road from his home in Waterdown, and came over to play cards and Scrabble once we moved in. He stayed with us for a year to finish college in Hamilton. When the girls were little, they climbed all over him and got him to swing them up far higher than either of us could reach. He was one of the few babysitters who didn't cause howls of abandonment to erupt when we went out at night.

Bob joined Village Theatre in Waterdown with us, and grew to love the theatre community that developed around each play. He acted in Under Milk Wood (a sailor, and PC Attila Rees) and in Survival in the South, but truly found his niche building sets and later working in tech. There, he honed skills that took him into a rewarding career throughout Canadian theatre. Gentle, kind and willing to share his knowledge with newcomers and students, he was an ideal mentor. He often spoke of wanting to set up a mentorship programme with the union.

Through his career moves, and our move to Victoria, we'd still connect whenever possible. Over the last year, we became Facetime buddies; he'd share news of his treatments with such optimism! His cheerfulness kept his spirits up and made his illness bearable. I still reach for the phone, meaning to call Bob.

I'm so grateful, as I know Bob was, for the loving care of family and friends who supported him at home throughout this last year, even through COVID.

Glad to have known you, Bob. You enriched my life.
Lisbie

Fern Newlands

30 March 2021

Bob and I went to high school together. We didn't hangout together but he was always good for a quick chat. An all round nice guy. May you be at peace Bob.

Stan Nowak

30 March 2021

Robert (I always called him Robert!) has left huge shoes to fill in our local theatre community and in our hearts! He was passionate about the Shaw and DLT and just theatre on the whole! He also left a presence in our house, Basil Cottage, in Dundas - literally; he fixed our hose pipe, put in new window lintels and built our shutters! He never refused helping out and I'm going to miss him Big Time!
Final Curtain, Robert! But no Good-byes, just Farewell until meet again for a Heavenly Encore!
.

Bram Cotton

30 March 2021

Bob was a kind and thoughtful person. Our son Colin developed a very sweet relationship with Bob and it brought great joy to Colin and Bob. The Congregation at the Church used to enjoy Colin racing up to hug and sit with Bob during Church services. Rest in Peace Bob Colin will never forget you that I am sure of. Bram Cotton

Nora Mclellan

30 March 2021

Bob always had a smile and a hug for me, as I am sure he did with everyone! I never saw him in a bad mood, he was a very classy and wonderful man. I'm so very sorry for your loss, and I send my deepest condolences, Nora McLellan

Sally Watson

29 March 2021

I am remembering having Bob over for a bbq to celebrate being 5 years cancer free from his first bout of lymphoma. Also remembering how much our dog Basil loved loved his Uncle Bob. He would lick his face until he was wet from his shirt collar to his hair, Bob laughing hysterically the whole time. Good memories.

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July 1956

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August 1959

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From the Family

Biography

VERNON, Robert "Bob" Arthur -

The Theatre World has lost a friend and ally. Robert Arthur Vernon, age 68, passed away peacefully March 25, 2021 with family by his side.

Bob will long be remembered for his many contributions to the arts community in both Ontario and Alberta as a Scenic Carpenter, Teacher, Mentor, Advocate and Friend. Long-time member of The Canadian Institute for Theatre Technology (CITT), Bob served as Chair and Interim President of the Ontario Section. He was a very proud member of IATSE Local 461, serving as Chapter Secretary.
Bob was a kind and gentle soul, dedicated to his craft and to the education of others. He taught Technical Theatre courses at Humber College, Ryerson and York University, helping shape many young minds and careers along the way. Even years later, he always had time to chat or provide advice to his former students and colleagues. Bob especially enjoyed his days supporting live productions at the Banff, Blythe and most recently, Shaw Festival Theatres, where his co-workers became his family. Never one to turn down a call, Bob also enjoyed working the occasional concert or convention hall any time opportunity knocked.

Bob took great comfort in his faith and enjoyed his duties as Church Warden over the years, most recently at The Church of the Transfiguration. He was grateful for his time and friendships made at St George’s Anglican. Special thanks to Reverends Cathie, Scott and Martha for their ministry, counsel and prayers.

Even through the trials and tribulations of his second bout with Cancer, Bob remained upbeat and confident he would beat his illness and return to doing what he loved most—woodworking, travels to the UK and long chats with family and friends over a pint or two of craft beer.

Bob was the beloved younger brother of Larry (Kate) and Beth of Nova Scotia. Predeceased by his parents, Foster and Doris Vernon, step-mother Elsie Wiens-Vernon and brother and sister in law, Murray and Mary Vernon. Stories of Bob will live on through his nieces and nephews: Doug (Sherry), Leah (Mark), Sarah (Chris), Cathy, Sean Palmer, Sarah Palmer Lucas, and Bob’s many grand nieces and nephews. Bob was a proud ‘honorary Grandad’ to Colin.

Visitation will be held at Hulse & English Funeral Home and Chapel, 75 Church Street, St. Catharines on Friday, April 2, 2021 from 2pm to 4pm. To keep within current Covid 19 regulations, appointments must be made to visit with the family. Please call the funeral home at 905-684-6346 during business hours to reserve your time. All guests are required to wear a mask upon entry to the funeral home, register at the door and maintain social distancing while visiting. Please remain in your cars until a member of the staff instructs you to enter the funeral home. A small private family service will take place Saturday, April 3, 2021 at 10 am at St. George’s Church, St. Catharines. This service will be live-streamed for those who wish to attend remotely. Livestream information can be found on the funeral home website. In lieu of flowers, a donation to the Shaw Festival Theatre in Bob’s memory would be greatly appreciated. Online tributes and condolences may be made at www.hulseandenglish.com.

Bob was a kind and generous man who made the world a better place, and we were the lucky ones to have known and loved him.