Barthel Funeral Home


William "Leo" Egan

April 12, 1932September 26, 2020

Passed away peacefully on Saturday, September 26, 2020 at Stirling Heights in Cambridge.

Born in Bromley Township, to Michael and Mary Jane (née Gannon), he is predeceased by his brother James (Colleen) of Sudbury and his sister and brother-in-law Teresa and Pat Kelly (Arnprior). Leo married the love of his life, Alene (née Imbleau) and was her devoted husband for 61 years. He was a loving and supportive father to Mary (Paul Welsh) of Ottawa, Raymond (Rod Browning) of London, and Aline Boles (Paul) of Mississauga, and the proud grandfather of Gareth and Ryan Welsh and Sara and Lorna Boles.

After teaching for 3 years in Cobden, Ontario, Leo joined Preston High School in 1962. He later earned a master's degree at the University of Waterloo and became Head of History. Known to many as “Mr. PHS” for his participation in many activities including the Panther school newspaper, organization of commencement, and History Canada, he was an exemplary teacher, unfailingly kind and patient with all students. Following his retirement in 1993, Leo enjoyed travel with Alene, reading, participating in the democratic process and volunteering for both the Kidney Foundation and the Heart and Stroke Foundation. He was an active member of the London Radio Club.

The family extends heartfelt thanks to the staff at Stirling Heights for their compassionate and skilled care.

Should you wish to make a donation to honor his memory, please consider the Heart and Stroke Foundation, the Canadian Cancer Society, or the Cambridge Self-Help Food Bank.

The Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated at St. Clement’s Catholic Church, 745 Duke Street, Cambridge on Tuesday, September 29, 2020. Please call the Barthel Funeral Home (519) 653-3251 to RSVP to attend the service as the numbers are limited for safety. In accordance with current Covid 19 provincial, federal and the bereavement authority of Ontario, special arrangements have been made to accommodate the safety and convenience of everyone. Access to the church facility will be controlled and all visitors will be required to wear a mask, to provide the funeral home personnel with their name and telephone number upon arrival, and to observe physical distancing measures while on the premises.

Private family burial at Parklawn Cemetery.


  • Mass of Christian Burial

    Tuesday, September 29, 2020


William "Leo" Egan

have a memory or condolence to add?

Nelson Amaral

January 12, 2021

I remember Mr. Egan from Grade 10 History class. He was a great teacher with an exceedingly brilliant sense of humour. To his family I offer my condolences, he was a good man. I am sorry for your loss.

Christiane Lickley

October 4, 2020

Sincere condolences to the Egan family. As a neighbour and a student, I always admired Mr. Egan for his kindness and passion for history and teaching.
The Michaelis family

Shaun Coleman

October 2, 2020

Mr. Egan was the best history teacher I ever had in school. He made history interesting and gave me a life-long interest in history. I have done a lot of things over the years, but the interest in history that he started has always stayed with me.

Margaret Sanderson

September 29, 2020

What do you call a person who gives you a gift when you are a teenager and it lasts into your seventies? A gem of a teacher, that's what!
Mr. Egan gave me--and I'm sure many others--the gift of love of history. His classes were the bright spot in a dismal high school; the subject could have been dry, but he made it fascinating.
He had a wonderfully subtle sense of humor and read "1066 and All That" to us in class. I still have my copy and I thank him silently for introducing us to it, whenever I read it.
Although I worked most of my life in the tech sector, I never lost my appreciation for history.
I doubt that he realized the number of people he influenced and inspired. A gem indeed! Thank you Mr. Egan.

Trudy Rawson

September 28, 2020

One of my favourite teachers (1965). Always remember his corny jokes. A well lived life.

Michael Gray

September 28, 2020

Mary, Ray, Aline, & Mrs. Egan:

I am sorry for your loss. Mr. Egan was my favorite teacher at PHS.
He made me sit in front of his lectern in case I fell asleep, and would rock it on to my feet, if I did to wake me up. His response was always the same "Thank-you for rejoining us Mr. Gray. If
anyone laughed he would say "It may seem funny to you but his grades are better than yours and he is sleeping!" One part teacher one part comedian.

He Will Be Missed,

Mike Gray

Sheila Cox

September 28, 2020

Our children - Jeremy and Lynne Cox remember Mr Egan very well. He taught them History ten years apart. He was extremely well liked by both our children. I believe that his daughter Mary was one of Lynne’s friends. Our thoughts and prayers are with all at this sad time. Sincerely, Sheila&Don Cox.

Alicia Smith Owen

September 28, 2020

Mr. Egan was my grade 11 history teacher; I have fond memories of his class and his smile.

I am sorry to hear of his passing and send my deepest condolences to his family (especially Ray who taught me swimming)

Margaret Ann (Clark) Collard

September 28, 2020

Mr. Egan was my teacher for economic history his first year at PHS. I wrote a rather large, comprehensive paper on how the economic policies of the Roman Empire enabled their being a dominant ruler for such a long period of time over a vast area and how that affected the growth and development of several countries.
I received an "A+". But the real honour was how Mr. Egan encouraged me and even asked to keep my paper for future use in the class. Of course I said yes. Margaret Ann (Clark) Collard

Paul Dearlove

September 27, 2020

I am so sorry to hear of the passing of Mr. Egan. I went to PHS , however my brother Ken Dearlove worked along side as a teacher at PHS. They both devoted their lives to their students. Rest In Peace