Robert Gordon (Bob) Armstrong
March 2, 1939 - December 20, 2011
ARMSTRONG: The family of Bob Armstrong is saddened to announce that Bob passed away on Dec 20, 2011, in Nanaimo B.C., after a brave struggle with diabetes, cancer and heart disease.
Robert will be greatly missed by his loving wife of 53 years, Ruth, and their four children, Bill (Kristie), Jane, Sherri (Tim Gale), and John (Annaleis). He will be greatly missed by several adoring grandchildren. Bob is also survived by two brothers, Bryan (Jean) and Peter (Malena), and their children. Bob was predeceased by his mother, Edith (nee Campbell), his father , Gordon, and his stepmother, Luella (nee Goodfellow)
Bob was born in Dodsland, Saskatchewan at the end of the Dirty 30's and on the cusp of the Second World War. As a young child, he lived in Cando, and Battleford before his parents moved their family to North Battleford. Times were tough, as his father, a teacher, was paid mainly in chickens.
Bob met his wife, Ruth, in Banff in the summer of 1958 when they were both working summer jobs, he as a Tour Bus driver for Brewster, and she as a waitress. They had a whirlwind romance and were married on January 6, 1959. Bob always loved the mountains, particularly Peyto Lake, which he called "the jewel of the Rockies" and Moraine Lake. He and Ruth never tired of travelling between Nanaimo and Calgary to visit family, as there was so much beauty to appreciate. Later, they expanded their travels to include Europe, South America, Antarctica, and Australia, but always on the boat ride home to Nanaimo, he declared this was the most beautiful part of the world
Bob began his adult life as a social worker in Melfort, Sask, but soon became an English teacher, and shortly after, a Principal. Bob taught in Biggar, Beechy, and Young before finishing his career in Frontier. He took great pride in his students' accomplishments and was keenly appreciative of those students who kept in touch, as he was very interested in their lives.
Bob was a student and a critic of human behaviour. He liked to say that life was "licking honey from a thorn" or that hell for an English Teacher, had no fire, only the Sisyphean task of marking endless papers.
Bob was an avid fan of baseball, hockey and curling, all of which he played when he was younger, and coached as a parent and teacher, when he was older. More recently, these pastimes, along with a keen interest in the stock market, kept him happy in his sedentary life.
In his retirement, Bob was a volunteer with the Canadian Diabetes Association and throughout his life was a secret angel to many people who needed his help.
Grandpa will be greatly missed. He was always ready to listen to his grandchildren and offer advice and solace when needed. He enjoyed taking his grandchildren to the crab dock in Nanaimo to watch the seals and to visit with the crabbers. He also liked to take them "fishing," which involved going to the local market to buy fish and picking up some ice cream along the way.
Donations in Bob's memory can be made to a charity of your choice.