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1945 - 2020
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BERNARD "Bernie" LUTTMER (b. March 20 1945) Passed away peacefully with his family at his side on September 1, 2020, following a stroke. Bernie was born in Groningen, Holland, son of Bernard and Tyja (Kleinenberg) Luttmer and brother to Barbara. Bernie had a passion for sailing which began as a child sailing on the canals in Holland. In 1960, Bernie immigrated to Edmonton, Alberta with his parents and sister. Bernie pursued a degree in civil engineering at the University of Alberta and swam competitively on the university swim team where he met his beloved wife Jean. After university, Bernie and Jean moved to Toronto where Bernie worked as a professional engineer designing and building swimming pools. Lake Ontario was calling and it was not long before Bernie bought his first boat - a Flying Dutchman. Bernie did everything with enthusiasm, and in typical Bernie style, Bernie and Jean also bought the small cottage where they kept their boat on Frenchman's Bay in Pickering, Ontario. The cottage was bought from Ralph Swan, and this was the beginning of a long career in the marine industry. Bernie and Jean founded Swans Marina and ran the business for almost 50 years. A leader in the boating community, Bernie supported the sport of sailing with an inclusive, generous, and hard work ethic. Throughout his life Bernie supported all types of sailors in various ways such as developing grass roots high school and family learn to sail programs, selling and servicing boats to new and long-term cruisers, and sponsoring racers and Olympic sailing athletes. You could always find Bernie tying down a stranger's boat to weather a storm or enthusiastically sharing his love and knowledge of boating. Despite working very hard, Bernie also found time for other things he enjoyed - swimming, skiing, singing, and family. He was a passionate and compassionate man, always caring and reaching out to those around him. Inspired by his own father who was an entrepreneur and an artist, Bernie enjoyed and supported the arts. He loved dearly and leaves behind his wife of 50 years, Jean; children Katherine (JP), Carol (Richard), Bernard (Nadia); grandchildren, Eileen, Clara, John, Bernard, Simon, Isabel and Audrey; nieces and nephews, Kim, Dean, and Jill; great-nieces Kassandra, Tyja, and Sam; and extended family in Canada and abroad. His spirit lives on in the wind that fills our sails and in all of us whose lives he touched. There will be a celebration of life party when large gatherings are permitted so that family, friends, and Bernie's community can come together to celebrate Bernie's life in the way he would like. In lieu of flowers, please consider donations to Ontario Sailing in support of Youth & Able Sailing Programs.

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Published in The Globe and Mail from Sep. 12 to Sep. 16, 2020.
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10 entries
July 28, 2021
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Melissa, Daryl & Mia Idiens
July 4, 2021
Bernie was a great influence for me and helped give me confidence when my wife and I decided to upgrade to our 4300 Tartan. Always available to give us pointers.
He said to us “Your not just buying a boat from me but you are also getting my devotion to you on making our sailing a fun a safe adventure.
What I thought was a sales pitch was in fact a promise to us that never wavered. For ten years he was always there. From the docking lessons, the constant calls for help understanding our boat to helping us selling our boat”Remember When” Bernie and Jeanie (as I called her) let us dock at their slip in Whitby.
I can tell you I have lost a true friend in Bernie . I will miss you.
Lawrence Cutting
April 5, 2021
Bernie was a hustler in the best sense. If he wanted it to happen he hustled to make it happen. I met him while working for Tartan and C&C Yachts in the early 2000s. I started with the company as the C&C 99 was launched. He believed in the brand and the boat and together we concocted the nonsense notion to move all C&C 99s we could to Key West for Key West Race Week. What an operation! is enthusiasm and engineering ability really helped to make it happen. Who knew that TWO C&C 99s would fit on one extended semi trailer. What an amazing sight watching the 99s race one-design on the crazy blue waters of Key West. Without him it may never have happened. I didn't know Bernie had passed away, until today, April 2021. To his family, he was a shining star in the marine industry and one of the easiest smiles I've ever seen.
Michael Tamulaites
September 18, 2020
My sympathies to Jean and family. I had known Bernie from phone conversations for many years, and met Jean and Bernie for the first time 4 years ago. Bernie was full of life, a joy to hang out with, I feel much better having known him.
James Schofield
September 16, 2020
Bernie was a bright light in our life. So many memories to hang onto - he lived so big and shared his life with us whenever we could get together. It hurts to say goodbye.
Linda and Rene Hantelmann
September 13, 2020
Dear Jean and family, my deepest sympathies to all of you. Bernard left al of us with many fond memories of ice skating parties with hot chocolate afterwards. My sincere condolences.
Maureen and Bob robbins
September 13, 2020
Dear Mrs. Luttmer, Katherine, Carol, Bernard, and Family, My heart goes out to you. Sincere condolences.
Linda Kearney
September 13, 2020
Such wonderful memories of Mr. Luttmer. Sending you my love... Megan XO
Megan Robbins
September 13, 2020
Dear Jean,

I was so sorry to read about Bernie’s passing in the Globe.

It was a long time ago but I remember fondly swimming at the complex at 6:00 am.

My thoughts and prayers are with you.

Janet Simmons
Janet Simmons
September 12, 2020
There aren’t enough words to describe this man.
Epitome of a gentleman.
Thank you for always checking in on me and showing true interest in my life. I will never forgot your words of encouragement- you were certainly one of my biggest cheerleaders!!
I can’t imagine the heaviness your family must feel, however, I know they will find peace in knowing what a stellar husband, father and grandfather you are.
Until we meet again...
Denise Campbell
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