JFW Weatherill was a towering icon in his field, labour arbitration, despite the fact he was a tiny and shy man. Fifteen years older than I, he was already the most respected Arbitrator in Canada, and widely recognized in America as well, when I joined AECL as a junior labour relations officer. One of my first jobs in AECL was to research precedents in the Labour Arbitration Case journals to determine whether the union grievance we were contesting was likely to be supported at arbitration. Weatherill's awards littered the LACs. Years later I appeared before him as Director of Human Resources at AECL arguing some case. He had no memory of that of course but it was an august moment for me. Two decades later, he opened his new office down the hall from me in the Delta Hotel Office Building in Ottawa. I had the temerity to ask him if he would be interested in having me as a roommate, as he had more space than he needed. Surprisingly, he said that might work out quite well. I say surprisingly because I didn't know then that he was as retiring and reclusive as he was. It was this distance demeanour, combined with his reputation, and prodigious intellect, that so intimidated others. He hardly knew it. We were roommates for more than twenty years, and frequent luncheon companions, and in quiet and subtle ways I think we valued each other greatly. And for that I feel honored.
Ted was very supportive of me when my wife died of cancer almost three years ago; he also encouraged me to pursue my interest in writing books. He even endorsed the two memoirs of my dogs, and his recommendation can be found on the back cover of The Hallelujah Chorus. We used to joke about him earning a portion of my royalties from the sales of my books. I guess I don't have to pay him now.