Obituary of Robert Swayze
ROBERT MERRILL SWAYZE
Born August 12, 1942, to Earl Wilfred and Linda Gladys Swayze of Carnduff, Saskatchewan, Robert passed away at the Brandon Regional Health Centre on August 24, 2023 at the age of 81 years surrounded by family. Robert grew up in Carnduff, the fifth of six children. He was active in Scouts and raised animals including Angora rabbits, turtles, parakeets, pigeons and his dog Teddy. At the age of 15 he saw a need for someone who could repair TVs and Radios, so he took a correspondence course and opened up “Bob’s Radio & TV Repair” in Carnduff.
After graduating high school, he earned his BA from the University of Saskatchewan in 1963 and moved to Brandon where he was hired to teach at Brandon Collegiate Institute. In 1966, Robert became a Communications Instructor at Assiniboine Community College. It was at ACC where he met the love of his life, Gilda and they married in October 1967. Gilda and Robert headed off to Edmonton in 1968 where he earned a 2-year Masters Degree in Educational Administration in one year, returning to Brandon to take on the position of Assistant Superintendent with the Brandon School Division in 1969. Robert was promoted to Superintendent in 1993, a position he held until his retirement n 2001.
One of Robert’s proudest achievements was the opening of Crocus Plains Regional Secondary School in 1973. It was the first school to provide high school students in Brandon with the opportunity to learn a trade. Robert was also the first assistant superintendent to be elected President of the Manitoba Association of School Superintendents in 1981.
Gilda and Robert had three children, son David born in 1970, and their daughters Lara in 1972 and Leanne in 1979.
Robert had a love of nature and his perfect summer vacation was to hitch up the family’s South Park trailer behind his Oldsmobile and travel across Canada, exploring from the Rockies in the West to Thunder Bay in the East.
In retirement, he and Gilda traveled Europe twice, and took annual winter trips to Mexico, Costa Rica and the Caribbean. During the summer, Robert’s passion was his yard which he turned into an oasis of calm filled with trees, flowers and especially roses. When not in his garden he enjoyed building wooden toys for his grandchildren and helping his children with their home renovations.
Robert was a devoted supporter of the community having sat on the boards of Arm Industries, the Brandon and Area Community Foundation and the Royal Canadian Artillery Museum. He was also a member of the 1979 Canada Winter games organizing committee.
Robert is survived by his wife of 55 years Gilda (nee Falvo), children David (Jayne), daughters Lara and Leanne, as well as his grandchildren Ethan and Isla, and grand-pup Quincy. He is survived by his sister Gay (Gary) Steeves, brother-in-law Tom (Pat) Falvo, and sister-in-law Nerina (John) Robson along with many nieces, nephews and grand nieces and nephews.
He is predeceased by his parents Earl and Linda Swayze (nee Adams), along with his sisters Della (Ralph) Fairbairn and Verla (Bob) Stevenson, and his brothers Henry “Harry” (Janny) Swayze and Orvil (Mae) Swayze.
The family wishes to acknowledge the special care received by Dr Kaiser while at the Brandon Regional Health Centre. Robert wanted to send a special note of appreciation to the rehabilitation staff from physio and occupational therapy whose encouragement and humour were the highlight of his days in hospital.
Robert’s celebration of life was held on August 29, 2023 at the Brockie Donovan Chapel. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Brandon Area Community Foundation, Box 22096, Brandon, MB, R7A 6Y9.To plant a beautiful memorial tree in memory of Robert Swayze, please visit our Tree Store
Celebration of Bob's Life
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