It is with profound sadness that we announce the sudden passing of Bob Ash on May 6, 2019. Bob was born in Fort Frances on Feb. 6, 1962 to Morris and Patricia Ash.
Bob leaves to mourn his daughter, Leah Ash (Nathan DeGagne) and grandchildren, Sirus and Tobias DeGagne, and Ariel Plante; his mother, Patricia Ash; his sister, Mary Ellen Chapman (Brent); and his brother, Raymond Ash (Cathy).
He also leaves behind his nephews and nieces, Adrian, Nathan, Daniel and Laney Chapman; Billy and Jessica Ash; as well as his great-nieces and nephews, Aric, Ben, Avah, Isabelle, Amelia, Sophia, Carthan, Wesley and Aniston.
In addition, he is survived by numerous cousins and his aunts and uncles from the Ash and Watson families.
Bob was predeceased by his father, Morris Ash, and his brother, Gordon Ash, whom he loved with all his heart.
Bob or “Buzz” (as many knew him) was happily raised in the East End of Fort Frances. He was an East Ender to the core which meant hockey at the outdoor rink until the lights out in the winter and swimming at the fish house until dark in the summer; playing knock off ginger, building forts in the nearby bush with the Roach boys, and all the mischief that free range kids would get up to in those days.
Throughout his school years Bob excelled at playing hockey and managed to get on all the travelling teams.
He was good at pretty much any sport he chose and in his later years enjoyed going to the gym to work out.
Bob graduated from High School with honours in Thunder Bay. He worked most of his adult life at the oil sands in Fort McMurray as a labourer and later as a trusted foreman. He was a devoted member of the LIUM Union.
Bob loved his family first and foremost. His most precious times were spent with his daughter, his grandchildren, his parents and his siblings.
In his last few years, he lovingly cared for his mother and was her personal chef. He loved to cook and he was good at it.
Bob treasured his close friends and his work buddies from the oil sands, often speaking of them highly, telling humourous stories of days gone by. He frequently reminisced with a heavy heart about the childhood friends and workmates that he had lost over the years.
Bob's passion was playing his guitar and singing around a fire whenever the opportunity arose.
He wrote many songs but rarely shared them unless he was in that special mood among close friends or family. In many ways, Bob was a humble man who did not want folks to take too much notice of him or his talents.
There is no question that Bob was a character at times that loved to debate, but at the end of the day he had a heart of gold.
He always supported the underdog, wanting the best for everyone and judging no one. That smile was unforgettable.
He will be greatly missed by his family and all those who were close to him.
Fly high Bob, sing those songs and have a safe landing at the end of the rainbow.
A celebration of Bob's life will be held at the Royal Canadian Legion Hall in Fort Frances on Saturday, May 11, 2019 at 1 p.m.