BROADBENT – Raymond George of St. Thomas passed away peacefully, surrounded by the love of his family, on Tuesday, April 19, 2016 at the age of 81. Beloved husband of Shirley Broadbent (nee McCallum). Ray will be sadly missed by children Kathi (Craig) Jolliffe of St. Thomas, Steve (Linda) Broadbent of Aylmer, and Rob (Deb) Broadbent of St. Thomas; grandchildren Stephanie (Greg) Heffern, Tim Broadbent (Hilary Warwick), Tara Broadbent, and Corey (Erin) Broadbent; and by his great grandchildren Payton, Amelia and Jane. Predeceased by his brother Stan (Kay) Broadbent.
Ray was a life-long resident of St. Thomas with the exception of three years during World War II when his family moved to Pictou, Nova Scotia where his father, a ship’s plater by trade, worked in the ship yards. In 1964 Ray and his young family moved to Toronto where he attended the Ontario College of Education. During his teacher training he designed an auto shop which was included in the plans for the new Parkside Collegiate Institute where he taught from 1967 to 1994. From 1965 to 1967 and from 1984 to 1986, Ray taught at Arthur Voaden Secondary School. From 1986 until his retirement in 1989 he was in charge of Co-operative Education for Elgin County. After retirement he built two 1952 MG TD replicars, one of which is still in the family.
Prior to going to teachers’ college, Ray worked for 10 years at Stuart’s Garage in Talbotville where he served his apprenticeship.
Ray was active in the life of Central United Church for many years, having served in various positions on the church council, including two terms as Chair. He chaired the Vision ’97 Committee which oversaw renovations to make the church handicap accessible. He also served on the Board of Pearce-Williams Christian Centre and was Chair when the dining room was raised and a foundation installed beneath it. As well the Longhouse was renovated to include a chapel and a kitchenette.
For over 20 years Ray and Shirley Chaired the St. Thomas Rotary Music Festival for which he received a double Paul Harris Fellowship as well as a City of St. Thomas Volunteer Appreciation Award.
Ray’s first love and greatest joy was his family. He loved nothing more than family gatherings, whether they be large or small.
Visitation will be held at the Shawn Jackson Funeral Home 31 Elgin Street, St. Thomas (519-631-0570) on Friday, April 29, 2016 from 2:00-4:00 and 7:00-9:00 p.m. A celebration of Ray’s life will take place at Central United Church 135 Wellington Street, St. Thomas on Saturday, April 30, 2016 at 2:00 p.m. Private interment of ashes will be held in Elmdale Memorial Park Cemetery.
The family would like to thank the staff at St. Thomas-Elgin General Hospital for their excellent care, as well as the PSWs from Care Partners and the VON nurses, and the van drivers who assisted in his transportation during the latter part of his life.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to Central United Church, the Heart & Stroke Foundation, Diabetes Association or the VON Middlesex-Elgin.
Personal condolences to the family can be made at www.shawnjacksonfuneralhome.com
For more information about this obituary visit http://www.shawnjacksonfuneralhome.com.