Darrell Arthur Robar
Obituary For Darrell Arthur Robar
Robar, Darrell Arthur Halifax, NS
It is with deepest sadness and grief that Darrell left us at the age of 60 on April 6th at the QE 11 Halifax Infirmary site. At the same time the family are also joyful that at the end of his challenging, yet fulfilling and rewarding life, he was able to selflessly give three unknown people his kidneys and lungs.
In body only, he leaves his three most important, much loved and incredibly sweet children, Allison Grace (20) and twins Nathan William and Hilary Faith (16) and the mother of children, Joanne (Rob) Dunnington.
He was the son of very proud parents Gladys (Barry) Lewis-Jennings and Douglas J. Robar and much adored brother of Sandra (Rick) Hamilton.
Darrell was raised in the rural community of West Paradise in the Annapolis Valley where he sat in cow pastures, threw a ball so high in the air that you would swear it reached the clouds and rode his bicycle to the Power House to swim. Of course he wouldn’t pass an opportunity to grab a strawberry or two from Johnnie Bishop’s fields or pick a Bough Sweet from Ray Sheridan’s orchard.
In his adolescent years, he and his sister worked at Wilsonia Kennels and Grains Farm. It was there that he discovered his first love .... the love of dogs. This evolved into the love of all animals.
In 1983 Darrell was involved in a motor vehicle accident at the age of 23. He was left with a spinal cord injury at the quadraplegic level. In keeping with his authentic spirit, he met this challenge head on with determination, tenacity and a positive attitude. After recovery, he moved to Halifax where opportunities for people with mobility disabilities were greater.
He found employment the Department of Mines & Energy as a data entry clerk. He was by this time in an apartment in Quinpool Towers and his new life had begun.
He became very involved the Canadian Paraplegic Association, visiting the Nova Scotia Rehab Centre to offer newly injured patients encouragement, support and hope. It was in 1988 that he was presented with the Dr. James W. Reid Memorial Award for “Quadraplegic Of The Year”.
Through Hanson College (Dal University) and St. Mary’s University, Darrell became a Registered Social Worker. He left Mines & Energy and embarked on a new career with CPA in 1990 where he was employed as a Counseller. Darrell was not one for recognition but people noticed him. They saw the kindness, the empathy and his ability to feel what that person in front of him felt. Over the years Darrell and his boss, Nancy Beaton developed mutual respect, a strong bond and an everlasting friendship.
You may have seen Darrell on an episode of Live at 5, pictured with an article from the Chronicle Herald, advocating for several different issues relating to persons with mobility disabilities. He, along with his children, had an opportunity to speak with Rick Hansen at the NS Rehab Centre in Halifax. Despite all this, Darrell did not want to be remembered as the man in the wheelchair. He wanted to be remembered for who he was as a man.
His children were the most important people in his life. He was an incredible father, exposing them to opportunities that he could not participate in ... fishing, flying kites at Grammy Jennings on St. Mary’s Bay, swimming in Grampy Robar’s pool in West Paradise and foraging in Auntie Sam’s vegetable garden on the mountain. He was the best son and brother anyone could ever ask for. He was special. Darrell was always more concerned about the people who loved him than himself.
Although we will always love and miss him, we glean comfort from the fact that this was his choice. We know that wherever he is, he is happy. He touched us all. Rest easy sweet man.
To all family and friends, we heard your thoughts and prayers and felt your love. You all mean so much to us. Without your help this journey would have been much more difficult. You know who you are.
To Nancy Beaton, mentor and friend, Teri 4.2 nurse, Dr. Short NS Rehab Centre and Shelly Palliative, we are forever connected.
To Dr. Janice Chisholm and the entire MAID team for answering difficult questions with such honesty and conviction.
To the Organ Donation Team, we salute you.
To Dr. Jack Rasmussen for enabling us to have quality time with our father, our son, our brother, our friend.
Donations are encouraged to the Canadian Paraplegic Association (NS) www.thespine.ca, SPCA or Animal Shelter of choice, Organ Donation NS and Medical Assistance in Dying NS (MAID)
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