Darrell Arthur Robar

Passed 04/06/2021

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), SPCA or Animal Shelter of choice, Organ Donation NS and Medical Assistance in Dying NS (MAID)

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Allison, Nathan, Hilary Faith and Joanne: I was deeply saddened to learn of Darrell's recent passing. I had known Darrell for the better part of 35 years. He was among the first to share his SCI experience with me as newly injured person with SCI. I also had the pleasure to work with Darrell at CP NS for 5 years as well. He was a capable, trusted and compassionate person and colleague who always had the best interest of his clients and others in mind. He was a mentor and inspiration to many. Please accept my sincere condolences.
- Kevin Murphy
I was saddened to hear of Darrell's passing and want to pass on my condolences to his family, friends and the many people he touched working at the Canadian Paraplegic Association. I, first, met Darrell at the Victoria General Hospital in 1995 when my son, Cal, had a diving accident leaving him quadriplegic. His hard work and dedication in helping others is the legacy he leaves behind. My son, Cal, passed away on March 31 and, this morning as I sit here, I am reflecting on two people who did so much to bring awareness in advocating for the disabled communities in the province of Nova Scotia. You will not be forgotten. Sending love and prayers. Eileen, Callum MacQuarrie's mom
- Eileen Beaton
To Allison, Nathan and Hilary, You were the world to your dad. He loved talking about your antics, hobbies, and fun times together. He and I met 10 years ago and shared the love of nature and animals. I volunteer at Hope for Wildlife and half threatened to sneak a bunny or a hawk into the hospital to shock the staff and make him smile. His sense of humor is in each of you and I believe he is walking beside you now. Making sure you don't feel alone and that you can talk to him when you need. I hope your memories make you smile. I will miss your dad but am glad I knew him. Wishing you and your grandparents peace at this time.
- Shawna Burgess
Sandy, Doug, Gladys and family, we are sorry to hear of Darrell's passing. What a special person he was and the special memories will be with you forever!
- Mike and Pam
Getting to go to the Lawrencetown Exhibition and the Robar's pool; as well as all of Darrell's favourite West Paradise spots, was the highlight of my childhood summers. My grand parents thought so much of all of you, and I am so sorry for your loss.
- Kim Langille
Sincere condolences to Doug,Gladys,Sandy and all family members at this difficult time.Thoughts and prayers.Bill and Holly.
- Holly & Bill
Darrell and I were coworkers since I started my social work placement a CPA, he helped me become a social worker. Together, Darrell and I could be found in the office with the heat on and two portable heaters going; usually talking about cats, a topic he and I could go on about forever. Some of the best memories I have of our time in the office together are Darrell talking about his love of Mission Mart, his love of sweets (which my mom found out about and would always bake a little extra for Darrell), and how he always claimed CPA needed an office dog. Darrell had a genuine interest in working with and helping people and I think most of all we'll remember him for his kindness. To Darrell's wonderful family, you'll be in my thoughts.
- Tara
My deepest sympathy goes out to the family of this extraordinary man I know you are very proud of your son brother nephew may he rest in peace
- Karen york
It is with sadness that I hear of Darrell's passing. But I am full of wonderful memories of such an amazing man. I knew Darrell from CPA and also his work on neurosurgery where he gave hope and knowledge to staff and patients.
- Diane pottie
So many great memories with Darrell over the years, as friend and co-worker at Rehab. Insisting Space Mountain was our first ride at Disney, [an experience he never forgot!], parties at Doug's, his unwavering pride in his kids, our mutual love of cats...I am sure he and Robert are having unlimited "Sociables!" together. In my heart and memory forever. Judy Cook
- Judy Cook
much love and heartfelt sympathy to Gladys, Barry, Sandra, Doug, his beautiful children and Joanne. What I read and hear is that he was always helping and caring for someone and never stopped even in the end. What a warrior!!
- Doreen and wayne
Dear family of Darrell, we are so sorry for you loss but so proud of his selfless act of giving 3 other families hope. Hang onto all those wonderful memories of better times. With our thoughts and prayer and deepest sympathy, Heather (Grant), Abby, and Eric.
- Heather Grant
Darrel and I lived in the same apt building many years ago we became great friends n continued to be friends today even after I left the city and Mourvèdre out to the country where I was brought up Darrell was an awesome guy And helped me up with things during his work at CPA Canadian Paraplegic Association He will be missed RIP Bud 🙁
- Vince White
I was one of Darrell's nurses at the VG when he broke his neck.He was a delight to look after and am very pleased that he did so well.
- Dale Williams
It is with sad hearts that Peter and I wish to send our most deepest sympathies to Darrell's family. Darrell was certainly an amazing person. He helped me to realize that anything can be achieved through perseverance and dedication to your goal. Darrell had such a fantastic sense of humor. Years ago we had many moments of good laughs by Doug's pool and wood stove. And he was always our "music man" at get togethers in our home, he just knew what songs to play that everyone enjoyed! It will never be difficult to forget someone who gave so much to remember. You are all in our thoughts. Sincerely, Susan Hardy Francis
Sorry to hear. Sincere sympathy to Doug, Gladys, Sandy and all Darrell's family from the Gillis family.
- Peggy Gillis
So very sorry to hear of your loss, our thoughts and prayers are with all of you at this time. I'm sure he will leave a large hole in your lives. Bill and Jeanie Robar
- Jeanie Robar
My heart is heavy and my mind has a sense of emptiness in receiving the information that Darrell has passed. He was instrumental in my progress to move forward and live a life of independency. He was a compassionate, inspiring and a life enabler. His humor could lift my heart on occasions when life was seemingly dark. Memories of his dedication and determination to move forward on my behalf will never be forgotten. His tenacity was exceptional and appreciated by all that were fortunate to have known him. He will be missed and always remembered !!!
- Melanie Elliott
To Darrell's family and friends, my deepest sympathy on your loss. I was a young nurse on 2A Neuro when Darrell had his accident. This was in the days of no seat belts or helmets. Tha majority of patients were 18 to 25 year old men and I was 21 years old. All of us babies but we developed some true friendships and fun times during the 3+ months they were in traction. Darrell was special then and as I read these memories, he was special to the end. He has often popped into my thoughts over the years as we shared funny stories and future plans in the quiet of the nightshift on 2A. As the daughter of a father who chose MAID in September 2020 and a nurse of 40+ years, know that his decision was brave and thoughtful for those he loved. Hold the memories close as I have. Sincerely Cindy Withrow
- Cindy Withrow
To Darrell's family and friends I wish to extend my sincere condolences on Darrell's passing, Darrell was instrumental in helping my late husband and I navigate a system that could have been very difficult had I allowed it when my husband became a paraplegic. Where ever you met him whether it be at his office or at the Rehab he always greeted you with a smile that would light up a room. If he could help you with a problem he never waived from providing support. Members in the Spinal Cord Community has lost a larger than life Ally and advocate. Take your rest Darrell you fought a good fight may you now walk upright with the Angels and hold your head high for a job well done my friend you have truly earned your wings. Harriet Fagan & family
- Harriet Fagan
To Darrell's father and my dear friend Doug, Darrell's sister Sandra, mother Gladys, and his three amazing children, Donna and I share your sorrow. His memory will never be forgotten.
- Allan Leonard
Darrell's family and friends, be very proud of all his courage and strength, and Darrell is still helping others. Cherish the memories and know how close all of you are. Sincerely, Jan Sarsfield
- Jan Sarsfield
To all Family and friends of Darrell, hold dear the memories of one so Special Human Being, as he was exceptional as a mentor to many!! RIP Darrell
- Drenna Moore
To Darrell's Family and Friends. I had the opportunity to meet Darrell many years ago. He played a role in peer support for CPA. Darrell spent hours visiting my brother in the NS Rehab Centre. He was determined to assist Callum envision a life after a spinal cord injury. Callum and Darrell stayed connected over the years and shared experiences while advocating for people with physical disabilities. I am certain that the words I share will not fill the enormous void you must feel. I am very sorry for your loss. Darrell made a difference in my brother's life and the life of others. Please accept our deepest condolences from Callum MacQuarrie's family.
- Cindy MacQuarrie
Darrell made the world a much better place for so very sorry for your loss. Treasure your memories. You must be so very proud of all his strength and courage. Rest easy my friend. Marlene McCarthy
- Marlene McCarthy
My favourite memory of my father was when we would light fireworks off in my grandfathers yard. We probably made some of the neighbours mad but he didn't care.
- Hilary robar

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