I’ve included a memorial video which Amber Putman created and was displayed at the Visitation for my Dad on Dec 12 & 13, 2018
Text Transcript of Eulogy below:
William James Rosenblath was known by many names to different people. Rosie, Bill, Dad, Poppa, Pa.
Dad was Born Aug 12,1941, in Kingston ON. and was raised in Denbigh Ontario.
He suffered the loss of his mother at the young age of 11 and then then left home at 13 to work on a farm in Kingston, Ontario.
Dad Joined military after just turning 17.in 1958. His father signed the papers to allow entry under the age 18.
Dad would end up spending 8 years in the military.
He was assigned to the Canadian Guards.
After basic training he Went to Germany for 3 years on his first deployment. Dad remarked on this once with wonder saying . “There I was 18 years old and walking down a street in Amsterdam.”
When you consider Dads age, he basically grew up in those years in the military, making friendships with fellow guardsman like Ron Cooney , Bill Cook, Roger Cormier, Roger St Jean and Ed Parady to name a few. Friendships that would last a lifetime. Dad always spoke fondly of that time in his life and there was always a gleam in his eye when he talked about it..
In 1962 Dad returned to Canada and was . Stationed at Camp Picton with the 1st Battalion of the Canadian Guards.
For anyone unfamiliar with the Canadian Guards, they were known as the Queens Guard of Canada and fashioned after the Queens Guard in England. They were recognized for their sharp dress uniforms of red with those tall bearskin hats. Buzzbees I believe they are called. Every possible surface that could be shined in their uniform had to be perfect, shoes, buttons, the brim of their hats etc.
I’m sure you’ve heard the saying, Join the navy and see the world.” Dad said jokingly with the guards it was “Join the guards and shine the world”
Dad met my Mom Deanna Christine Nutley Easter weekend 1964 through a fellow guardsman who was dating mom’s friend Diane Hudgin.
Dad was scheduled for peace keeping duty in cypress so after a whirlwind romance Mom and Dad were married on August 10th 1964 at the First Baptist Church in Picton….(54 years) They honeymooned in that exotic honeymoon destination visited by so many young couples every year from all over the world. Ottawa, and then spent time.visiting relatives in Denbigh Ontario.
Dad left for cypress 7 weeks after getting married and spent 6 months on peacekeeping duty with NATO helping with the conflict between the Greeks and the Turks.
Growing up , I heard many stories of Dads time overseas in the military, too many to really get into here, but lets just say, they were filled with his special brand of mischief and fun that was a definite part of his character.
He returned to Canada in the spring of 1965.
Dad had learned many valuable trades while in the military including automotive mechanics, and cooking and the operation of heavy equipment. After his return and discharge from the military, He went to work for Bob McNally operating heavy equipment during the day and doing truck repairs at night.
After this he went to work for McFarland Construction for one season and was laid off after the season ended. The day he was laid off he came home and received a phone call asking if he wanted to come and help build an addition on CML Snider school in wellington and so he did.
Mom and Dad bought their first and only property on lake street in 1967 and shortly after this Dad started working for
The Prince Edward County Roads Department as a heavy equipment operator for what turned out to be a 31 year career from which he retired in 1998. Mom will proudly tell you that Dad was only out of work for 3 days during his lifetime.
I was born in 1969 a couple years after Dad started working for the county and that’s when their lives got really complicated.
In 1973 Mom and Dad built their current home with their own hands over the course of 23 months, paycheck to paycheck without a mortgage and moved in in 1975.
My brother James came along in November 1978 just 9 short years after I was born. It took them some time to recover from me and be ready for another child, but I broke them in. 🙂
Dad spent lots of time teaching us boys how to fish, play baseball, shovel snow, cut grass, shoot rifles and do carpentry, and along with Mom giving us a love for music, all the while impressing upon us a strong work ethic and sense.of responsibility both personal and social.
Mom and Dad opened their home to many people over the years who needed a safe place to be and grow. Anytime any kids with troubled home lives needed a place to stay my parents were there. I fondly refer to our home back then as the Rosenblath hostel.
Dad was an avid reader of western novels and history books and also enjoyed historical documentaries. Over his lifetime he read thousands of books , so many in fact that the Picton Library had to pull books in from other libraries in his preferred genres to keep up with him. They said he was the 4th highest reader of all their members and published that in their Newsletter. in the past few years Dad transitioned to using a tablet for reading and learned to download books.
Dad was a country music fan and enjoyed bluegrass as well. Mom and Dad often traveled to various bluegrass festivals around Ontario for many years and enjoyed those fun times with their many friends.
Dad retained his farming roots and grew many crops of vegetables that helped feed the family over the years. When I was young, He kept chickens and rabbits and traded those with the local butcher as well. I was often surprised by my Dads knowledge of plants . in addition to food plants, He was quite knowledgeable about natural plant based remedies and medicine.
Dad maintained his love for travel and adventure and when i was younger we went on trips with our camper van around lake Ontario and different places . Later in life he and Mom went on trips to Venezuela, Cuba, the Europe the US and various parts eastern Canada.
It’s hard to sum up a life in a short discourse like this, but All of these accomplishments and all of these experiences combined form what I consider a well lived life full of family, love and laughter. Life had its ups and downs, over the years and our family like all families has lost our share of loved ones including parents and grandparents and more recently my brother James in 2010 at the young age of 31, but through it all Dad was a pillar of strength for us and for me a role model. I’m going to miss you Dad, we all are, but we will always remember you and cherish the time we had with you. Thanks for being A poppa, a pa, a brother, a loving husband and my Dad.
Rest in Piece.