Obituary for John Rodriguez
In Loving Memory of John R. Rodriguez, 80 years. Peacefully Wednesday, July 5th, 2017 at his residence, with loving family at his side.
It is with heavy hearts that the Rodriguez family announces the death of its patriarch, John Rodriguez. Like so many, John came to Canada in search of a better life. He embraced this country, its history and everything it stood for. Through his various careers as a teacher and politician, and also as a community volunteer and activist, John worked tirelessly to improve the human condition and to encourage others to reach their full potential. John came to Canada from British Guyana at 18 years of age, on his own, not knowing anyone and with only $50 in his pocket. From there, he built a family, a life and a legacy.
John is survived by his beloved wife of 56 years, Bertilla (Bobbato) and his five sons, Damian (Sheryl), Brendan (Mary Perry), Derek, Declan (Mary), and Emlyn. Proud grandfather (Nonno) to his grandchildren Jared, Kennedy, Macy Grace, Jannah (Curtis), Holly and Violet, and dear great-grandfather to Kaiah and Murphie. John was predeceased by his parents Gloria and Clement Rodrigues and is survived by his sister, Anne, of Mississauga (daughter Anne Marie), and his sister-in-law, Jane Rodrigues of Coniston (children Matthew and Sara).
John, in addition to his commitment to serving his community and his passion for politics at the federal and municipal levels, loved to spend time with Bertilla enjoying theatre at Stratford and Niagara-on-the-Lake, gardening, and watching classic movies and the Blue Jays games. He enjoyed the annual family fishing trips with his sons (though he never did catch much!) Another great passion of John’s was horse racing and he spent many evenings at Sudbury Downs, beating the program against his hand and cheering his horses home. The family will always remember their epic adventure to Italy in 2013 with 16 family members, great food, much wine, and endless laughter.
John will also be fondly remembered by special family friends Janet Lovelady and Kyle Beaudry, as well as his many students, and the staff and colleagues with whom he had the pleasure to work.
A quote from his favourite novel Jonathan Livingston Seagull:
“You have the freedom to be yourself, your true self, here and now, and nothing can stand in your way.”
John lived his life according to this quote from poet Robert Frost:
“The woods are lovely, dark and deep, but I have promises to keep, and miles to go before I sleep, and miles to go before I sleep.”
Resting at the Lougheed Funeral Home (252 Regent Street at Hazel Street, Sudbury) on Monday, July 10th from 2 -5 p.m. and 7-9 p.m., with parish prayers at 7:30 p.m. Monday. Funeral Mass in St. Patrick’s Church (39 Walford Road, Sudbury) on Tuesday, July 11th at 10:00 a.m. Cremation with interment in the family plot at the Park Lawn Cemetery.
In lieu of flowers, donations to the St. David School ‘John Rodriguez Bursary Fund’ are welcomed and appreciated.