Life is not about waiting for the storm to pass.
It's about learning how to dance in the rain.
It is with heavy hearts that we announce the passing of Tom Stewart in the early hours of February 14th at Toronto General Hospital.
We are comforted by the fact that in his final days he was never without friends and family by his side.
Tom was predeceased by his partner David Kelley and his parents, George and Jean Stewart (nee MacMillan).
He was a dear brother to Margaret (Yves) and Allan.
He will be sadly missed by his extensive family and numerous friends.
Tom grew up in Montreal, but spent most of his life in Toronto. He pursued a long and successful career in market research, most notably with Bell Canada from which he retired in 2010.
Tom never stopped missing his beloved partner David.
Tom and David were consummate advocates for the LGBT community. In their 20 years together, they were active in a telephone peer counselling service, a couples support group for gay men and a bridge club for gays and lesbians, just to name a few.
Later, Tom co-founded an association for LGBT employees at Bell Canada. It is hard to know where to begin to describe Tom's big heart, inclusiveness and generosity. He had a way of making people feel special and of putting the needs of others ahead of his own. His kindness touched everyone he met.
Tom was very family oriented, and at some point, assumed the role of family patriarch. His efforts were instrumental in strengthening the bonds in the Stewart and MacMillan clans. Tom faced multiple health issues in the last few years, but with his indomitable spirit he managed to persevere.
When able, he enjoyed nothing more than a family get together or a meal out with friends, where he would shine with his playful sense of humour and sharp wit.
Tom had wonderful support from friends and family in his last few years. Everyone who helped Tom enjoy a better quality of life was reflecting back the love he gave.
A very special thank you to the staff at Toronto General Hospital and to his palliative care team for showing Tom the compassion he deserved.
Thanks are also extended to the UHN and all the staff there who helped Tom on his journey over the years. Please join us in a celebration of life for a beautiful soul. The event will take place on March 7, 2020, at 2 p.m., at Rosar-Morrison Funeral Home & Chapel, 467 Sherbourne St., Toronto, Ontario.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the David Kelley Program at Family Service Toronto.