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ROBERT ARNOTT GILLESPIE FRASER  Obituary pic

ROBERT ARNOTT GILLESPIE FRASER

Born: Sep 22, 1922

Date of Passing: Mar 09, 2012

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ROBERT ARNOTT GILLESPIE FRASER It is with great sadness that we announce the passing of Bob on Friday, March 9, 2012, at Grace Hospital after a lengthy struggle following surgery. Left to cherish his memory are this brother Bill (Wendy) of England, his children Sheila (Don) of Winnipeg, Kevin (Olga) of Calgary, Bob (Eleanor) of Morden; his grandchildren Grant (Nancy), Jennifer, Neil (Jen), Kathy (Kevin), Mark (Karen), Ian (Calista), Michael (Leanne) and 16 great-grandchildren, all of whom will always remember their beloved Pop. He was predeceased by his beloved wife, Frances, his parents Jean and James, his brother James and sister Connie. Bob was born on September 27, 1922, in Arbroath, Scotland, where he was raised with his brothers, Bill and James, and his sister Connie. When the Second World War broke out, Bob joined the Royal Air Force and was stationed in a variety of locations throughout the world. After being discharged, Bob went into the printing trade and became a journeyman printer. While stationed in England during the War he met the love of his life, Frances, whom he married in 1944. They spent 42 wonderful years together. He never stopped grieving her and they are now reunited. In 1957, Bob emigrated to Winnipeg with Frances and their three children. He began working for Public Press and eventually worked his way up to manager. Bob was also President of the Graphics Arts Board of Canada and was involved in the development of the printing industry. While Bob always strove to be a leader in his chosen profession, his real passion was the bagpipes. His philosophy could be described as the quintessential Pay it Forward. As a child in Scotland he took bagpipe lessons from an instructor who refused to take payment. His only request was that Bob continue the tradition by teaching others to play. Bob spent the rest of his life doing this. On his arrival in Canada he founded the Lord Selkirk Boy Scout Pipe Band and 54 years later was still passing on his knowledge. Band practice was held every Saturday morning, while individual and group lessons were held at Bob's home almost every evening of the week. He never asked for payment. His reward was watching the generations of boys he taught turn into successful adults. Throughout his piping career Bob was also the Pipe Major of the Queen's Own Cameron Highlanders and the St. Andrew's Society Pipe Band. The family would like to thank the staff at Deer Lodge Centre, Victoria and Grace Hospitals for the compassionate care they provided Bob during his stay. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Lord Selkirk Boys Pipe Band, 84 Leon Bell Dr, Winnipeg, MB R3T 5X1, or a charity of choice. Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated on Monday, March 19 at 11:00 a.m. at Assiniboia Christian Centre, 3390 Portage Ave. Interment at Assumption Cemetery

As published in the Winnipeg Free Press on Mar 13, 2012

Condolences & Memories (27 entries)

  • I grew up across the lane from Mr. Fraser and always enjoyed hearing the sounds of the bagpipes filtering outside. I didn't know him well, but always remembered his lovely Scottish accent and kindness whenever I saw him in the neighbourhood. Now, both my children are Highland Dancers and we have had many wonderful connections to the Lord Selkirk Boys Pipe Band. His legacy shall live on through his love of the pipes and the wonderful LSBPB - Posted by: Lisa ((neighbour)) on: Jun 02, 2012

  • BIG HUGE thank-you to PIPE-MAJOR BOB FRASER for teaching me my life long passion for the bagpipe. He and his family camped at Audy Lake and Moose Lake with my parents and he used to play the pipes everyday in the campground in front of his tent. I went up and asked if he could teach me but I was too small and had to wait a couple of years. - Posted by: craig kirton (BAGPIPER) on: Apr 29, 2012

  • Our son, Bruce Taylor was among the first of Bob's students when the band met at their first venue in St. Cuthburt's Church on McIntosh Avenue in East Kildonan. Our grandson, Gordon also partook of Bob's generosity and are still active in piping. Our whole family benefitted from our association with Bob and Francis Fraser. - Posted by: Letty & Ernie Taylor (Friends) on: Mar 23, 2012

  • Mr. Fraser was a great influence on all the boys in the band. I and other parents would like to say to him. THANK YOU Mr. Fraser for the many years you devoted to the Lord Selkirk Boys Band. THANK YOU VERY MUCH! Mr. Fraser, you definitely are “Fantastic”. - Posted by: Manny Bairos (Parent of Piper) on: Mar 22, 2012

  • Mr. Fraser was a kind and gentle person who was dedicated to teaching the bagpipes to young boys. As a former instructor with the band, I soon realized that it was not only the boys he was teaching, but he was passing on his knowledge and wisdom to the other instructors. This made me not only a better instructor but a better person. Thank you from all of us Mr Fraser. You will be dearly missed. - Posted by: The Hoel Family (Friends Students and Parents) on: Mar 18, 2012

  • To the Fraser family, our sincere condolences. Walk proudly now through the heather and the bracken Mr. Fraser, and play your pipes . . . a life so well lived, by a man so well loved. - Posted by: The Laird Family (Friend and student) on: Mar 17, 2012

  • I never could call him 'Bob'. From the time I was 6 until now, he's been Mr. Fraser. So thanks Mr. Fraser, from me and 5000 other young boys with whom you shared your art, your knowledge and your life. I'm gonna miss you. Sincerely, The dog's hind-leg (AKA the half-shut knife) - Posted by: Gord Taylor (LSBPB Alumni and friend) on: Mar 16, 2012

  • Mr. Fraser was a mentor and a huge inspiration in my life. Not only did he teach me to play the bagpipes, he taught me a whole lot about life in general. Focus on the positive, Dont give up, just try it till you get it right – and it will happen! I will never forget the Monday night solo lessons in the basement at 484 in St. James, the Saturday morning band practices at the Christian Cent., all the summer parades and the initial band trip to Scotland in 1981. I am absolutely grateful to have known this truly gifted, talented and generous man. I will always remember Mr. Fraser for who he was and the effect he has had on my life. Thank you for who you are Mr. Fraser, and the impact you have had on so many ! - Posted by: Dan Sloan (Friend & Former student piper) on: Mar 15, 2012

  • We feel honored and blessed to have had Pipe Major Fraser in our family's life for so many years. Bob, we will cherish and keep the many wonderful memories of you in our hearts forever. Rest in Peace! - Posted by: Bob & Bettie Fraser (Friend) on: Mar 15, 2012

  • I worked at Public Press for Mr. Fraser. He was a wonderful and kind "boss" and I deeply appreciate everything he did for me. - Posted by: nancy arason () on: Mar 14, 2012

  • Dear Mr. Fraser. I just wanted to let you know how much you mean to me. You have been a HUGE influence in my life and I hope you know that. You've been one of the greatest influences in my life and I hope you never forget that. You are an amazing man with an amazing heart. I hope you understand how much you mean to me. You have taught me many things in life, one of the most important things you have taught me was bagpiping!! I know that sounds funny but it's true, bagpiping is definitely a great thing to know and being in your band has helped a lot with that too. Your band has taught me discipline and determination. This is all because of you. You are definitely one of the most generous, funny, caring, helpful, and determined men I know. I hope you know that this is how all the boys feel in your band, and I hope you never forget that. You are truly an inspiration to everybody. From: Brent Pauls. - Posted by: Brent Pauls (band student) on: Mar 14, 2012

  • One could only be so lucky to have been a part of Bob's life and the music he loved. Thank you Bob, because, you were the one who was, "absolutely fantastic". My condolences to his family. - Posted by: Danny Hoplock (Friend) on: Mar 14, 2012

  • We have lost a truly wonderful person. Through the Lord Selkirk Boy Scout Pipe Band and the Queen's Own Cameron Highlanders, he and the other instructors, volunteers and parents helped to shape the lives of many. Our families, communities and our country are all the better for it. There is no textbook or seminar that can ever begin to teach the life lessons that we learned. His wholehearted devotion to teaching others meant the sacrifice of time with his family and friends. To the Fraser family, thank you so much for sharing him with us. I can never begin to repay you for the good that he brought into so many lives. We will all miss him. - Posted by: Grant McLean (Friend and former student) on: Mar 14, 2012

  • We wish to take this opportunity to express our gratitude for the enrichment of our lives from the sharing of your vast experience. So many memories from lessons, parades and competitions it was truly an honor to be part of the experience with you. Your heartfelt laugh and zest for life, and unending patience will be missed by all of us here. To the Fraser family we wish to extend our condolences. Rest assured his contribution to our lives will never be forgotten. - Posted by: Babineau Family (former students and parent) on: Mar 14, 2012

  • An incredible man whose pride and integrity so positively influenced the lives of so many. - Posted by: Gerry Berezuk () on: Mar 14, 2012

  • I see the vision of Mr. Fraser walking down a treed roadway in Scotland, leading the band. I remember the visits to Arbroath as well. Wonderful times shared with a wonderful man!!!!!!!!!!!! - Posted by: Nancy and Alan Gates (LSBSPB Alumni) on: Mar 13, 2012

  • Being a little sister of one of the boys in the band, I was always around the pipes and Mr. Fraser was a hero to me, someone I looked up to and someone that I wanted to be like when I grew up. I was very saddened to hear that he was not well and thankful that I was able to pay my respects to him before he left us. I will always have warm memories of you Mr. Fraser, and you will be missed dearly. Rest in Peace. - Posted by: Susie James (Walker) (friend) on: Mar 13, 2012

  • Pipe Major Robert Fraser taught countless young kids how to play the bagpipes; not for money, not for fame but for the love of piping and the joy in passing along the gift of music. He gave so much to the community, yet never asked for anything in return. He was a leader and an inspiration to many people and will be sorely missed. Mr. Fraser - Your gift of piping helped shape my life in so many ways and I can't thank you enough. You will be forever in my heart and the hearts of the Fraser family. - Posted by: Jamie Fraser (Former student and friend) on: Mar 13, 2012

  • Mr. Fraser, thank-you for your contribution to the Pipe Band movement in Manitoba. Your selfless dedication has enriched the lives of thousands, with your legacy to live on forever. You will be sadly missed, but forever remembered. Rest in Peace. - Posted by: Steve () on: Mar 13, 2012

  • Fifty years ago I would come to Bob's basement every week to learn the pipes. I would take my turn with his students of the LSBSPB though I was 20 years older than any of them. I later had the priviledge of playing with the Camerons while he was Pipe Major. "A man's man for all that". He was the greatest. - Posted by: Lud Domaratzki () on: Mar 13, 2012

  • It was not just the boys who were enriched by Mr Fraser's legacy but the families as well. Having had the privilege of being one of those families I can only say a humble thank-you to the Fraser Clan for sharing their "Pops" with us. - Posted by: Kathy and Roger Bartman (Friend) on: Mar 13, 2012

  • Bob....I want thank you for your dedication and patience in teaching my son Donald to play the pipes. The Saturday nights having fun learning Scottish Country Dancing, being introduced to Atholl Brose and delicious Meringues. The weekend band competition trips and hearing the pipe music for weeks afterward. The wonderful trip to Glasgow with St. Andrew's Pipe Band for the Worlds in 1992. Too many memories to write here. A true gentleman and scholar. I will remember you forever. - Posted by: Louise Sabourin (Walker) (Friend and Parent of a piper) on: Mar 13, 2012

  • Just wanted to say what a wonderful gentleman Bob Fraser was. He (& Francis) were so sweet. Bob inspired so many of us and we feel blessed by having had the honour to know him. - Posted by: Heather White (former piper) on: Mar 13, 2012

  • Any time I saw Bob (Competitions, Folklorama, Pipe Band Socials, etc) he always greeted me with a great smile. The community has lost a true friend, teacher, piper (just to name a few of his accomplishments) RIP Bob you will be truly missed. - Posted by: Rena Corbett (Cochrane) (Friend) on: Mar 13, 2012

  • While my time under the tutelage of Mr. Fraser and the LSBSPB family was shorter than many, I cannot begin to describe the positive affect that this experience has had in the decades that have followed. Mr. Fraser had a magical way of nurturing excitable young boys into responsible and disciplined young men. Despite 30 years having since passed, I know that I owe much gratitude to Mr. Fraser for helping to develop me into the person I am today. It is a sad time and I send my condolences to Mr. Fraser's family, and yet there is so much to celebrate about this wonderful gentleman's life and legacy. - Posted by: Glen Allen (LSBSPB Alumnus) on: Mar 13, 2012

  • Mr. Fraser, what you gave to the masses is far more than you will ever know. Your kindness, generosity and Christian spirit came through in everything you did. My son learned how to play bagpipes under your direction and with that knowledge touched every one of his family members. You will never know how many people's lives have been enriched by you...THANK YOU from one of them. Until we meet again...I say Farewell and safe travels. - Posted by: Maureen Senden (MacKay) (Friend) on: Mar 13, 2012

  • Mr. Fraser was an important and vital part of our life and we will miss the twinkle in his eye and the joy in his laughter. Our condolences to the entire Fraser Clan. - Posted by: Karen Bowman (Friend) on: Mar 13, 2012

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