By John Moore, Columnist
A strong and passionate voice for all things environmental has left us. I ‘m referring to the recent passing of Bob MacDonald a valued member of our community and indeed province.
Bob will be fondly remembered and sorely missed by all who knew him. No more will this tremendous loss be felt than by his constant companion of almost 50 years and comrade in arms, his wife Wendy of the infamous Bob and Wendy duo. It’s very difficult to think of one without the other. Our heartfelt condolences thoughts and prayers go out to all Bob’s loved ones.
A few years ago I had the good fortune of serving with Bob on a committee aimed at developing trails in the newly protected Blue Mountain Birch Cove Lakes Wilderness area. This was a daunting task and was filled with all kinds of hurdles. Throughout it all Bob, with Wendy by his side, was able to secure funding from the province to pay half the cost for a trails plan. Our respective organizations managed to fund the rest. To this day the completed trails plan is on google patiently waiting for anyone who wants to take this project on. Simply google BMBCL trails plan and have a look. I would also add Halifax Northwest Trails, in which Bob served with for many years, are always looking for new members. If you are concerned about the environment and want to get involved why not check them out.
Most of all I enjoyed hiking with Bob. He was a fountain of information and made for an always learned hiking experience. He was amazed at the flora and fauna that he found. On his first hike to the area behind Maskwa, he couldn’t believe the number of Jack pines there were. I remember on another occasion Bob was complaining about all the needless spider trails throughout the Blue Mountain Wilderness area. A short time later someone said “Where’s Bob”. We spent the next 10 minutes or so calling out his name. Shortly after Bob reappeared with a wry smile on his face and I felt somewhat relieved. Sometime after it dawned on me however maybe that was a teaching moment Bob had initiated. If so, his point was well made. His quest for knowledge and understanding was never ending.
A part of Bob I didn’t know much about, but got a better glimpse of, was his life as an ever consummate University Man. Thanks to the words of his good friend and former colleague, Nick Hill. He said at his celebration of life ceremony Bob was never one to take the easy way out. He was always striving for better whether it was helping his students in organic chemistry or focusing on the larger picture and keeping Mount Saint Vincent standards the highest they could be. I have a feeling Mount Saint Vincent wouldn’t be the great university it is today without Bob’s tremendous contribution.
Slighe Nadair, Bob.
I should like to extend a blessed and happy festive season to you and your loved ones. It’s a time of year where hope, goodwill, and renewal should be front and center