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Leonard Rosenberg


Leonard Rosenberg
Born March 4, 1926, in Montreal, Len Rosenberg passed away peacefully on May 23, 2019, in Cambridge, Ont., after a wonderful, long life filled with great friends, many adventures and a passionate interest in the world around him.

The son of Sam Rosenberg and Bess Fineberg, first-generation Romanian and Lithuania immigrants, Len was a curious soul and a life-long learner. He loved good conversation, meeting new friends and was generous in helping others through a long list of volunteer organizations, often connected to his progressive political views and belief in social obligation to others. He was a Mason for 60 years, a Shriner for nearly 50 years and was involved with charity work connected to his membership in the Rotary Club during his long professional career as a chartered accountant. Len was an avid traveller and outdoor enthusiast who carried deeply about the planet’s environmental and social challenges.

Hints of Len’s adventurous spirit were seen early. He lied about his age to enlist in the Canadian army during the Second World War. After being discharged at the end of the war, he canoed to New York City from Montreal with a group of pals over his parents’ strong objections.

Len enrolled under a veteran's program at Sir George Williams College in Montreal, where he studied business, leading to his becoming a charter accountant. Starting his professional life in Montreal, he met and married Dorothy Fry. They moved to Aurora, Ont., to establish an accounting firm and start a family.

While living what some might consider a quiet, small-town life, during those years Len started an egg-production operation, tried to launch a new type of laundry soap, developed a bird sanctuary/suburban housing development and, using his skills as a pilot, launched a relief program for Cuba that was infiltrated, unbeknownst to Len, by the CIA, later resulting in two of his partners being arrest by Cuban authorities and spending several decades in prison for illegally importing grenades. Len, who knew nothing of the plot, was lucky not to be on that flight.

In the 1970s, Len’s life entered a new chapter. He closed his practice, divorced and took a job as a controller for company in Guelph.

He met and married the love of his life, Patricia Rideout, a well-known Canadian opera singer. The two soul mates settled in Cambridge, where they spent many happy years together, enjoying travel all over the world untill Pat’s death in 2006. After her death, Len spoke of her every day.

He spent the last decade of his life travelling to visit his family on the West Coast, meeting and making many new friend and volunteering at a women’s shelter in Cambridge, working with the Shriners and lending advice to his neighbours.

His son Jake says a memory from a trip they took to New Orleans to celebrate Len’s 90th birthday summed up his father well. Len was chatting with a new friend, beer in hand, in the middle of a packed street as a raucous, joy-filled “second line” parade passed by. The air was filled with great music. Len looked at Jake, smiling, and winked.

Len is survived by his three children, Cyndy (Peter), Ric (Ghretta) and Jake (Beth), grandchildren Kate and Macy, a host of dear friends and extended family and his dear companion Margaret Clarkson. A memorial service is being planned.
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