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Keith Avon Bryans

1938-2020

Keith Avon Bryans
Passed away peacefully at Grand River Hospital in his 82nd year. Beloved son of the late Dr. William Russell Bryans and Helena Elizabeth (Drager) Bryans. Dearly loved brother of Dr. Franklin Bryans, Phyllis Armitage (Howard), Barbara Burns (Larry) and inspiring uncle to Victoria Bryans, Charlotte Kingsford-Nendsa (Chris), Angelina Bryans Krasnay (John), Liam Bryans, Renata Burns, Alanna Armitage (Jorge), Derek Armitage (Suman), and great uncle to Sasha, Sebastian, Alexander, Carson, Danika, Alejandra, Maximiliano, Aidan and Anika.

Keith was born in Brussels and lived with his family in Guelph and then Seaforth until the age of 16 when he moved to Orillia and then to Cambridge where he lived happily for 38 years in the care of Community Living Cambridge. Keith touched the hearts of many with his infectious smile, twinkling blue eyes and love of life. He participated with enthusiasm and determination in every activity provided - bowling, bingo, picnics, attending musicals, summer camp and day trips to Blue Jays games, the aquarium and CN Tower.

Keith loved trains, planes and cars and favourite activities included trips to Wendy’s with staff and driving in the countryside after visiting Tim Horton’s for coffee with his sisters. He was especially fortunate to enjoy the company of one of his devoted CLC workers, Nancy Newton-Smith, who with seasons passes, took Keith on countless train trips to the Halton Railway Museum. A major highlight organized by Nancy, was the thrill of flying in a Cessna 150 out of Waterloo Wellington airport.

A love of music was a gift for Keith and, like his late Mother, he played the piano and harmonica by ear. After his move to Parkwood Mennonite Home in March 2018, Keith enjoyed weekly trips back to Cambridge for the day program and participated in the new Music Therapy program.

It is not possible to name every individual who knew and cared for Keith or the ‘family' group who shared his life on Lauris Avenue. However, in addition to Nancy mentioned above, we do want to say an extra special thank you to Kelly Frontera who has known and loved Keith for several years and without whose devotion his move to Parkwood would have been extremely difficult. And to Kelly Wylie who was another equally loving and devoted caregiver with Keith for more than 20 years in the day programs of CLC.

Sadly, pandemic restrictions did not allow family or loving friends to visit Keith the past three months although Phyllis was grateful for a final visit before he died. Keith’s indomitable spirit will live on with all of us.

Our sincere appreciation and special thanks to Elizabeth Piccinin, Director of Parkwood Mennonite Home, who facilitated Keith’s weekly trips back to CLC and to all the kind and helpful caregivers and staff at Parkwood. Our sincere thanks to the caring and empathetic medical team at Grand River Hospital.

A private ceremony will be held at Maitland Bank Cemetery in Seaforth, ON. As an expression of sympathy, a donation to Community Living Cambridge would be appreciated.
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