1952 ~ 2021
With great sadness the family of James Denzil Stuart announce his passing in Edmonton, Alberta on Monday, November 22, 2021 at the age of 69 years, after a prolonged period of dementia.
Jim or Jamie was predeceased by his parents, Ramsay and Margery Stuart; and his brother, Chris Forster.
He is survived by his sisters, Helen Stuart (Barry) and Jane Carruthers (Neil); nephews, Stuart (Becky) and Reid; niece, Grace (Adam); as well as great nephews, Luke and Marshall; and great niece, Azaleia.
Jim grew up in Bon Accord, and had many friends in the area. Anyone who knew Jim would instantly recognize his great sense of humour, cutting wit, and uncanny ability to do impersonations! He could be quite charming and his grinning smile was infectious.
Jim began travelling in 1972, and lived overseas for 40 years in New Zealand, Japan, England, and Cambodia, as well as travelling extensively in Europe and S.E. Asia. He taught English, spoke fluent Japanese, and he earned his Black Belt in karate. Jim taught himself to play the guitar and became an accomplished guitarist.
He returned to Canada in 2012, in ill health and lived in various facilities due to his dementia. While at one such facility, Jim became bored in the confines of the garden courtyard, so he jumped the fence and started to run laps around the adjoining vacated schoolyard. The staff were frantically calling to him over the fence – “James! Please come back!”. Jim would jog past them and declare, “I’m running laps – if I were running away, I’d be running in a straight line!”
He later moved to Spruce View Manor in Gibbons where the staff and many of the residents, made Jim feel at home and would help him if he got confused. One dear lady, Margaret Houghton, adopted Jim like a son, taking him to the Legion for a beer, where he was a popular dancing partner, or “dragging” him down to game night.
Though very self-deprecating, Jim had a strong sense of social justice and throughout his travels he continually helped people who were underprivileged. He was often instrumental in helping young teens to get jobs that would not normally be available to them, thereby saving them from abject poverty.
He remained true to his roots, as a decent and kind man, but his temper never failed to flair up if he saw an injustice being done! At Schonsee Lifestyle Options, the staff and other residents became part of his family, particularly when Covid restrictions curtailed visits. One of the staff expressed her deep regrets at his passing. She said, “We will really, really miss him!” What a fitting tribute to a life that was well lived and lived on his own terms.
Jim’s family would like to extend our deepest gratitude to the doctors, nurses, and caregiving staff who were involved in his care over the last 10 years.
At Jim’s request, there will not be a funeral service, in lieu of flowers, anyone who wishes, can make a donation to the Red Cross or to the Alzheimer’s Society, with our deepest appreciation. Helen, Jane, and family.