March 17, 2018
On January 7, 1951, in Summerside P.E.I., Mama G proudly presented Papa G and their two beautiful daughters with a baby boy, Terry. Papa G was in the military and two years later his family was posted at Chatham, in the picturesque Miramichi region of New Brunswick. There they welcomed two more sons and a daughter. Terry thrived in, as he came to call it, “The Frontier,” enjoying the natural attractions and becoming an enthusiastic participant in many sports. He was an active, bright, healthy child, full of dreams and promise. As an adult he followed his heart and had many adventures in various locales. He eventually settled in the big city (Toronto) and pursued a career in healthcare. But, as Terry would say, “the kicker to this story is” that despite his healthy upbringing and subsequent career in healthcare, a few years before he retired Terry started becoming afflicted with various medical issues. Subsequently he was lost in “the system” and sadly, on March 17, 2018, Terry Anthony Grondin, passed away. He left us suddenly but peacefully with his beloved niece, Rebecca, by his side. Terry is survived by his brother, John (Teresa) and three sisters, Sharon (Gerry) McCormick, Judy (Tom) Scott, and Ruth McLeod. He was the proud uncle to Sean, Michael, Tony, Andrea, Cara and Rebecca and great-uncle to Alex, Hailey, Mitchell and Gregor. Terry was predeceased by his parents, Antoine Romeo Grondin and Dorothy Norma Grondin (Grenier), brother Michael and niece Connie. In his earlier years Terry was quite the energetic scamp who grew into (as lovingly described by his younger sister) - a BRAT. He was constantly pulling pranks on his younger siblings. Not surprisingly his tendency to naughtiness carried over into school. At a gathering about ten years ago one of his teachers spotted “that little rascal Terry” and regaled all around with stories of his antics. Aside from the trouble making, even when he was younger, Terry had a responsible side. He had a few part-time jobs including a large paper route and like his brothers, did a stint in the upholstery shop Papa G had opened when he retired from the military. It was during this period that Terry developed an interest in refinishing antique furniture. Terry embraced sports. From a very young age he enjoyed swimming and was an avid baseball and hockey player (for which he received numerous awards and trophies). Terry especially excelled in hockey and in the mid-60s participated in camps with other promising youth where he was instructed and coached by some of his idols including Jacques Plante and Scotty Bowman. These athletic passions continued into his teens. And as with most teens, when he got older his interests branched out. He volunteered as a sports representative for Teen Town (the youth organization on the base), little league coach and lifeguard. He took up pool, ping pong and broomball and became so adept at pinball that he’s been referred to as a “pinball god.” Despite being such a jock, Terry was also a bookworm; he enjoyed reading and learning. In 1973 he received a Bachelor of Arts in English from St. Thomas (Fredericton). Twelve years later he returned to St. Thomas to take courses in social work. When Terry began to establish himself in Toronto, he enrolled in a program at George Brown College to follow in the family business and earned a certificate in Furniture Upholstery & Repair in 1991. He briefly opened up shop but being a people person found the work somewhat isolating so returned to George Brown, receiving an honours certificate in Health Care in 1993. Until his retirement, Terry worked for Surex Community Services for 20 years providing care, support and assistance to adults with developmental disabilities in a residential setting. The folks in his care had communication challenges but Terry found ways to engage them through the music he brought to work and played for them. He was very fond of his charges and they of him. Terry also cultivated many passive interests. He was a voracious reader, always having a book in progress. He kept his local second hand bookstore well stocked because several times a year he would bring a few large duffel bags crammed full of books he had bought new for them to resell. He followed current events, at one point reading several different newspapers daily as well as watching newscasts. And of course he liked to talk about what was going on with whoever he could engage. He also couldn’t pass up trouncing his friends at backgammon. Terry appreciated many simple pleasures in life like spending time yakking with family and friends and making people laugh as much as he enjoyed a good chuckle himself. That’s not to say he didn’t like a good party. Terry could be both annoying and endearing at the same time and it was partially this quality that enabled many long time friendships to endure. He was very loyal and generous with those he cared about; a down-to-earth man with basic values and a sense of honour. His wedding to his high school sweetheart Linda English in 1972, hosted at his parent’s home, was a reflection of his devotion to family and unpretentious nature. (Although their union did not last, their affection for each other endured to this day.) Of course, anyone who knew Terry for any length of time knows you can’t speak of him without talking about his relationship with cars. He loved them but they hated him. He drove them relentlessly and although they tried to teach him lessons, he never learned. Terry is renowned for his automotive mishaps. More than one vehicle went by the wayside while Terry was at the wheel. A favourite family story is the time Terry came home for a visit from university coincidentally the same weekend that Papa G had just picked up his shiny new Plymouth VIP. When Terry arrived his parents were entertaining so his father asked him to pick up his younger sister at Teen Town and gave him the keys to his new ride. Terry picked her up and they went for a test drive. Taking the corner to go on the bridge at 110, he smashed into the guardrail and tore all the chrome off the passenger side; Ruth was almost sitting on him because her side had been so bashed in. When they returned Papa G jokingly asked, “How much damage?” At which Terry turned a lighter shade of pale and whispered to his sister, “How did he know?” To his father, Terry replied, “I picked her up - see? But as I was backing out I hit a couple of garbage cans.” Papa G got up and went to see his baby. When he returned, he mixed a very strong drink, sat down and said, “Terry, were the cans on a truck moving very fast when you hit them?” Nothing else was ever said about it. But they laughed a lot over the years remembering it. Terry’s photo albums are a testament to the things that mattered most to him in life. They are filled with memories of family (especially nieces and nephews, all of whom he adored), cherished friends, the beauty of the natural settings he visited, the museums filled with new wonders he experienced and many concerts he enjoyed. And always there was the music. To say Terry loved music is an understatement; mildly obsessed is a more accurate description. His “tunes” were the constant background to his life and through the years he amassed large collections of records, tapes and CDs. He played the records so much they sounded like bacon and eggs frying but that didn’t diminish the attraction they held for his nephews, Sean and Michael, who would sneak into his old room when they visited their grandparents to spend hours in awe pouring over the albums. Terry also went through a period when he played drums maniacally and even performed in several garage bands. He was such a band fan; not only could he list all the songs by his favourite bands, but the musicians that played in each band through their evolution and where they were touring at the time. Southern Rock was a favoured genre and he was very enthusiastic about Van Morrison, Little Feat and the Neville Brothers. He loved a good concert, especially Government Mule, one of his favourite bands. It didn’t matter that he was born in P.E.I., Terry was a son of the Miramichi. He truly loved the area and no matter where he hung his hat, always spoke of home with pride and fondness. One of his favourite spots in the Miramichi was his place on the Little Bartibog, which became known as The Cabin, a gorgeous setting where he loved to entertain, go tubing in the summer and snowshoeing in the winter. Terry was a nature lover; he loved being outdoors and had a great respect for the environment. He especially enjoyed going for long walks with his niece Rebecca, expanding her vocabulary while he taught her about nature. She particularly recalls learning about environmental consequences and the word “debris” when she was a preschooler. As they stood on a wharf of a river Terry had often swam, he was disgusted at how filthy it had become, exclaiming to her, “Look at all the debris,” and a discussion ensued. (He would also brag about teaching her to identify an elephant as a pachyderm before she learned the word elephant.) Another of Terry’s happy places was The Farm, the family retreat of his long-time friend, Bob Parlee, in Debec (N.B.) and his brother Don. They shared many pleasant times together - swimming, golfing, walking through the forest and of course yakking and listening to tunes. Even when he moved into the concrete and asphalt jungle of Toronto, Terry settled in The Beach, an urban enclave on Lake Ontario where in just a few steps he was able to enjoy ambling through ravines or along the boardwalk by the lake and catching rays on the shore. According to Terry's wishes, his ashes will be scattered. His family welcomes you to join them in The Miramichi this summer to honour him and his final request. Please check back for details in mid-June. Terry will be forever missed and always in our hearts.
On January 7, 1951, in Summerside P.E.I., Mama G proudly presented Papa G and their two beautiful daughters with a baby boy, Terry. Papa G was in the military and two years later his family was posted at Chatham, in the picturesque Miramichi... View Obituary & Service Information
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On January 7, 1951, in Summerside P.E.I., Mama G proudly presented...View More
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