Surrounded by his loving family, Alan Harvie MacIntyre died on November 2nd, 2017 in Kingston, Ontario; he succumbed to complications from Parkinson’s Disease.
Alan was the loving husband and soulmate of Ruth (nee Umetsu) for over 50 years, a devoted father to Shawne (Tom), Kyle (Ashley), Courtney (Lucas) and Meredith (Richard) and a proud grandfather to Ryan, Grayson, Levi, Isla, and Jax. He is missed by his brother Crawford (Sylvia), mother-in-law Mary, many nieces and nephews, and numerous close friends.
Born in Scotland during the war, he and his family immigrated to Toronto in 1952. Despite his appreciation for order, civility, and respect, Alan’s early years in Canada were ones of rebellion and defying authority. These characteristics would later drive his career as he challenged the status quo in the pursuit of something better.
Inspired early on by working with children with complex needs, Alan found his calling in social work and he eventually graduated with a Masters of Social Work from Wilfrid Laurier University. In 1976, he became the Executive Director of Stratford Family Counselling. Beginning with just three staff, Alan worked to partner with other organizations to provide counselling services for those in the community. Under his leadership, the agency became Family Services Perth-Huron and grew to two hundred staff by the time he retired in 2005.
Alan’s work with children with multiple needs continued throughout his career and led to one of his many accomplishments - the creation of the Rotary Respite House in Stratford, Ontario. In partnership with the Rotary Club Stratford, Alan spearheaded the building of this home where families can find short-term respite in a safe environment for their children.
For his service to his community, he was awarded the Paul Harris Fellowship from the Rotary Club, which recognizes outstanding contributions to the community.
Alan’s compassion extended to animals and nature, and this presented itself early in his life; he entertained his children with the story of how, as a youngster, took on a gang of local boys in an effort to defend a beehive from their sticks and rocks. As a newly-wed, he brought home a scraggly stray cat which became the family pet, Waif, for the next thirteen years. He ensured his children learn to respect nature when he taught them to thank the fish they caught from Buck Lake before eating them at one of their much loved fish frys.
Alan had an impish character and to his delight, would occasionally embarrass his wife and children with his public imitations and antics. Generally lacking a filter and a lover of the absurd, Alan had a unique sense of humour, shared by his many close friends.
In 2005, Alan and Ruth fulfilled their lifelong dream of retiring to their spiritual home on Buck Lake. A place of plentiful trees, cold lake water, and many species of birds and animals, Alan’s spirit will continue to fish from his boat and sunbathe on the deck on his beloved Buck Lake. We hope he visits us in our dreams.
In lieu of flowers, donations in Alan’s memory can be made to the Rotary Respite House care of the Family Services Perth-Huron (donations can be sent to 142 Waterloo St. South, Stratford, Ontario, N5A 4B4) or your local Humane Society and would be greatly appreciated.