Obituary of Jack Armstrong
Age 85, of West Dover, formerly of Bayside, NS departed this world on May 29th, 2022 after a “long, wonderful life with no regrets.” Born December 17th, 1936 in Halifax, NS, Jack was the son of the late Arthur Webster Armstrong and Gladys Emily (Zinck, Schwartz) Armstrong.
Jack married his love, Mona (Davidson) Armstrong in 1961 after courting for several years. Their marriage was joyful and full of love and laughter, gentle teasing, and mutual respect. They had two children, Colleen and Ian Armstrong, both of Halifax, who are left behind with broken hearts but so many wonderful memories. In addition to his children, he leaves his kind, compassionate wife, Florence (Morash) Armstrong. It was so amazing to see Dad welcome love into his life a second time and “Flomo” experienced the same second chance at love and companionship. They travelled to Ireland, Alaska, Newfoundland, and Louisiana, and thoroughly enjoyed each other’s company, whether it being having restaurant breakfasts (Dad’s favourite), visiting with friends, or simply sitting and doing sudoku puzzles in the evenings. Dad felt so grateful to have met Florence and his children embraced their relationship and were so overjoyed to see their father happy again (and not lonely).
Jack was predeceased by his former wife, Mona, his brother, Laurie Schwartz, sisters-in-law, Heather (Davidson) Giffin, Yvonne (Murphy) Schwartz, and brother-in-law, Marty Raine. He leaves behind not only his children and wife, Florence, but his brother-in- law, Basil Giffin, his sister-in-law, Helen Raine and his two stepsons, Vernon (Alice) Morash and Robin (Katherine) Morash. Many nieces and nephews are feeling the loss as well, and Dad had an exceptionally close bond with the ‘Schwartz crew’ as we were neighbours in Bayside for many, many years. Dad had many wonderful friends and neighbours throughout the years and will be missed dearly.
Jack was an electrician by trade and later in his career, worked as an Electrical Inspector for the Province. Although he ‘retired’ at age 65, he continued to do contract work for the government well into his 70s, mainly on large school and hospital projects. Dad made sure everything was ‘to code’ and was a perfectionist when it came to his job and his reports.
Jack loved his sports with a passion. When we were children, I have very vivid memories of my dad crawling around the house with sprained ankles from ball. He continued playing ball (taped ankles before every game) for many years and was a Goalie in the Prospect Road Oldtimers League until he was 73. He was President and Treasurer of the League and prided himself on keeping everything organized and ensuring that no man was left behind due to any sort of financial hardship. We spent many years at the Spryfield Rink, cheering on our silly Dad as he skated out of the net yelling, “Oy, Oy, Oy” trying to cut down the angles and heckle the opposing players. Dad loved his Detroit Red Wings and his Blue Jays and learned how to ask Siri for updates on Jays games when he could no longer see well enough to watch. Dad also taught his children how to use a mask/snorkel in the bathtub and was an avid scuba diver for many years, his last dive being with his daughter, Colleen, in Mexico, when he was 77. Dad was so relaxed as a diver and along with Mona, passed on the love of all thing’s ‘ocean’ to his children. Dad was also a fierce competitor at any card game and thoroughly loved teasing his opponents whether he was winning or losing. Nothing was better than beating dad in a game of hearts or crib and he taught his children how to be good sports, on the field/court and at the card table.
Dad was an amazing pianist, hearing a song once and being able to pick it out on the piano and play with such an innate sense of grace and mastery. He harmonized beautifully with every song he deemed ‘worthy’ and was known to thump his foot so hard at concerts that he had to be poked often at the Rebecca Cohn (by Colleen) because he was shaking the entire row of seats before the Cohn was renovated. Dad played piano every single day when we were children, and we all sang and danced to his beautiful music.
Jack also got his motorcycle license when in his 60s and took many long road trips with his close friend, “John-Boy”. Mona even rode as passenger several times which was surprising and very funny. John was also one of Dad’s many dive partners over the years and they thoroughly enjoyed each other’s company and laughs.
Some of Dad’s fondest memories included our weekends “up the shore” in Marshville, Pictou County. We kids could ride our bikes without restrictions, and we swam, snorkelled, and enjoyed campfires at our trailer, bon fires at the beach, and a whole lot of adventures and exploring where safety was not a concern. All of the summer residents knew one another, and the parents all looked out for the children, whether they were their own or not.
Dad was very clear when he stated that he had a wonderful life and felt so fortunate to have had such happiness and was grateful for all of the good people he had met and cherished throughout his journey. He did not want to be remembered with sadness or tears and hoped that the great memories, silly rhymes/songs, and stories would continue to be shared after his passing. He truly had no regrets and felt that life was, indeed, beautiful and that love, laughter, family, and friends were the reason for being.
Thank you, Dad, for being such an amazing father, husband, uncle, and friend. You’ve brought so much laughter, compassion, music, and joy into the lives of so many people. Your presence was larger-than-life, and you’ll be terribly missed.
Jack’s family would like to thank the nursing staff and wonderful CCAs on 8A at the V.G. for caring for Jack during his final days. A special shout-out to Kim (CCA) who Dad dubbed, “Macho Man”.
A Celebration of Jack’s life will be held on Sunday, July 10th at the Fellowship Centre (attached to the Bayside Baptist Church, Bayside, NS). The gathering will commence at 1 pm and there will be refreshments and music. As per request “wear a splash of colour”. We’re hoping that some friends/family will be willing to share a story or memory during the afternoon. Please let the family know if you would like to speak.
A private internment at the Bayside Cemetery will follow at a later date.
Donations in Jack’s memory can be made to the Bayside Care Group c/o Linda Mosher, 34 Faders Road, Bayside, NS, B3Z 1L7 or if you prefer to e-transfer, to firstname.lastname@example.org.