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"BOM" 2008 Obituary


BOMBARDIER o@ca.on.york_county.toronto.globe_and_mail 2008-01-05 published
KANDER, Gerhard
While vacationing in Jamaica, Gerhard KANDER passed away at 7 a.m. on January 1, 2008. He celebrated New Year's Eve with his wife Dr. Claire BOMBARDIER, her sister Hélène BOMBARDIER and niece Myriam RICHER, at midnight they wished each other Happy New Year and he never woke up in the morning. Gerhard was born in Germany on August 27, 1921 an only child; he became a professional violin soloist at age 13. In 1939 he escaped to England but his parents never made it. The 'camp boys' (other Jewish refugees) became his family. In Canada, he had the good fortune of being adopted by a wonderful and generous Toronto family: Mr. Kaspar FRASER (founder of Fraser and Beatty law firm, now Fraser, Milner, Casgrain) and his wife Lois McPHEDRAN. He eventually became an investment advisor (recently with CIBC World Markets) but continued to play the violin every day of his life. Visitation will be held at their home on Saturday, January 5th, Sunday, January 6th and Monday, January 7th between the hours of 4-7 p.m.: 18 Strathearn Boulevard in Forest Hill (Spadina Road and St. Clair Avenue West area). A memorial service will be arranged at a later date. In lieu of flowers, donations can be made in Mr. KANDER's memory to either of the following charities: The Arthritis Society ( or The Arthritis and Autoimmunity Research Centre Foundation

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BOMMEL 2008-06-24 published
In loving memory of a dear husband and father, John VAN BOMMEL, who passed away 1 year ago today, June 24th, 2007. It has been a year since you have been gone There's not a single day that goes by That you are not deeply loved and missed. Forever in our hearts, Rose, Ryan and Michael.

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BOMS o@ca.on.york_county.toronto.globe_and_mail 2008-04-05 published
McLUHAN, Corinne (born LEWIS)
(April 11, 1912-April 4, 2008)
Died peacefully of natural causes at her home in Wychwood Park surrounded by her family. She was the beloved and loving wife and confidante of the late Marshall McLUHAN (1980;) dear sister of the late Carolyn Lewis WEINMAN (1996;) devoted and loving mother of Eric (Sabina ELLIS), Mary, Teri, Stephanie (Niels ORTVED), Elizabeth (Don MYERS,) and Michael (Danuta VALLEAU;) proud grandmother of Jennifer Colton THEUT, Emily McLuhan BOMS, Anna and Andrew McLUHAN, Claire and Madeleine McLuhan MYERS, Arthur, Mark, and Gwendolyn McLUHAN; and great-grandmother of Olivia, Charlotte, and Gillian.
Corinne was known for her beauty, grace, intelligence, wit, and Southern charm. She embraced life fully and enjoyed many rich experiences and wonderful Friendships along the way. Born in Fort Worth, Texas, Corinne proudly remained an American all her life. She graduated from Texas Christian University and went on to do graduate work in theatre at the leading drama school of the day, Pasadena Playhouse in Pasadena, California. It was there that she met her future husband, Marshall McLUHAN, a graduate student at Cambridge University in England, who had travelled to Pasadena to visit his mother, a drama coach at the Playhouse.
The family wishes to extend its heartfelt thanks to Doctor Wendy BROWN, for her years of unflagging and tender care, and to special caregivers Sally, Bona, Tasie, Amy, and particularly Cynthia, who has stayed at Corinne's side day and night for the last four years.
There will be a funeral mass at Holy Rosary Church, 354 St. Clair Avenue West on Monday April 7 at 1: 30 p.m.

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BOMS o@ca.on.york_county.toronto.globe_and_mail 2008-04-19 published
She was Marshall McLUHAN's great love ardent defender, supporter and critic
An aspiring actress from a privileged Texas family, she was swept off her feet by a young Canadian academic who would lay the cornerstone of modern media theory. She later edited his first big book
By Lisa FITTERMAN, Special to The Globe and Mail, Page S11
When she was young, Corinne Lewis McLUHAN won a Mary Pickford look-alike contest, but woe betide any person who assumed that there wasn't much more to her than masses of dark hair, a wide smile and a disarming southern drawl. For Mrs. McLUHAN, actress, English teacher and wife to the unbending, irascible and brilliant Marshall, looks were just the medium in which she packaged a sharp intellect, a steely will and enough spirit to elope with a man who did not impress her upon first introduction.
"He was six-feet, two-inches, thin, with a little moustache," she once told a television interviewer. "He was very self-contained and very British, all with this peculiar Canadian accent. I thought he was the strangest duck I'd ever met!"
No one in her family, at least, ever envisioned her, a southern belle from Fort Worth, Texas, falling in mad love with a skinny, awkward academic from Edmonton with a penchant for poetry. After all, she was a direct descendant of one of Fort Worth's founders, while her great-grandfather had been the state's first carriage manufacturer and her own father, Charles Wallace LEWIS, provided a more-than-comfortable living for his family as the chief financial officer of the local Swift and Company packing plant. From her father, young Corinne learned to how to shoot and hunt, while her mother, the feisty Corinne Keller LEWIS, raised her and older sister, Carolyn, in the tradition of the Daughters of the American Revolution, complete with its motto of "God, Home and Country."
In this rarefied world, scholastic excellence was lauded, as was churchgoing and the pursuit of hobbies such as theatre. In high school, young Corinne was always a top student but she was also a key member of the drama club called the Vagabond Players, both directing and performing in plays such as Seven Keys to Baldpate, a whodunit by George M. Cohan for which the tagline was "Mystery writer and blonde… too scared to kiss… in mansion of fear!" In The Constant Wife, an extramarital farce by W. Somerset Maugham, she played Martha Culver, a prickly, cynical spinster who doesn't trust men one bit.
After graduating from high school in 1930, she was offered scholarships to several universities elsewhere in Texas, but her parents pressed her to remain in Fort Worth, where she attended Texas Christian University, completing a degree in general arts and pursuing her interest in drama. She also won poetry-recitation contests and honed her talent for public speaking.
Throughout, she had any number of gentleman callers, but she wasn't at all interested in living what she knew for the rest of her life. Rather, she decided to pursue her dramatic studies further, ending up in Pasadena, California, which had a well-regarded theatre school. There, a meeting with a teacher would change her life forever: Elsie McLUHAN, Marshall's mother and a force in her own right, had arrived to run a class after directing at a theatre in Detroit. At once, she decided the younger woman was the perfect match for her intellectual son, who was coming to visit her.
"She told me he was very handsome," Mrs. McLUHAN recalled in a Canadian Broadcasting Corporation radio documentary. "She invited me over a lot and generally promoted our togetherness."
As part of their courtship, he would pick her up in Pasadena and drive to the countryside, where they'd lie on the grass and read poetry to each other. They hadn't been going together for very long when Marshall, who was working on his master's degree at Cambridge University, had to go back. He proposed marriage. She responded by suggesting that they write to each other for a while first. "But no, he wanted me to go with him or forget about it," she would say in another documentary about her husband. "I wasn't used to this kind of treatment. What made this man tick?"
In the end, she said yes. On August 4, 1939, they tied the knot she telegraphed her family the news only after the deed was done. "Mother knew they'd never accept him," said Stephanie McLUHAN, the fourth of the couple's six children. "Her family never particularly accepted him. Texas and Canada are still pretty different."
The newlyweds honeymooned in prewar Venice, sailing through the canals with gondoliers singing at the tops of their voices - until they descended one morning from their hotel room to learn that war appeared imminent. Their next stop was Paris, but they soon felt compelled to leave there, too; as Mrs. McLUHAN quickly packed, her husband ventured out to get provisions.
"He came with a bottle of Benedictine and a basket of pastries," she recalled in the same documentary. "We took the last train out of Paris and a boat across the Channel, which was crammed to the gills. We were the only ones with any food or drink on hand. We arrived in London the night before the war was declared, and then went down to Cambridge where we stayed for the year."
He got his master's in January, 1940, and though he would begin his doctoral dissertation soon after, the outbreak of war led the university to grant him permission to complete it in North America; it would be granted three years later without him having to travel back to make a defence. The couple sailed for the United States, stopping in St. Louis for a year because he had to work at a local university.
In 1944, they moved to Windsor, Ontario, where Doctor McLUHAN taught at Assumption College. Two years later, he joined the faculty at Saint Michael's College in Toronto. In the 1950s, he began to give the Communication and Culture seminars that would lead to the establishment, in 1963, of the Centre for Culture and Technology the university did so because, by then, Doctor McLUHAN was so famous he was receiving tempting offers from other institutions.
Mrs. McLUHAN was her husband's most ardent defender, fan, critic, editor and love. A staunch patriotism, an even stauncher faith in God (like Doctor McLUHAN, she was a convert to Catholicism) and an impish sense of fun would help guide her throughout her life, through the raising of six children and through the leaner years before her husband gained renown. She never renounced her U.S. citizenship and prayed regularly, while author B.W. Powe, who first met her in 1978 at a Christmas party at the McLUHAN home in Toronto's tony Wychwood Park, recalls that she was in the kitchen, spiking the punch with lots of alcohol.
"She poured and sang," Mr. Powe wrote in an e-mail. "You must picture her: tall, elegant, with a Texan drawl and that bright, broad smile, much laughter in her face. There she was, singing and pouring in the alcohol so that we, Marshall's grads, would no doubt happily reel out into the good Christmas night."
The McLUHANs were devoted parents, although Stephanie McLUHAN speculates that her mother's experience as a stage director must have helped, for it was she who did most of the day-to-day raising of her and her siblings, of listening, disciplining, bandaging and counselling. Her husband may have popularized terms and phrases such as "global village" and "the medium is the message" but he was stymied by the sheer noise of children, sometimes even retreating to a table in the backyard when weather permitted so he could work in peace and quiet.
"They expected us to excel," said Stephanie, who now runs the Canada Institute program for the Washington, D.C.-based Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars. "Mom was a voracious reader and a real confidante to my father. She edited his first major book, The Gutenberg Galaxy. Dad was a stellar verbal person but when he sat down to write, he needed help.
"They had a real partnership in addition to marriage," she continued. "Dad just adored her."
In 1979, Doctor McLUHAN suffered a stroke that robbed him of his ability to speak, read and write. While it broke his wife's heart that they couldn't continue the intellectual discussions they'd been having ever since they first met, they continued with their regular walks around Wychwood Park. She would guide him and he'd stay fast by her side - just like it had always been.
Corinne Lewis McLUHAN was born April 11, 1912, in Fort Worth, Texas She died April 4, 2008, of natural causes at her home in Toronto. She was 95. She leaves her children: Eric, Mary, Teri, Stephanie, Elizabeth and Michael. She also leaves grandchildren Jennifer Colton THUET, Emily McLuhan BOMS, Anna and Andrew McLUHAN, Claire and Madeleine McLuhan MYERS and Arthur, Mark and Gwendolyn McLUHAN, and her great-grandchildren, Olivia, Charlotte and Gillian.

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