On the morning of March 2, 2023, Robert Mark (Bob) Sharen of Stratford, Ontario, formerly of Grand Bend, Ontario died at the age of 83.
Bob was born in Wallaceburg, Ontario to Jean and Newman Sharen on the anniversary of Custer’s last stand, June 25, 1939. He joined the Royal Canadian Army Medical Corps in 1959 where he met and married an RCAF nurse’s aid, Verna Sharen (nee Holden). Together they raised four children. In 1962, he retired from the armed forces and became a pharmaceutical sales representative. He fondly referred to this career as his “dope peddling years”. The family moved to Grand Bend in 1970, when Bob bought the family business, Sharen Realty, from Newman. He and his daughter Trish made vacation dreams come true for many people over the years.
In the soap opera of Grand Bend, Bob was one of the leading characters. He was a council member and then Reeve (Mayor) for several years. He was known to punk total strangers in the drug store, convincing them that he had met them previously. Bob was a talker. He held court in his office tossing around ideas with the rich and the famous and the low and the struggling. He was funny, engaging, charismatic, and charming. A few days before he died, he instructed us to check the lottery tickets and to have a party.
Bob is predeceased by his mother, Jean, his father, Newman, his sister Jay, and his daughter Jenny. He is survived by his wife Verna, children Colleen, Trish (Dale), and Andrew (Maggie), and by his grandchildren Molly and Ethan. He is also survived by many cousins, nieces, and nephews. He adored his grandkids, and convinced them that money grew on trees. Before they came to visit, he would sprinkle change on the ground beneath two trees. The kids loved finding the money and putting it in their piggy banks.
Many thanks to the staff at Cedarcroft Retirement Home and to Dr. Reaume, Dr. Joshi, and the staff at Grand Bend Medical Centre.
Visitation will be held at Haskett Funeral Home, 370 William Street, EXETER on Sunday March 5th from 2 – 4 PM. Registration is required and appreciated. To register, please click “Register Now” below.
A public funeral will be held at St. John’s by the Lake Anglican Church, 70642 Ontario St North, GRAND BEND on Monday March 6th at 11 AM. Registration is not required to attend the service.
In lieu of flowers, please make a donation to Heart and Stroke Ontario or the Stratford General Hospital Foundation in Bob’s memory.
Bob was truly one of the kindest. He was a friend to my mother ( Barbara Southcott)and helped her out often. Definitely a legend that really cared about the Grand Bend community. He made so many positive changes and brightened many lives. He will be deeply missed.
Thinking of all the Sharen family during this sad time.
So sorry to hear of the passing of your father Trish. He was an amazing man. He will be missed by so many.
Our deepest sympathy.
Sincerely, Donna and Gary Martin
Deb and Dan Pargeter
Our sincere condolences to Bob’s family. Dan and I met Bob when they were at the Sarnia Bluewater hospital after their strokes. Along with Doug, who shared the room, they made quite the trio. They shared many laughs and stories which made being in the hospital a little more comforting.
Sharon Family, we are so sorry to hear of Bob’s passing. His dedication and interest in Grand Bend is appreciated by so many. He will be missed. Our thoughts and prayers are with you.
Karn Durdin and Don Thornton
Verna, Trish, Colleen and Andrew: It is with a heavy heart and profound sadness to hear of Bob’s passing . Bob lived a lifetime filled with joy, challenges, obstacles and opportunities. Please take comfort knowing as a family you did everything possible to keep him comfortable especially over the last four years. I remain grateful to have had him as a friend. I will remember his integrity, dignity towards others, kindness and candor. May the memories of Bob’s life grant you courage and endurance in the days ahead.
Sending Bob Sharen’s family & friends my heartfelt condolences. He was a generous and kind man. I got to know Bob when I was working at the McDonald’s in Exeter. He often would gift certain young workers with monetary envelopes to help them save for post secondary education and such. I thought, how lovely.
I really enjoyed my many chats with Bob. He was a really good guy and always went out of his way to help people. I am so sorry for your loss. Our thoughts and prayers are with you.
A truly unique gentlemen in so many ways.
Thank you Bob, for sharing so much of yourself with so many.
Sincere of thoughts and prayers to all the Sharen family.
We have wonderful memories of a good friend.
Ernest and Nora Lewis
George and Sue Wilson
Verna and family, heartfelt condolences on your loss of Bob. He was a very friendly, knowledgeable man. Our daughter worked for him in the 1990’s for awhile at Sharen Realty. He was a great boss. Cherish your precious memories. You are in our thoughts and prayers. George and Sue Wilson and Cathie Wuerth
To the Sharen Family,
I’m saddened to learn of Bob’s passing. It was a privilege to know and learn from Bob. He was a gentleman with a warm smile and a twinkle in his eye. Bob was a wealth of knowledge and a kind thoughtful soul who made every feel special.
Bob leaves a great legacy of family, business and service.
He’ll be missed.
Verna and Family;
We learned of Bob’s passing today. We wish to express our sincere sympathy. Bob was a kind and generous man. We are glad that we had the opportunity of knowing him.
Robert and Alma Westlake
Bob was a pleasure to work for many years ago during a co-op placement. A man of routine that loved his community.
I am sorry I only learned of Bob’s passing today. He was a good representative of Grand Bend and one of the first people I met when I moved here. In fact, he sold me several homes and properties.
Bob was definitely a character and I well remember many times when I didn’t know if he was serious. I don’t believe he ever met a stranger.
He has been missed from the Village for some time and I know he will be sadly missed by his family. Please be assured that he was well respected and cared about by those who knew and dealt with him in Grand Bend.
I was saddened to I heard of Bob Sharon’s passing and wanted to express my condolences to the Sharon family. Although Bob and I were frequently on opposite sides of many municipal issues, he was always polite, respectful and very insightful. He cared deeply for his community and took on many causes. There was never an issue that was too daunting for Bob to tackle. His legacy is the positive impact that he had on his beloved Grand Bend.
Rest in peace my friend.
Verna and Family. Our sincere condolences to all of you, Our thoughts are with you at this time.
Condolences to Trish and family. We will miss Bob’s stories and his sense of humour. He always had a smile for us and something positive to say. He loved Grand Bend and his community.
Murray Willits and Jane Girodat
To the family: I am very saddened to hear of Bob’s passing. Please accept my condolences at this time.
lou and betty
Lou @ Betty Nigh Our thoughts and prayers are with the Sharen families at this time.
Steve and Nancy Turnbull
To Verna and the Sharen Family So Sorry for your loss of Bob. Our thoughts and prayers go out to you. Steve and Nancy Turnbull
Sending condolences to Bob’s family and friends.
I first meant Bob in 1992 I was seventeen years old and I worked at Mr. Mugs. He was such a nice man with a big heart. Every time I would run into Bob we would have a nice chat and sometimes over a hot chocolate. He was so involved in the grand bend community. He will be missed.
The Reverend Stephanie Donaldson
Dear Verna, Colleen, Trish and Andrew, it has been a great honour and privilege to spend time with Bob over these past two years. The adventures we re-lived, the stories he told, no one loved Grand Bend more than Bob. His dedication and service to the community was an inspiration. You are in my heart, thoughts and prayers. He is sorely missed.
Heart felt sympathy to the Sharen family, as you mourn the loss of an extraordinary man.
My wife and I met Bob years ago, when we were on the market to purchase a Grand Bend property. Bob’s gentle and caring manner was so much appreciated. It was a privilege to call Bob our friend.
May Bob’s legacy carry on, by his family and friends, in the wonderful community of Grand Bend.
Wally and Jose Coeck
To the Sharen family who is grieving the loss of a wonderful man, Bob.
We offer our sincere condolences to you all. Verna you have an awesome family that will be there for you, and to our dear friends Trish and Dale we are sending you our love. Wally and Jose
Rob and Cathy Taylor
Thanks to Bob, we have enjoyed 31 years of sunsets and beach days at our cottage on the lakefront in Southcott Pines. It only seems like yesterday that he contacted us and said,” I think I have the place for you and it is yours if you want”. Over the years he always stayed in touch with us and he was our number 1 source of Grand Bend news.
He was a wonderful friend !!
Rob and Cathy Taylor
Bob & Mo Laidlaw Grand Bend On.
Our heart felt condolences to Verna and the entire family. Bob Sharen was a very special human being.
Behind the chatter was an extremally sincere and charitable man. Bob cared so much for the municipality and the people who resided here. Bob sometimes tried to hard to make everything right
but at least in trying he truly cared for our well being and living conditions in this beautiful resort area.
I will personally miss Bob more than any other I have come in contact with over my 33 years of residence in this local. We need more Bob Sharen’s to assure that we all communicate and care for
our great community. Bob Sharen I thank you for your service , I will miss you and your knowledge
deeply. Your forever friend.
Sincere condolences to all the Sharen family. Thanks for your years of service to your community and the Grand Bend you cherished
Bev and Barb Shipley
Susan Greig and Mark Davenport
Our deepest condolences to the Sharen family. We always enjoyed when Bob dropped by to chat. He will be remembered and missed.
Peter & Patti Welsh
We first met Bob at Trish & Dale’s first official neighborhood party. It was there that we formed a friendship. He was avid about making sure children from families that could not afford computers would have one. He received computers no longer used by companies, refurbished them and gave them to students. His computer for kids program brought joy to many families. Trish & Dale we are sorry for your loss. We will miss his stories and his enthusiasm. We will keep you in our thoughts and prayers.
Bob was one on my oldest Grand Bend friends and he was a very unique individual. A chat with Bob
was something you didn’t forget in a hurry.
Hi sense of humour, his love of the Bend and people from all walks of life will be greatly missed.
My condolences to Verna and the family.
I am very saddened to read of the passing of Bob. He was a very kind man who befriended my husband, Bob, and I when we came to Grand Bend in 2008. The two Bob’s spent many hours talking municipal politics, they certainly stirred things up!
Sincerest condolences to Verna and all the Sharon family.
Wyndy and Sue Haines
Our condolences to the whole Sharen crew! Bob helped us to find a place in Grand Bend to settle into “ the lakeside life style”. His patience with and kindness to us was truly amazing! Everything he did was out of love for our special community of Grand Bend. We will miss him and his witty conversation!
Our thoughts & prayers are with the Sharen Family. I remember him coming to the flower shop, he’d lean in and quietly tell us kids something (like it was a secret) it’d always turn out to be a joke of some kind.
Dad was always coming back from a important “meeting” down at Cheryl Ann with(Dennis) & Bob. He left big shoes to be filled.
Dear Andrew , Maggie, Molly and Ethan.
So sorry to hear of your loss. I always enjoyed your father’s/grandfather’s stories and his sense of humour. Aunt Jane and I are in Aruba and won’t be flying back to Toronto until March 6th…so we’ll be unable to attend the service. Please give each other a big hug for us and hope to see you soon, Uncle Dave.
Trish and Sharen family, My deepest condolences at the passing of Bob. He was a friendly, knowledgeable, and passionate man who will be missed by many. May he rest in peace and may his memories comfort you. Carmela
Such an amazing soul! My condolences xo
Our deepest condolences to all the family. Bob was a great friend to my father Stew Clutton. Always had stories that’s for sure. He can now meet up with Stew and share a few more stories. Greatly missed
Bob always called me Sir James. Was honoured to have known him. Kathleen and my thoughts are with you all. We are unfortunately (not really) on a cruise ship in the Caribbean Monday. We will raise a glass to Bob Monday.
One of the nicest men you would ever want to meet. My condolences to all the family. Bob was a character and will be missed.
I’m completely devastated with this news. My life long friend and “comrade in crime” attending many Council meetings searching for the truths for many things. Bob and Verna were always a hit at our many Open Houses and I missed and it broke my heart when Bob moved to Stratford and I could no longer have many, many coffees and long discussions. He kept me going after my mom died in 1991 and always looked after me! My many, many phone talks over the last couple of years are burned into my memory! I’m going to be lost without you my dearest friend. Be at rest now my dearest friend.
My condolences to you and your family on your loss. My thoughts and prayers are with you. May his soul Rest in Peace and his memory be eternal.
My sincerest condolences to the Sharens, and especially to Trish and Dale whom I knew best. Bob was spirited last time I saw him – true to his nature. I will fondly remember him, his stories, shocking questions and silly jokes that I was subjected to (laughs) when I met him in community places.
Sharen Family my sincere condolences to all of you Bob was a great person and very knowledgeable he will be missed
Sharon and Doug Kyle
Always enjoyed a chat with Bob. Our sincere sympathy to all of you.
Doug & Karen Courtney
Always remember talking to Bob for long stretches at the Grand Bend Post Office…What a wealth of knowledge. Our condolences to all the Sharen Family. Doug & Karen Courtney.
My prayers & thoughts are with Verna & family at this difficult time
Bob was a Good friend & Business associate for many years
His Exceptional wit & stories are going to be missed by many
RIP Dear Friend
Bill & family
Jim and Darlene Lynn
Trish and Dale: Our condolences to you and the rest of your family, particularly Verna. I enjoyed a number of lively discussions with Bob, particularly when he was trying to convince me to open a branch in his beloved Grand Bend. Always a smile and a joke as well as his take on the people and politics of Grand Bend. He was indeed a legend.
My sincerest condolences to the Sharen family. I enjoyed many great conversations with Bob. Even when we agreed to disagree, Bob would always listen attentively and respectfully to my point of view. Bob was a great storyteller. He would wax knowledgeably and humorously on a great many subjects. Though our service was a generation apart, we even traded a few soldiers’ stories. Bob will be sorely missed.
Bernie & Bella Bray
Our sincere condolences to all, our thoughts are with you, fond memories to cherish.
Our Thoughts and Prayers are with
Chuck and Janis