It is with profound sadness the family announces the passing of our beloved husband, father and grandfather, Patrick Gregory Saxton. Surrounded by his loved ones, Pat’s courageous battle with pulmonary fibrosis ended at the Toronto General Hospital on Friday, March 24, 2023.
Born in Halifax in 1949, Pat often reminisced fondly about his childhood baseball games on "the Commons" and his many adventures growing up in Beaver Bank. His love and participation in sports remained with him throughout his life. An avid swimmer, scuba diver, coach, runner, golfer, curler, baseball, rugby and football player, Pat’s love of sports was matched by his admiration for the life values they instilled.
Pat was also an academic. He studied history, theology and education at St. Mary’s University, Pine Hill Divinity Hall and the University of Toronto. Pat lovingly shared his lifelong passions for history, theology, astronomy and computer technology with his wife, daughters and grandchildren. He also left an indelible mark on those he worked with over the years. Pat’s CN career began in Truro in 1973 and continued in Montreal a few years later. During his 35 years with CN, Pat played a pivotal role in the design and deployment of AMIS (Automotive Management Information System), developed in the early 1980s and still operational today. Whereas few information systems remain in use beyond two decades, AMIS has continued to deliver value into its fourth decade. Colleagues fondly remember a caricature of Pat drawn on his white board by his daughter, Trish, captioned "Father of AMIS". That caption was studiously guarded because Pat viewed it as the most important item on the board.
What distinguished Pat’s career was not limited to the breadth of his involvement and notable technical accomplishments; it was also his unique personality and ‘way’ with people. He could be confrontational and argumentative when needed, but he was always open to the opinions and suggestions from others. Pat was not very talkative, but when he did speak, each word counted. Pat will be remembered as a man with a unique sense of humor, a man of compassion, integrity, humility, and honesty. He was loyal, hard-working, easy-going, distrustful of pretension and unerring in what he knew was right. He was a quiet man who could convey so much in just a look or a few words. A compliment from Pat had special significance. He accepted everyone, unconditionally, for who they are.
Mostly, Pat will be remembered for the pride he took in his family, especially in being a grandad (GD). Pat is survived by his wife, Linda Lombard; daughters, Tammy (Stephane), Patricia (Keith); cherished grandchildren, Sinead, Gwyn and Maeve Chapdelaine; brothers, Mike (Cathy), Terry (Doris), Shaun, Tim (Liz), Kevin (Kim); sisters, Cathy (Dave), Mary (Greg) and Jen (Don); beloved Aunt and Uncle, Gerald (Tub) and Helena; as well as many nieces, nephews and cousins.
Pat is predeceased by infant brother, Sean; parents, Joe and Jean; sisters-in-law, Tanya and Karen; niece, Kait; paternal uncles, John and Donnie, and maternal uncle, Basil.
A Celebration of Pat’s Life will be held at 1 pm on Sunday, July 9, 2023 at the Royal Canadian Legion Branch 26, 42 Brunswick Street, Truro. All are welcome. Webcasting will be available. In lieu of flowers, donations in Pat’s memory to Royal Canadian Legion Branch 26 are welcomed. The Legion will direct contributions to youth incentives and needs. A private graveside service will be held at Bible Hill Cemetery at a later date. Arrangements have been entrusted to Mattatall-Varner Funeral Home, 55 Young Street, Truro. Private messages of condolence may be sent to the family by viewing Pat’s obituary online and selecting "Send A Condolence" at: www.mattatallvarnerfh.com
"When Thou is spoken the speaker has no thing; he has indeed nothing.
But he takes his stand in relation."