In Celebration of
February 27, 1932 -
April 27, 2023
It is with great sadness that the family of Richard Rothschild announce his passing at the age of 91 years. He will be forever remembered by his wife Karen, their daughters Camilla, Ramona, Chia, son Ivo, son-in-law Hoi, and Richard’s daughter from his first marriage, Karen. Cats Tuxedo and Clarabel are missing him too. Richard left behind a sister Anita, nephews and niece and extended family in the United States, among them Robert and his wife Sandy, who often visited us in Canada.
Richard was born in Germany into a Jewish family. The family departed for the Netherlands where they lived briefly before emigrating to the United States. Richard’s happiest childhood memories included visiting his cousin Herman on his Uncle Otto’s dairy farm in Connecticut. Later on he attended Union College, where he met a dear lifelong friend, Leo.
After leaving the family business, Richard became a trade unionist and social activist. He met Karen, a British immigrant who had come to the United States as a foreign student, on an early morning picket line in New York City. Several years later, Richard and Karen moved to Canada, living in Nova Scotia and New Brunswick. Richard taught high school for many years, bought a hobby farm, and acquired his own milk cow, Boadicea. After his retirement, Richard and family moved to Quebec, where Richard and Karen most recently lived in Hudson.
Richard was deeply committed to social causes and the ideals of justice and equality. While in the United States he was active in grassroots trade union organising and the Reform Democrats in New York City, and in the civil rights and the anti-Vietnam war movements. In Nova Scotia, he was involved in the Nova Scotia Teachers Union. In Quebec, he was involved with PAJU (Palestinian and Jewish Unity) and the Rigaud food bank. With his wife, he travelled to Zapatista communities in Chiapas, Mexico, in 1995, and he always remembered his brief meeting with Bishop Samuez Ruiz in San Cristobal de Las Casas.
Possessed of a sharp and analytical mind and a love of logic and philosophical debate, Richard was modest and humble with a wry sense of humour. A voracious reader of many genres, Richard enjoyed so many things, from philosopher Ted Honderich to fiction by Jonathan Coe, Kazuo Ishiguro, and John Mortimer, as well as the New York Review of Books, to name but a few. CBC radio and classical music, particularly string quartets and opera, were part of Richard’s daily life. He also had a strong appreciation of art.
Throughout his life, Richard gave steadfast support to his family in all circumstances. Great animal lovers, Richard and family shared their lives with very many animal friends over the years, most recently cats, and especially Little O, a feline television enthusiast with a sweet tooth. Richard enjoyed making puns and silly jokes. In recent years, he wrote poetry for the family, creating a new family Christmas tradition of “pick a poem”. His favourite things included: walking in the woods; sipping morning coffee; delighting in birds in the back yard; wandering city streets; conversing intensely about the most fundamental questions; rummaging in used book shops, second-hand stores, and yard sales; collecting another “new” Christmas tree ornament every year; admiring artisan works at fair trade shop Pure Art; and savouring cassoulet, hearty soups, Furley’s sourdough bread, and lemon pie.
Richard’s family would like to extend our deepest gratitude to the extraordinary nurses of NOVA Hudson for their great care and compassion. Donations in Richard’s memory to NOVA Hudson would be very much appreciated.
The family will receive friends and guests on Wednesday May 10th, 2023 from 1 p.m. to 2 p.m. at Belvedere Funeral Complex, 22025 Trans-Canada, Senneville, Qc, H9X 0B2, 514 457-5-44440. A memorial service will be held at the same place and same date at 2 p.m. You are also invited to share memories from 3 to 5 p.m. after the ceremony.