Robert John Ireland
1952 - 2024
Robert John Ireland
Service Information
Service Time
The family is planning a gathering, and a garden party in his honour at a later date.
Requested Charity
Doctors Without Borders / Médecins Sans Frontières Canada (MSF).
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It is with great sadness that we announce Rob’s passing, peacefully with his family around him, on Wednesday, January 17, 2024.

Rob was born on July 14, 1952 to parents Donald and Edith in Birmingham, UK. He spoke often of the rabbits and other pets they kept in the garden, the summer holidays they took, and helping his dad to grow vegetables. After completing undergraduate and graduate studies in and around London, he emigrated to Canada in 1977, where he first worked at Queen’s University, Kingston, then at Carleton University in Ottawa.

In 1979 he met Laurel, they wed in 1982, and Kate was born a year later. In 1984 they moved to Sackville, NB, where Rob took up a position as Professor of Biology at Mount Allison University. Graham was born the following year.

Teaching was Rob’s calling. He was a born teacher and mentored many students and new faculty members over the years until his retirement in 2020. He enjoyed keeping in touch with former students, following their careers with interest.

Rob was a great dad. He enjoyed family board games and loved goofing around with the granddaughters. One of the greatest gifts he gave his children was expanding their understanding of the world through his love of books and travel which he shared with them. Rob enjoyed a variety of hobbies – curling, stamp collecting, ham radio – and particularly gardening and growing orchids. Over 37 years he and Laurel built a beautiful ornamental and productive garden. He was seriously into composting, and was ever so happy puttering around with the veggies. He was a licensed ham radio operator for over fifty years, keeping in contact with friends all over the world, and locally through the Westcumb Amateur Radio Club.

Rob was predeceased by his parents, and is survived by his brother Kevin (Kate), his wife Laurel McIntyre, children Kate (Martin) and Graham, and granddaughters Émilie and Anya. 

We thank the many healthcare providers who helped Rob over the past several years, particularly the staff at the Léon-Richard Oncology Centre, the QE11 Health Science Centre, and the NB Extra-Mural Program.

Arrangements are under the care and supervision of Jones Funeral Home, 70 Bridge Street, Sackville, NB (506-364-1300).  Following Rob’s wishes there will be no service. The family is planning a gathering, and a garden party in his honour at a later date.

Should you wish to do so, please plant a tree in his honour, or donate to Doctors Without Borders / Médecins Sans Frontières Canada (MSF).

Sharing of memories and condolences may be sent to the family by visiting the online memorial at or through the funeral home Facebook page.


Robert John Ireland