With a heavy heart I must announce the sudden passing of my dear husband Herb. An unforeseen incident while vacationing in Mexico in early February has taken him from me. After 40 years of being together he will be forever missed. He has been called the “gentle giant” by many. His career varied from technical positions, to sales, to entrepreneur and business owner. He was an editor to many book authors, and an author himself. Over the years he was a Director on various boards and committees, some of which included Steel City Sport Divers, The Haida in Hamilton, ACUC Instructor Advisory Committee, and most recently he accepted a post with the Tobermory Chamber of Commerce.
Herb was born in Hilversum, Holland in 1955. At the age of 2 his parents, along with his sister Alice, travelled to Canada in search of a new start. Herb spent his childhood and adult life living in the Hamilton and Burlington area. During our early married years, we simply had fun. Most of our spare time was spent scuba diving, hiking, rock climbing and exploring caves on the Niagara Escarpment, the Bruce Peninsula, and West Virginia. Hiking was a favorite past-time of his. In the early years we completed the Bruce Trail and West Coast Trail together. Travel has always been a part of our lives, and were many of Herb’s happiest times. There was no place he didn’t want to go. He would only ask what he should pack for – cold, warm, wet or dry?
After visiting Tobermory for almost four decades we finally ventured here in the summer of 2017 to live year-round. We love this little town and the time we have spent here. For the last couple of years Herb found himself a little piece of heaven working at the Hyperbaric Facility. He always left for work and came home with a smile on his face. Herb was a kind man, an excellent teacher, and a respected leader in business. The people he worked with came to admire and respect his talents and insights. He was co-owner of The Holst Equation Inc., Fiscal Integrity Group Inc., Holst Continuum Inc., and owner of Quantum Holst Inc. Herb was also a gentle giant to animals and the environment. Many times, supporting charitable organizations and taking up their causes.
Our pets controlled his actions and they played him well for his affections. As for me, I don’t know how many times I felt grateful that we found each other in 1980. I couldn’t have asked for a better husband, adventurer, and best friend. We rarely argued over the years and when we did it was over quickly. I knew every one of his buttons to push and I took pleasure in pushing them.
Herb is survived by his sister Alice and brother’s Garry, Ben and Don. His father John passed away last year at the age of 96 and his mother will reach the age of 88 in 2020. She continues to live in Hamilton. Herb and I have been blessed with a loving family, many friends, great staff, clients and colleagues over the years. I want to express my humble appreciation for all the support I have received since that fateful day from people here in this community, Hamilton and the many distant places that Herb has touched through the years.
A celebration of life will be held on May 30th, 2020 @ the Powerhouse Restaurant & Pub in Stoney Creek from 1:00 – 4:00 pm.