JAMES HER­BERT I RWIN

The Globe and Mail (Prairie Edition) - - BIRTH AND DEATH NOTICES -

Born Au­gust 27, 1959 in Brace­bridge, died Oc­to­ber 7, 2018 at home in Toronto. James was the son of Dr. H. J. “Luke” Ir­win and Alice Joan Western of Oril­lia. Also known as “Bunt”, James was a born racon­teur, writer and ad­ven­turer at heart. He was a vo­ra­cious reader, with a keen in­ter­est in his­tory and pol­i­tics, and gave away as many books as he “bor­rowed.” Above all he was a man who en­joyed life, knew what made him happy, and loved to laugh. James at­tended high school at Saint An­drews Col­lege, Aurora and CJC in Lau­sanne Switzer­land, where he made many life­long friends. He grad­u­ated with a de­gree in po­lit­i­cal science from Queen’s Uni­ver­sity, and be­came a re­porter in his home­town of Oril­lia, be­fore mov­ing to Ot­tawa to be­come par­lia­men­tary as­sis­tant to a Bri­tish Columbia based M.P. In 1991 he set off to Sin­ga­pore on a brief free­lance as­sign­ment that led to a 13-year stint in Asia, and a ca­reer that spanned pub­lic re­la­tions and jour­nal­ism and ul­ti­mately a po­si­tion at the En­ergy In­tel­li­gence Group, re­port­ing on global en­ergy trends from Sin­ga­pore and Wash­ing­ton D.C., and most re­cently in Toronto as EIG’s Canada cor­re­spon­dent. He counted him­self supremely for­tu­nate to have met his wife Trish (who fell for his wit and charm), while work­ing in Hong Kong. Their sons Mack and Tom were born in Hong Kong and Sin­ga­pore and were the heart and cen­tre of his life. James seized ev­ery op­por­tu­nity to travel and ex­plore. He sailed, ca­noed, skied, played ten­nis (win­ning a com­pe­ti­tion in Hong Kong for the fastest serve), soft­ball and hockey, and when there was no ice, ball hockey. In H.K. he joined a win­ning dragon boat crew. He raced on a four-man team along the 100-km MacLe­hose Trail, hiked ev­ery­where from the Blue Moun­tains of Aus­tralia, to Nepal and Sri Lanka, to Hadrian’s Wall and fi­nally the en­tirety of the Bruce Trail. How­ever ex­otic his trav­els were, he al­ways re­served as many weeks as pos­si­ble ev­ery year for time at his favourite place, the cot­tage in Honey Har­bour. With the help of his fam­ily, Bunt man­aged to spend his last sum­mer in the place he loved best. Be­sides Trish, Mack and Tom, James leaves be­hind a great col­lec­tion of fam­ily and close friends who can’t be­lieve he is gone: His si­b­lings Pamela (Gord Brown), Deb­o­rah (Brian Har­ris), John Jared (Katie Fuller­ton), and Peter (Jen­nifer Fen­wick); Amy Cody and her sis­ters; his cousin Mary El­iz­a­beth and fam­ily; his nieces and neph­ews (Sarah, Alice, Olivia, Brid­get, Henry, An­drew, Peter and Ni­cholas), his grand-nieces and neph­ews (Isaac, Abi­gale, Os­car, Si­mone, Loïc and Ella) and the Say­well and DeNure fam­i­lies. We in­tend to cel­e­brate James’ life as he would have wished - with a party at The Royal Cana­dian Yacht Club, 141 St. Ge­orge Street, on Novem­ber 3rd from 5-7 p.m.

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