Robert "Bob" McDougall Barnes
1926 - 2024
Robert "Bob" McDougall Barnes
Service Information
Service Location
June 20th, with more information to come.
Requested Charity
Charity of your choice
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With deep sadness, the family of Robert "Bob" McDougall Barnes announces his death on Wednesday, May 1, 2024, at the age of 97. He passed peacefully, with family at his side, at the Cumberland Regional Health Care Centre.

Born in Amherst on August 28, 1926, Bob was the only child of the late Lloyd and Daisy (McDougall) Barnes.

After completing high school in 1944, he worked at the Canada Car and Foundry Wartime Aircraft Plant before enlisting in the Royal Canadian Navy Volunteer Reserve (RCNVR). During this time he developed an avid interest in flying and aviation, owning and flying the Cornell 6F-FES. From 1946 until 1963 he flew with a private pilot license. In 1949 he developed an even greater interest in an adventure-seeking young lady named Shirley Clarke. In addition to his many fine qualities, he impressed her by performing airplane stunts while she flew along as a passenger. They married later that year.

At the end of the war, he attended Pictou Veteran’s School as well as Acadia University. He worked in the insurance field from 1948-1954, then worked at Enheat (Aircraft Division) until 1963. He returned to insurance, became an adjustor and later branch manager at Major Adjustment Bureau. He was claims manager for Douglas, Rogers Ltd. from 1973 until 1978 when he went to Amherst Insurance Agency as a broker. In 1989, he and partner Garry Stack founded Barnes Insurance Agency (later Archway).

Very much a community minded person, Bob served on numerous boards and commissions in Amherst and Cumberland County over the years. These included the Amherst School Board, Amherst Recreation Commission and the Voluntary Planning Board.

He also served as a director on the Regional Hospital Foundation Board, as campaign manager of the Amherst United Way, and was involved with the Downtown Amherst Revitalization Society (DARS).

He was President and Honorary Life Member of the Amherst Chamber of Commerce.  A dedicated member of the Rotary Club of Amherst for many years, he served as President and received their Distinguished Service Award.

He was a member and served as Clerk of Session at Trinity St. Stephen’s United Church.

He was a longtime member of the Liberal Party.

Later in life he served on the board of directors for the Joggins Fossil Institute.

A summertime resident of Parrsboro, Bob’s involvement there included being Chair of the Ship’s Company Theatre, President and Honorary Life Member of the Parrsboro Golf Club, and member of the Parrsboro Harbour Commission.

Bob was an avid golfer for well over seventy years and enjoyed meeting a variety of people on various courses.  Perhaps most significant was the Parrsboro Golf Club, located near his family’s summer cottage.  He followed in his parents’ footsteps on the golf course at a young age, and played until he put away his clubs in his late eighties.

In his athletic youth, Bob pitched for the Wartime Twilight Baseball League and in 1946 the Legion Ball Team.  He coached and refereed in the Amherst Minor Hockey Association. He enjoyed recreational skating and cross-country skiing.  

Bob was a natural people person. He saw the best in others, and thus cultivated a wide variety of friends and acquaintances who were very important in his life. He appreciated music, particularly big band and jazz, and he and Shirley regularly attended many balls and dances.

He was an interested and loving father to his four children and their families. Always keen to go for a walk or hike, he instigated frequent family outings. All his children grew to value the outdoors and became committed walkers as well.

Bob was a principled man with many fine qualities. He served as a good example for his family and many others and was a special soul indeed. We were most fortunate to have him for so long. He will be greatly missed and forever in our hearts.

Bob was predeceased by his beloved wife Marion Shirley (Clarke) Barnes.

He is survived by his children: Sheri (Rick) Bromer, Parrsboro, Connie (Eric Rose) Barnes Rose, Montreal, Robert Barnes, Gerlach NV, USA, and Janice (Jeff McCartney) Barnes, St. Lazare, Qc., and grandchildren: Sarah (Bill Mericle) Bromer, Jessica Bromer, Anna Rose (Fabi Gompf), Carmen (Kim Ho ) Rose, Claire McCartney and Steven McCartney, great grandchildren: Arthur, Theodore, Lumi and Koda, as well as many nieces and nephews.

Bob’s family would like to express their gratitude to the staffs of Centennial Villa and Northumberland Hall (Shannex) for their kindness and compassion throughout his final 8 years.  We would also like to thank Palliative Care Nurse, Amy Thurston, for her guidance and care during his last week at the hospital.

We give special thanks to our aunt (his sister-in-law), Anne Crowell, for her much appreciated weekly visits, and to Martha Huston who kindly saw him regularly as well.

Arrangements have been entrusted to the Jones Family Funeral Centre, 70 Church Street, Amherst, NS (902-667-8777).  A remembrance celebration for Bob will be held June 20th with more details to follow.

If desired, memorial donations may be made to the charity of your choice.

Sharing of memories and condolences may be sent to the family by visiting Bob’s online memorial at or through at the Jones Family Funeral Centre Facebook Page.