Robert (Bobby) Hass relaxes in the beautiful Saturday afternoon sun March 9. He died in a tragic snowmobile accident the following week, March 14, near Foymount.
An Admaston-Bromley businessman is dead following a March 14 snow machine collision in Brudenell, Lyndoch and Raglan Township.
Robert Hass, 47, was snowmobiling with friends last Thursday afternoon when his machine struck a tree.
Officers and paramedics attended the scene on motorized snow vehicles where the victim was pronounced dead.
The Killaloe detachment of the Ontario Provincial Police responded to a call to Britches Lake, off Quadeville Road, at about 6:25 p.m. last Thursday to investigate the snowmobile accident.
Hass’s wake was held at the Goulet Funeral Home in Renfrew Sunday afternoon and evening, and Monday morning before the funeral service at Our Lady of Fatima Church.
Sunday’s wake was a testament to Hass’s popularity as long lines of family, friends and the business community braved the bitter cold to attend the visitation.
Hass’s sister, Brenda Davis, said the family appreciated the outpouring of support.
“Every person who has come through has had story after story, just talking about his laughter,” she said. “His enthusiasm was just so infectious.”
Hass, who was a plumber by trade, was an avid outdoorsman.
“Any time an opportunity came to be involved in some kind of outdoor activity – hunting or fishing – he was part of it,” his sister noted.“And it has been pretty incredible because the friends he’s had – we call it the Lisgar/132 Strip – those boys have stuck together since they were five and they’re still pouring in here.
“Those boys, from the age of nine or 10, were in the scrap yard, all playing together, so we tried to put up so many pictures around the home, not just of family life, but of friends because, you know, he had four sisters but he had 40 brothers I think,” she added with a smile, “They’re going to be left with a huge void from him not being around.”
Davis recalled her brother as someone who was fun-loving and generous.
“His laughter was infectious, his enthusiasm was infectious, and certainly his generosity, because he would do anything he could for anyone.
“It’s incredible to hear the contractors, the local businesses, just how many people he’s either worked with, or for, or been involved with. Just to see that many people coming out today and having people lined up around the block in this cold weather is just such a testament to his personality,” she said.
She said the sisters are very proud to have a brother that they love so much that was so well liked in the community.
Meanwhile, the family remains at a loss as to what may have gone wrong.
“Right now, the cause of the accident, we just can’t explain. The boy grew up on anything with a motor. “The only reason we can justify is that it may have been something medical; something that caused him to lose consciousness.
“There is just no way to predict how it happened. We talked to the people who were there and everything was fine and he wasn’t going fast,” she said.
Hass and some close friends have a hunt camp in the Foymount area and were showing another friend around the area at the time of the mishap.
“As far as they were concerned, they were just going across the lake and then they were going to come back. It was just a leisure drive,” she said.
“Any way we wrap our brain around it, we just can’t explain it because anything with a motor, Bobby had been operating it since he was a kid.”
Davis also noted three of her brother’s favourite places – the hunt camp, his cottage at Douglas, and sitting around a kitchen table with his buddies.
Hass had been snowmobiling the previous weekend with his cousin Leo and told family members what a wonderful day that had been. The family now treasures a couple photos from that weekend.
“Bobby was never one to give words and vivid descriptions but he said it was his favourite day; it was the most beautiful day the Saturday before. He said they were snowmobiling all day and it was just gorgeous out. He loved that Saturday,” she said.
They also got pictures of Hass with a bulldozer he had been rebuilding and had just completed on Wednesday.
He was also looking forward to the St. Patrick’s parade in Douglas.
“He missed the Douglas parade, which would have crushed him, because that was his plan,” Davis noted.
The son of James and the late Theresa Hass, he is survived by his wife Carol Brisbois and daughters Sarah Wilson (Chris Olmstead) and Maggie Wilson.
He is also survived by sisters Susan (Terry Steele), Jenny (Peter Quevillon), Anne (Brennan Trainor), Brenda (Chad Davis), grandmother Rose Hass, and many aunts, uncles and cousins.
People had the option of donating to Groves Park Lodge or The Bob Hass Memorial Fund. The memorial fund is care of the Pinnacle Animal Hospital and donations to the cause will provide financial aid for pet owners in need of assistance.
“This is such a testimony of Bobby’s character as he was a lover of all animals, but especially his pet. “He had a heart of gold and this was best shown when he was surrounded by animals,” his sister Brenda concluded.