David Simon Gruber

March 22, 1951 – March 7, 2022
In loving memory ~
At a time when the world needs us to hold more compassion for one another than ever before, we lost an extraordinary soul who embodied selfless and unconditional love when Dave went peacefully to the great gig in the sky.
Dave’s early years were spent between the homes of his engineer father’s in Ottawa and dancer mother’s in Toronto. He was privileged to grow up in multi-cultural neighbourhoods surrounded by conservatives and communists, feminists, local and touring artists, performers, and musicians. He spent many happy summers at camps and his beloved Aunt Silvia’s family cottage in Bobcaygeon, where he enjoyed fishing and canoeing. Growing up in the city gave him access to some of the best concerts and experiences of the 60’s, like the time he met Jim Morrison when The Doors were in town. Whether he was playing, listening, or traveling to concerts, music was the cornerstone of Dave’s life. He saw all the best bands and had the t-shirts and bootleg tapes to prove it.
From a very young age, Dave was called to work with vulnerable youth. His humble and humanizing approach was rounded out by a Master’s in Social Work, and it was his career that brought him west. Before becoming part of the local colour of Nelson in 2011, Dave lived and worked in Kelowna and Red Deer. Dave volunteered with Victim Services and supported many grassroots initiatives for equity and social justice: he believed wholeheartedly that every human is worthy of our time and respect. Even as his memory betrayed him, he never forgot the names or faces of the folks on the street he had taken the time to get to know. The number of kids and families he helped throughout his lifetime is incalculable, and the difference he made in the lives he touched is evident in the assemblage of people who survive him as family.
Dave truly was one of a kind and will be missed by all who knew him. There is consolation in knowing he will always be with us in the smallest of kindnesses, sharpest of wits, neatest of scotches, finest of flowers, and over in the far-right depths of the volume dial. Dave’s life will be honoured and celebrated in his beloved Nelson when it’s safe for all to do so. In lieu of flowers, the family asks that you consider buying a coffee for someone on the street or just spotting them a five without asking how they’ll spend it.
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