Roy Schatz – Obituary


It is with great sadness that we share the passing of Roy Edward Schatz, who died peacefully at home surrounded by his family on September 30, 2021.

Roy was born on November 7, 1931, the first of two children of Harvey Franklin Schatz and Violet (Merry) Schatz. Predeceased by his loving wife of 60 years, Diana; he is survived by daughters, Laura (Cameron Binkley) and Joanie (Geoffrey Belisle); son, Roland; and grandchildren, DK, Roland, Abbey, Michelle, Delaney, and Riley. He is also mourned by his best friend and sister, Ruth Cox; her family; and many cousins and their families.

Roy had many passions in life – education, music, tennis, Georgian Bay, community service, and, most importantly, family and friends. Having graduated from the University of Toronto (U of T) with a Masters degree in French, he dedicated his entire career to furthering excellence in teachers, students, and the education system. His grammar skills were second to none and he took every opportunity, be it meeting minutes, children’s schoolwork, his children’s letters from camp, or Diana’s work, to correct grammar (whether invited to or not).

It was fitting that he met the love of his life, Diana, at U of T, during a production of Gilbert & Sullivan’s The Mikado. Together with pianist and conductor Clifford Poole, he founded the St. Anne’s Music & Drama Society (MADS) in 1963 and appeared in each of the first 57 annual productions, either in the ‘patter song’ lead roles or in the chorus. The consummate showman, Roy was never happier than when he was sharing his love of music with others.

Roy was a legend both on and off the tennis court. He played tennis weekly in Toronto and at the family cottage. He was renowned for organizing the men’s morning tennis games and he loved to use his operetta voice to announce, “make this your last game, gentlemen.”

He dedicated his time and wisdom to community service and helping others tirelessly and enthusiastically. He was President of more than 20 organizations dedicated to education, St. Anne’s Church, seniors, the community, and his beloved Georgian Bay. He fought as an advocate and protector of Georgian Bay and the work he started and supported continues today. Even in his final days, he was still working on the community dinner at St. Anne’s Church and with the Georgian Bay Great Lakes Foundation.

Although Roy had many passions and loves in his life, his family was the most important. He was the most wonderful husband, father, brother, uncle, and ‘Papa’. Nothing brought him more joy than being all together, particularly at the family cottage in Pointe au Baril (‘PaB’), or in his younger years at Peacock Point. PaB was his happy place. He raked his beach for hours to ensure it was pristine for guests. He especially loved when all the grandchildren and their friends would come to enjoy his world-famous “Roy Boy” cookies and to swim at his beach. This was pure joy for him.

There is sadness at his passing, but we can take solace in the fact that his was a life lived truly to its fullest. Roy’s pure joie de vivre was matched only by his constant dedication to making the world around him a better place. His legacy will be the countless lives he touched and brightened along the way.

A celebration of life is planned for Spring 2022, when it is hoped that we will be able to gather and celebrate his life properly.

For those who wish to donate to Roy’s favourite causes, they are Georgian Bay Great Lakes Foundation and St. Anne’s Church Restoration Fund.