It is with broken hearts that we announce the death of our dear Dana on August 6, 2021 in Barrie, Ontario.
Dana was born in Val d’Or, Quebec to his Nova Scotian parents, Al & Lorraine (Sullivan) Randall on October 13, 1952. Our family moved to Elliot Lake in 1957 so he grew up running wild in the woods, rocks and bush (and black flies) of northern Ontario. He ran fast as a youngster, probably due to his prankster tendencies and his small build. His quick wit and charm no doubt saved him from any number of run-ins with tough guys or authorities. Smart with no desire to overly apply himself, he found particular skill at public speaking and became president of his school council.
After a Political Science BA from York U. he travelled, worked in Toronto and created a home and family with Leslie Randall. Next up was a law degree at Osgoode Hall Law School (1985). As a ‘mature’ student he persevered with sweat and grit and articled at Sack Charney Goldblatt Mitchell (1985/86) He was a lawyer and policy advisor for the Ontario Ministry of Labour (1987-1989), Lawyer at Sack Goldblatt Mitchell (1989-1992). Adjudicator at the Office of Adjudication, OML (1992-1998)
In 1997 Dana became a labour arbitrator and mediator, putting aside partisan politics to show up fairly for management and unions. No easy feat for a long-time leftie from the 60’s. He laboured intensely over writing decisions with a perfectionist’s desire to get it right and provide justice. His practice was primarily in Ontario, however he also served in Nunavut. Dana was well-respected and his work was characterized by his finely-honed sense of fairness and his ability to grasp complex and sensitive issues. Confidence in his judgement as an arbitrator was reflected in the fact that he was frequently selected as an interest arbitrator, where he set the terms of collective agreements in circumstances where the parties were able to agree on those terms. He was also a skilled mediator, often able to forge a voluntary agreement where the parties found a dispute to be intractable. Dana was a cherished colleague of Ontario arbitrators.
Colleagues have written touching condolences, describing him as: a gentleman; thoughtful and fun; a little crazy, in the best way; a firm hand in a silky glove; careful, measured, modest; and having “touched my life with humour, insight and wisdom”.
Dana’s children, Jocelyn and Calder, are kind, thoughtful and sensitive people. Often referring to their dad by name, they can’t imagine a world without Dana’s guiding sense of friendship, fairness and love. Movies, board games, music and sports were often a meeting point but deeper conversations were regularly sparked and Dana seemed to choose points of view carefully to challenge them and hone their intellect. Moments shared always ending with “I love you’s”.
We all remember great trips with him – always game to see new places and chat up and humour everyone along the way. Cheap to a fault he was often teased about his latest Value Village suit jacket or crumpled pants, his rundown cars and removing every kernel of corn from the cob. He loved to dance and jumped in with gusto at any opportunity. His neighbours were always befriended, trades people treated with great respect. He was skilled in the garden and the kitchen.
Dana suffered his whole life with allergies, migraines, depression and physical ailments. He was vulnerable in the face of life’s loves and losses. Finding abiding pleasure in life was difficult, as was receiving help. Covid removed a lot of engagement with colleagues, friends and extended family. We honour his resilience through it all.
He will be missed by his children Jocelyn (Tim) & Calder (Kayla) of Barrie, brother Robin(Catherine) of Collingwood and sisters Pamela MacIntyre and Martha Randall(Daniel) of Toronto. Three nieces Alison (Brian), Daphne & Dylann, two nephews Jay (Marie) and Christopher (Ana) and all their children (Kyra, Solenne, Torin, Devyn, Simone, David, Christopher) will feel his absence. As will Pat Milewski, a friend since childhood who shared a lifetime of laughs with Dino. And more recently he was shown great care and friendship from Toni Barr and his Executive Assistant Sheila Miller.
Dana, we love you.
The honour of your company is requested by the Randall family for a Celebration of Life ceremony. We will gather at 42 Wellington Street West on Saturday, September 25th from 12pm-4pm.
At the ceremony, you will have the opportunity to share your fondest memories of Dana.
Light refreshments will be provided and masks will be encouraged.
Please let us know if you are able to attend by emailing The.Randall.Family@hotmail.com