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Mourning Dr. Edward Roberts

Message of sympathy on the loss of long-time Memorial friend and supporter

Campus and Community

By Dr. Vianne Timmons

Memorial has lost one of its most cherished friends and supporters, Dr. Edward Roberts (LLD’03).

His contributions to the university cannot be overstated. On behalf of the entire university community, I offer my sincere condolences to his wife Eve, his family, friends and colleagues from more than 50 years in public service.

Significant contributions

His relationship with our university had many layers.

From 1997-2002, he served as chair of the Board of Regents, during which time he was committed to extending Memorial’s built infrastructure and innovative programs in St. John’s, Corner Brook, Bonne Bay and Harlow, helping to grow Memorial into what it is today.

When he assumed the position of lieutenant-governor of Newfoundland and Labrador in 2002, Dr. Roberts became Official Visitor and during that time became a Memorial alumnus, earning a master of arts degree in history.

In 2003 he was awarded an honorary degree in recognition of his outstanding contributions to public life and to the university. In 2009 he was named Alumnus of the Year.

Enriched by his love of N.L.

A black and white image of Joseph Smallwood, Ed Roberts to the left of Joseph and several other unnamed men in suits in the Confederation building.
A young Ed Roberts to the immediate left of Joseph Smallwood (at right). Dr. Roberts was executive assistant to the then-premier.
Photo: Memorial University Libraries

His generosity to the Queen Elizabeth II Library and in particular the Centre for Newfoundland Studies is without equal.

For example, in 2014 he donated a 1767 Capt. James Cook chart that hangs in the reading room for all to enjoy, as he requested. In 2017 he donated a set of miniatures of the Colours of the Newfoundland Regiment as they were during the First World War.

Dr. Roberts entrusted the university with his important political papers covering transformative periods in the province’s history. All of his papers from his university days to the lieutenant-governorship are in Memorial’s archives.

These are but a few of the many ways Dr. Roberts has supported Memorial over the years. We have been enriched by his love of the province and his belief in the importance of our university.

Memorial’s flags are being displayed at half-mast in recognition of his passing. The flags will remain at half mast until sunset on the day of the funeral.

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