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Wednesday November 23, 2011

It is with profound sadness that the family announces Barry's passing. He died peacefully at his home in London, ON, on November 20, 2011. Barry was surrounded by his immediate family. Husband of Martha Steers of over 59 years. Barry, missed by Sara (Bob), Greg (Anne) and Con (Sue) and seven grandchildren, Tamber (Jennifer), Claire, Ryan, Charlie, Sophia, Pilar and Gabriel, and great- grandchildren, Graydon and Arabella, his brother Kevin (Peggy) and sister, Mary and many relatives in Canada, Colombia and elsewhere. Predeceased by his parents, Connell and Kathleen Steers. Each posting abroad enriched their lives and each city became a home. From the comfort of his hometown of London, Ontario, Barry grew to become as happy in the back streets of Rio de Janeiro and Tokyo as in the hubs of New York City and Toronto. Of particular importance was the commitment and support of his wife Martha throughout his career. He joined the Canadian Trade Commissioner Service in 1956, and during his career, was posted to Singapore, Greece, Israel and the Canadian Consulate in New York. Following a posting home to Ottawa, he served as Canadian Ambassador to Brazil from 1971 to 1976, as Canadian Consul General to New York from 1976 to 1979 and concurrently, as Commissioner to Bermuda. From 1981 to 1989, Barry was the Canadian Ambassador to Japan. Wherever Barry served, he was committed to Canada yet embraced the people and customs of the countries where he and Martha made their home. Among various achievements, he was awarded the Public Service Award of Outstanding Achievement (The Prime Minister's Award) and an Honorary Doctorate of Laws from the University of Western Ontario, his and Martha's Alma Mater. Following a distinguished career in the Civil Service, Barry became an advisor to many companies and served as a Board Member of London Life, CP Hotels (Fairmont), Canadian Pacific Airways, Gendis Corporation, Manalta Coal and International Bank of Japan, Mizuho, Canada among others. Barry also participated in various public organizations and charities, that included serving as Trustee of the Royal Ontario Museum, Trustee of the Canadian Opera Company, and of particular importance, a Board Member of the Gatineau Fish and Game Club, adjacent to his and Martha's cottage in Quebec, long the family's point of reference. Barry was a wonderful husband and a guiding light to his children, grandchildren and the many others he touched in his long and compassionate life. While he will be missed, his presence is so strong that it will endure throughout the rest of our lives. We loved him, love him and will miss him. The family would like to thank the support and services of Medical Priorities of London, ON that helped Barry and Martha through these last difficult months. Visitors will be received at the John T. Donohue Funeral Home, 362 Waterloo Street, at King Street, on Wednesday from 2-4 and 7-9 p.m. A Funeral Mass will be celebrated at St. Michaels' Catholic Church, 511 Cheapside Street, on Thursday morning, November 24, 2011 at 10 a.m. Interment St. Peter's Cemetery. Prayers Wednesday at 3:30 p.m. A luncheon reception will follow interment at the London Club - 177 Queens Avenue. In lieu of flowers, memorial gifts can be made to the Barry C. Steers scholarship fund at Foundation Western, The University of Western Ontario - Westminster Hall, Suite 110, London, ON N6A 3K7.

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