Dresden mourns loss of beloved lifelong resident

Gary Carroll, a beloved resident of the community of Dresden, passed away on Monday, November 28, 2022. (Photo via Badder Funeral Home)

The community of Dresden is mourning the loss of a beloved lifelong resident.

Gary Carroll passed away surrounded by close friends at the Chatham-Kent Health Alliance on Monday, November 28 at the age of 68.

“Gary was a friend to the entire community of Dresden and will be dearly missed by many,” read the obituary.

Carroll suffered from a stroke in February this year, however, further testing revealed he had a brain tumour.

As word spread about Carroll, a friend of his, Cindy Brewer, decided to generate some support for him via social media.

Brewer asked residents to write a note or make a personal card or send a store-bought one to cheer up Carroll, while he was at the Chatham hospital recovering.

She said the response from the community was tremendous.

Photo of Gary Carroll via Dresden Terry Fox Run.

Carroll was a lifelong member of the Dresden Rotary Club and even has a banner in his honour hanging at the Ken Houston Memorial Arena, presented by the Dresden Minor Hockey Association for being a super fan at all levels of hockey.

Brewer, who is a driving force behind the highly successful Dresden Terry Fox Run, said Carroll had also participated in that event since its inception 27 years ago.

She added that it became a tradition for him to sing the national anthem to begin the run.

“He lost both of his parents to cancer, so when we started to do the Terry Fox Run in Dresden, he was all of that,” said Brewer. “You would never see him without his pledge sheet.”

According to Brewer, Carroll was the type of person who would remember the name of every person he came in contact with.

“He was a part of the fabric of this community for sure,” said Brewer. “He was a part of the Dresden Community Church, Former Friends of the Dresden Library, and Dresden Side Streets Youth Centre.”

Meg Robinson, who is the current organizer for the Dresden Terry Fox Run, said Carroll was also honoured with a Golden Mic award at this year’s run.

“He was honoured with an award because of his dedication to singing the national anthem at every opening ceremony since I can remember,” said Robinson.

Family and friends are invited to a celebration of Gary Carroll’s life at the Badder Funeral Home and Reception Centre on Wednesday, November 30 from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. or 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. A funeral service will take place at the Dresden Community Church on Friday, December 2 at 11 a.m.

Those wishing to leave an expression of sympathy are being asked to consider the Terry Fox Foundation or a charity of their choice.