If it had a motor, he wanted to see how fast he could drive it. If there was a chance to have fun, he was there. And if he could share these experiences with friends, there was no stopping him.
The very definition of “High on Life,” Brad had a special charisma and enthusiasm that made every moment brighter. His playful nature and love of a good time were accompanied by a competitive streak; whether in games, trivia knowledge, or lived experiences, he loved to WIN. He liked to win so much that he turned a 6-month cancer prognosis into 6 eventful years of bucket-listing. He was driven and stubborn; he decided early on exactly what his final days would look like, and he won that too. Brad passed suddenly on a sunny and warm Friday, on May 1, 2020 on St. Joseph Island. He died doing exactly what he loved best: visiting friends and adventuring in his RV (or “bus” as he preferred to call it). Brad would likely count it as another win that he got to miss the flying scourge that is mosquito season.
Brad will be remembered by Lise Guindon, his love and partner in adventure, as well as their trusty sidekick, Willow. He will live on in the memories created with his children, Lee Rendell (Jacob), and Michael Skinner (Allison). He will be missed by Lise’s children, Roger Valliere, Sylvie Valliere Barner (Fred), and Julie Valliere, as well as many grandchildren and great-grandchildren. A devoted “Oompapa” (as he insisted on being called) to his granddaughter Dax, Brad loved babies and kids and he shared their curiosity and enthusiasm for fun.
Brad leaves behind his sister, Cory Skinner (Serge) and nephews Chris Sicurella (Meagan) and Matt Sicurella (Caitlyn). Born on August 14, 1962, Brad loved and was loved dearly by his Dad and Mom, the late Newman Skinner and Francis Skinner (nee Bigelow).
He leaves behind a very long list of friends that he made over the years, all across Canada and the US. Brad will be dearly missed by Karen and Rick Mascardelli, who were always his closest friends, his “bosom buddies”. If he were here to edit these words himself, he would have inserted a boob joke, because, well, “bosom”.
Brad made a full and comfortable life for himself across Canada. He worked many jobs, including industrial sales across Northern Ontario, opening up “Skinner’s Bruhaus” in Sault Ste. Marie, and mining in Kapuskasing, but his most recent and favourite was “driving giant Tonka trucks” out in BC. Brad loved life and he carved out time to enjoy many things, piloting planes, operating giant graders, travelling, boating, snowmobiling, hunting, fishing, golfing, quading up mountains, motorcycling across provinces, and exploring canyons in convertibles. But the biggest thrills he got were always in sharing those experiences with the people he loved. He loved listening to stories, laughing at great jokes, and getting a good “deal”. He could be found most evenings playing cards, sharing his love of music, reading, or barbequing. Brad loved BBQ. Also anything deep-fried. Or doused in sauce. Or sweet. Or salty. Also cheese. He was a devout believer in “butter makes it better”.
He will be remembered as he lived: fast, fun, and a friend to many.
As per his request, there will be no service. Those wishing to make a donation in his honour are asked to donate to ARCH Hospice.
Special thanks to Dr. Nikki Apostle, his home-care nurse Amy, the teams at Home & Community Care and ARCH Hospice, the many first responders that helped on Friday and for the support and help from friends.
Arrangements entrusted to Northwood Funeral Home Cremation and Reception Centre (942 Great Northern Rd, 705-945-7758). www.northwoodfuneral.com
“There’ll be time enough for countin’, when the dealin’s done”