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Ed Roberts NL Obituary, Death – Preceded By

Ed Roberts NL Obituary, Death – Preceded By

Ed Roberts NL Obituary – Well-known Newfoundland and Labrador politician, lawyer, author and historian Edward Roberts died early Friday morning, Jan. 14, at his home in St. John’s. He was 81. Roberts also served as Newfoundland and Labrador’s lieutenant governor between 2002 and 2008, and was the honorary chief of the Royal Newfoundland Constabulary and honorary colonel of the Royal Newfoundland Regiment.

Roberts was born in St. John’s on Sept. 1, 1940. He attended Holloway School and Prince of Wales College in St. John’s and went on to complete high school at St. Andrews College in Aurora, Ont. He would later attend the University of Toronto where he graduated in 1960 with a Bachelor of Arts and in 1964 with a Bachelor of Laws. While at the university he was also the editor of The Varsity newspaper.

Roberts was called to the Bar of Newfoundland in 1965, became Queen’s Counsel in 1979 and a Master of the Supreme Court in 1989. At age 26 he was elected to the provincial legislative assembly as a Liberal, representing the Northern Peninsula under then-premier Joey Smallwood. Roberts was re-elected in the next five general elections.

Roberts held a number of high-profile cabinet positions during his political career. During the Smallwood years, he served as minister of public welfare and minister of health. Roberts left politics in 1985 but offered himself up again in 1992 and was elected in Labrador’s Naskaupi district. He held the positions of Attorney General and Minister of Justice under Premier Clyde Wells before retiring from politics permanently in 1996.  Roberts was also appointed chairman of the Board of Regents of Memorial University of Newfoundland from 1997 to 2002, and received an honorary Doctor of Laws degree from the university in 2003.

In 2002, Roberts was appointed Lieutenant Governor of Newfoundland and Labrador and is credited with making Government House and its grounds more accessible to the public. He also oversaw the creation of the Order of Newfoundland and Labrador.

In 2006, while serving as lieutenant governor, Edward completed a Master of Arts degree in history at Memorial University. In recent years, he edited and authored several books on Newfoundland and Labrador history.

Roberts was predeceased by his parents, Dr. Harry and Katharine Roberts, and his brothers Peter and Douglas. He is survived by his wife Eve, sister-in-law Betty, daughters Catherine, Caroline, Jessica, and Alison, sons-in-law Ben and Derek, and grandchildren Madeleine, Graeme, Lauren, Claire, Noah, Chloe, Jeremy, and Henry.

At his request, there will be no visitation. A private family funeral will take place at Gower Street United Church. In lieu of flowers, the family would appreciate donations in Edward’s memory to the SPCA St. John’s or the charity of one’s choice.


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