Stanley Theodore Chant
- Born: 15 Oct 1919, Webbwood, Ontario
- Died: 4 Feb 1979, London, England at age 59
- Buried: May 1979, Webbwood, Ontario
Stanley was a lieutenant in the RCNVR"
Following is the text of an item in the church bulletin written by John Baker, Vicar, All Saints Battersea Park, London England.
Dear People of All Saints,
"We brought nothing into this world, and it is certain we can carry nothing out". Those words from the funeral service were particularly poignant when read at the cremation of Stan Chant because, as many local people will remember, he seemed always to be carrying his heavy cases.
Those who stopped to speak to him - and Stan had a wide circle in Battersea who did - will remember him as a courteous, intelligent, observant, but above all, cheerful man. Something in his past had obviously unsettled him so that routine, domestic life was, for him, unacceptable. But he always faced the rigours of his unattached life-style with an optimistic and Christian fortitude.
He arrived in this country from Canada in 1959 at the age of 40, and after a brief spell in hostels settled first at All Saints and later, by generous and wise permission of Paul Draper, and later Tony Powell, at the Shaftesbury Welcome Mission. The Mission and its members lived up to their name and gave Stan the base he needed - supportive, but not intrusive. From the Mission Stan took and held a regular cleaning job at Harrods - previously he had been able to keep only occasional work. There were signs that he was becoming of a more settled way of life. But the deprivations of his earlier solitariness overtook him and he died of chronic bronchitis on Feb. 4. There were many floral tributes at his funeral which took place first at the Mission, followed by the Anglican service at Lambeth Crematorium.
I have been since been privileged to see some of the contents of those heavy cases of Stan's. What precisely it was that unsettled him must remain a mystery, but we know he was divorced in 1949 having had two sons, Andrew and Peter. There are some small hospital bills and evidence of unsuccessful job applications in the years immediately prior to his move to England.
Earlier still we know Stan served in the Royal Canadian Navy as a lieutenant with war service in the north Atlantic on an escort vessel. So next time you or I are asked for a crumb by a dishevelled man I hope we will reflect that he may have helped, at some finer moment in his career, to keep our food and shipping lines open. Maybe we will be more sensitive in our response to the proposals about the Battersea General Hospital site. That would be a good remembrance of Stan. You might also like to join in making a donation to the diocesan work for the single homeless.
His family tried to get through to him. There is a most moving letter, which Stan kept, from his father who visited England in 1969 in a vain search for his son. To him and Stan's other relatives, we offer our sympathy. May Stan, at his journey's end, find the rest he deserves.
Obituary published in The Toronto Star:
CHANT, Stanley Theodore
World War II, Irish Regiment & R.C.N.V.R. - Died London, England, February 4, 1979, following brief illness. Son of Douglas B. Chant, Toronto. Brother of John Douglas, Rosemere Que. Sarah Jane & Gail (Mrs. W.D. Collett) Toronto. Father of Andrew, Toronto & Peter, Montreal. Funeral service held in London, followed by cremation. Burial later in Canada.
Stanley married Phyllis Craigmile, daughter of Andrew Craigmile and Unknown.