By Bruce Mackenzie
The NPH has lost a long-time friend, board member and supporter. At the age of 61, Bruce Harschnitz was struck by a passing vehicle along a roadway in rural Brantford in the early morning of November 8, 2023. His life was celebrated in Brantford, on November 16. Over 200 relatives, friends and co-workers came to show their respects to Bruce.
Bruce was married to Marian for 31 glorious years, and is survived by his brothers, Peter and Brian. Bruce grew up on Hamilton Mountain. He graduated from Sir Sanford Fleming College and then later graduated from Trent University in Environmental Science.
He started his career with the Hamilton Conservation Authority, HCA, as a summer student. After and then on to Confederation Beach Park. He spent the last six years of his life as Manager of Conservation Services for the Authority. Bruce was well known and respected throughout the HCA. His passion for nature was a perfect match for his career.
Marian shared Bruce with a number of organizations. He volunteered for 28 years as an Auxiliary Officer for the Ontario Provincial Police in Brant County and as the Auxiliary Unit Commander for 25 years. He also found time to volunteer as a Board member for the NPH. He was editor of the Newsletter from 1997 to 1999. From 2000 to 2002, he acted as the Statistics Manager. He was also a counter at Beamer during those years. Bruce and his family were long-time members of the Hamilton Naturalists’ Club.
Marian and Bruce travelled throughout Canada, Europe, and the United States whenever they could. Bruce was always accompanied by his camera. He thoroughly enjoyed looking at nature through a lens. Bruce and Marian were great supporters of the Hawkwatch banquets. They likely didn’t miss one and always kept the bucket draw buckets full of his tickets and Bruce was well known to win his share of prizes. They were also very generous with their donations to the raffles.