A giant of the community and icon of the oil sands, Leo Robert, has died from cancer.
Robert moved to Fort McMurray in 1975. Soon after arriving, he started his own company, L. Robert Enterprises with a single welding truck.
Over his 30 years in the community, he grew L. Robert Enterprises to become an oil sands mainstay employing over 450 people.
In 2006, Robert sold the company to CEDA and retired to Kelowna with his wife, Debbie Robert.
“Leo’s tour of duty on the cancer battlefield is done. He fought a good fight and is now in the arms awaiting him at heaven’s door,” said his wife, Debbie Robert in a Facebook post.
“The loss of this wonderful man is heartbreaking.”
Robert was active in the community throughout his career. He served as Co-Chair of the Alberta Seniors games in 2003. He also sat on the apprenticeship board for the Alberta Government and was heavily involved in Keyano College’s apprenticeship programs.
A caring and continual philanthropist in the region, Robert supported many causes including the Northern Lights Hospital Foundation, The Fellowship Baptist Soup Kitchen, and the Rotary house. Beyond charity, Robert sponsored many sports in our community, including the AA PeeWee Oil Barons which NHLer Scottie Upshall once played for.
“He personified everything good about our town. He started his business with one welding truck,” said Upshall.
“He was always the first to reach into his pockets for the kids in the town.”
Several years ago, the RMWB christened a new industrial development the “Leo Robert Industrial Park” to honour Robert’s many contributions to Fort McMurray and Wood Buffalo.
In lieu of flowers, his wife Debbie Robert is suggesting people donate to one of the organizations that helped Leo Robert through his final journey: