Call Now – Available 24/7
Call Now – Available 24/7 519-363-2525

David Middleton

Rhody Family Funeral Home

David John Middleton was born in Chesley on Thursday, November 24, 1955, to proud parents Douglas John and Edith Gladys (Ruthven) Middleton. The family lived in town for three months before relocating to Toronto. Doug worked for CN Railways as a station agent, which meant the family moved around a lot. The Middleton family moved 21 times during Dave’s childhood, four different times within Ripley alone! In 1958, while living in Listowel, the family welcomed Dave’s younger sister, Joan. In 1965, Doug worked in Hanover and the family lived in Durham. Later that same year, they relocated to “the nicest town around”, Chesley. During Dave’s high school years, the Middleton family purchased Elmer Ward’s farm, located south of the Morrow car dealership, and began raising sheep. In Dave’s words, he attended “all grades but not all days.” Dave excelled in sports from a young age, particularly baseball and hockey. He played on a variety of local teams and was eventually scouted for a number of Junior “A” and “B” teams.

Dave was accepted to Seneca College, where he double majored in hockey and soccer and minored in Chemical Technology. Following college, Dave accepted a job in the sporting goods department at Zellers. While assembling a bicycle, he was approached by a ScotiaBank Manager, and soon joined the bank. He split his time between the Guelph and Kitchener branches. In 1979, an opportunity presented itself for Dave to return home and work at Douglas Point with his friend and birthday twin, Don Bowers. In 1980, Dave started his insurance career, selling for Wawanesa Life and later joined his dad at Middleton Insurance.

In 1978, following high school, Dave and Heather started dating. By 1979, they were engaged, and on Saturday, May 3, 1980, at Holy Trinity Anglican Church in Chesley, they were married. Together they called Chesley home, where they welcomed their four children: Rebekah (1982), Dan (1983), Courtney (1987), and Kellin (1989). With the birth of Dan, the family tradition of using the first initial “D” and middle name “John” continued. The family called 5th Street S.E. home until the birth of Courtney, when they moved to a larger home on the west side of town; 4th Avenue S.W. Somehow the Middletons always ended up living across the road from the McLeod family. It was this home where Dave and Heather raised their family.

Dave and Heather spent many hours taking their kids to sporting events throughout Ontario. To support the kids’ love of ice sports, Dave built an outdoor rink: 4th Ave Gardens, home of the “Crush Cup”. Dave took great pride in his ice rink. Together with his friends, he built a Zamboni, with space for advertising. Rumour has it that the Chesley arena’s Zamboni even made a visit late one winter evening. The neighbours looked forward to the rink every winter.

Dave continued to play hockey in adult life, which is when he earned the nickname “Ducky.” He was the only man that could play three periods of hockey and take off his helmet to find not a single hair out of place (“like water off a duck’s back”)! Dave’s friends loved to tease him about his hair – much to his chagrin, his kids carried on the tradition, developing their own repertoire of hair jokes. Some said it looked like rusty steel wool; others referred to it as his CSA-approved helmet.

Dave also coached hockey and baseball. When he wasn’t playing sports, he was watching them. He was a die-hard Maple Leaf fan – his icon was #27 Darryl Sittler. Many in the Middleton family have worn and continue to wear #27. After many years of hauling Dan and Kellin around Ontario rinks, in recent years, Dave and Heather enjoyed attending their grandchildren’s sporting events.

Dave absolutely loved road trips and shared many with Heather and the kids throughout the years. The family took several trips to the East Coast and regularly travelled the back roads of Ontario. Many March breaks began with the promise that the family would hit the road at 12 noon sharp on Friday. Dave was a man of his word and always picked the kids up on time – only to leave them waiting in the Safari van for a few hours while he finished all his tasks in the office. Dave was also known for his Sunday drives. Distance was never a concern – but the scenery was. The family would load up in the van to travel to Tobermory for ice cream or to Niagara Falls for lunch. Dave loved printed maps and didn’t trust GPS. He was renowned for his scenic “long-cuts”, often referred to by the Middletons as the “Dave Route”. He preferred a back road over a highway. The less traveled the road the better!

Dave’s Saturday morning routine was well known. The day would start at the coffee shop in Chesley, followed by the convenience store for a newspaper and lottery ticket. He would then head to the Bentinck dump, before stopping at Bentinck Packers for cold meat, pepperettes, hamburgers or smoked pork chops. His last stop would take him to Schultz’s, where he’d pick up donuts for the grandkids. If around, the sons-in-law would be required company on these trips.

Dave was a proud and dedicated businessman. After joining his dad at Middleton’s Insurance in Chesley, together they opened an office in Wiarton in 1982. Three years later, in 1985, Dave bought the business from his father and operated it until its sale in 1999. He then joined the Investor’s Group, before becoming a member of BMO Financial in 2002, working out of Owen Sound. In this role, he travelled around Grey Bruce assisting clients. In 2015, Dave joined Nesbitt Burns, remaining there until his retirement in 2022. Dave earned the respect of his clients and colleagues alike. He was known to keep team meetings interesting, as he was never afraid to speak up and say things others were thinking. He was deliberate, always knowing what he wanted and how he was going to get there. His dry jokes and little chuckle were always appreciated. He was often looked to as a leader on the team.

Dave took pride in his community, and always looked to give back where he could. He was a member of the Chesley Kinsmen Club, serving as president for a term and helping the club earn the Hal Roger’s Fellowship Award. Dave also spent time on town council, serving as Deputy Reeve. Additionally, he served as President of Grey Bruce Insurance Brokers Association.

In 2002, Dave and Heather moved to the 14th of Bentinck on their two acres of paradise. There he built “The Cabin”, with nothing more than a vision, a chainsaw, and a healthy dose of sweat equity from his sons and sons-in-law. He enjoyed spending time in the bush building trails; unfortunately, he was often the only one who could find and navigate them… The grandkids would often hike to The Cabin with Grandpa Dave, enjoying the wild life in the summer (such as the pileated wood pecker or, more frequently, the mosquitos) and an ice rink in the winter. Hot chocolate made on the wood stove was always a special treat.

Dave enjoyed tinkering and collecting antiques. He spent many hours tinkering with his model train set and delighted in showing his grandkids the latest improvements. He also enjoyed a good project, as exemplified by his garden pond, Agrifair displays (which often included baby farm animals), landscaping and lawn maintenance, and of course, his pride and joy, The Cabin. He loved fishing, and enjoyed many adventures to Lady Evelyn, Georgian Bay, Camp Brewster, Port Loring and the streams and rivers of Bruce County. These fishing expeditions always began with the purchase of a promising new lure or piece of fishing gear, the success of which was debatable; however, there was never any doubt about the adventures to be had, including a trip down a waterfall… backwards! When not fishing, Dave enjoyed hitting the links and playing golf with his friends.

In recent years, Dave faced health challenges. His positive outlook on life and determination was ever apparent. He settled into a quieter lifestyle, while still valuing his time with family and friends. When relaxing at home, the television was often tuned into sports, where he would be caught up in the action, cheering and yelling at the broadcast. He also enjoyed action movies – Red October was a favourite. And who could forget the hours of BNN Bloomberg – riveting TV (only for a financial advisor). Like most Bruce County boys, Dave loved his steak, and his pie… just ask his nieces about their pie plates! He enjoyed sipping on an aged Rum. If Dave spoke, you listened, and his presence was always felt. He was a proud family man and enjoyed watching his family grow and excel in recent years. He always looked forward to visits with his children and grandchildren, spending quality time with each of them. Although his time with us was cut short, Dave’s life and legacy will carry on in the memories and stories of him that we share. He will be missed!

Dave passed away peacefully, surrounded by his loving family, on Monday, April 15, 2024, in his 69th year.

Beloved husband of Heather (Loucks). Loving father of Rebekah (Steve) Coleman of Holland Landing, Dan (Sheena) of Chesley, Courtney (Bill) Cook of Wellesley, and Kellin (Larissa) of San Francisco. Cherished grandpa of Isley, Walker, Bowie, Harper, Darby, William, Dorothy, and Johnny. Dave will be dearly missed by his sister Joan and her husband Peter McCannel of Burgoyne and his stepmother Audrey Middleton of Hanover. He was predeceased by his parents, Douglas and Edith (Ruthven) Middleton.

Visitation will be held at Rhody Family Funeral Home, Chesley on Friday, April 26th from 4 – 7 p.m., where a memorial service honouring David’s life will be held on Saturday, April 27, 2024, at 11 a.m. Private family inurnment in Chesley Cemetery.

In lieu of flowers, memorial donations to the Chesley Hospital Foundation or Canadian Tire Jumpstart, to support youth in sports, would be appreciated as expressions of sympathy.

Submit A Condolence

Fill in the form below to send a public condolence.
To send a private condolence to the family click below.

If you are having difficulty posting a condolence, please email it directly to [email protected] and we will post it for you! Sorry for any inconvenience.

129 Condolences
Inline Feedbacks
View all Condolences

Our Testimonials

Our Facilities

Our Price List

Private Condolence

Contact Us