Robert “Bob” Accinelli ’61 was born and raised in San Francisco and educated in parochial schools. He obtained a B.A. in history from SCU, where he graduated summa cum laude and was class valedictorian. He then went on to complete his master’s and Ph.D. in history from UC Berkeley, were he met his wife, Nancy, and made lifelong friends. In 1965 he joined the history department at the University of Toronto; he loved teaching there until his retirement. He was a respected scholar, an accomplished teacher, and for a time president of the Canadian Association of American Studies. Near his retirement Bob became a dedicated student of Italian at the Istuto Italiano di Cultura. Bob was an active contributor at the Academy for Lifelong Learning at Knox College, U of T, and more recently he joined Democrats & Donuts. With each activity, Bob would become part of a new community that was richer for his presence. He was an avid walker, cyclist, and hiker. He traveled extensively, including Iqaluit, Nunavut, as well as various destinations in Asia andEast Europe; his last two big trips were Turkey and Ireland. And at the yearly Accinelli tree-trimming event with family and friends he became infamous at charades. On July 3, 2019, Bob died of metastatic bladder cancer. He left this world on his own terms, citing “I’m ready: curtain down” just as he lived life with love, humor, and wisdom.  Many will remember his insights in U.S. politics, which were much needed of late, including gerrymandering. He was always up for a friendly political debate. He loved live music and theatre and was generous of time and spirit, believing strongly in the importance of philanthropy, particularly of the arts (Vanier College Productions) and PBS, which he watched faithfully. Bob was preceded by his wife, Nancy, and leaves behind his two children, daughter Francesca (Michel) and son Adrian (Andrea). Bob was a proud grandfather of Elodie, James, Bixente, and Juliet and a much loved brother to Lena Garbarino (Fiore) and the late Edward Chiappari (Lori), and uncle to Ron, Julie, and Joe (deceased). Bob was also very fond of his sister-in-law Trish (Dian) who was truly a kindred spirit for him.

27 Aug 2019