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Ross Tuzo: a man of many talents

Master craftsman: Ross Tuzo

We paid tribute in our column last week to Gloria Elizabeth Tuzo, I shall now focus on the man who played a pivotal role in her life.

Of course, I speak of none other than Ross Tuzo, her loving and adoring husband and father of their two children, Livingston and Deborah.

Gloria and Ross complemented each other in many significant ways.

According to Deborah, her mother adored her father and her father reciprocated love and affection in equal measure. Perhaps their relationship can best be described as a match that was made in heaven, as their love was steadfast and immovable.

Gloria and Ross met as preteens when they entered the Berkeley Institute to commence their high-school education. After graduation came a few years’ courtship and a proposal; they got married in a grand ceremony attended by family and friends at St Mary’s Church in Warwick in 1949.

The young couple walked shoulder to shoulder down the corridor of life, encompassing all of its twists and turns, triumphs and tribulations. It was an epic journey which they endured together for 67 years.

Ross was indeed a man of many talents. He was politely described by close friends as an introspective person who exhibited strong convictions.

He was also known, in our local community, as a prolific writer who penned a large volume of letters to The Royal Gazette, articulating his political and social views over a period of two decades — from 1978 to 1998.

Ross is a longstanding and active member of the Masonic lodges in Bermuda where he excelled to become a senior grand lodge officer. He accompanied his late wife on trips to England and Ireland representing various lodges here.

He was known as a master craftsman, a builder and entrepreneur who was a longstanding member of the Bermuda Industrial Union.

He began his career as a carpenter at the tender age of 17 under the late Stuart Tott and master builder Dilton Cann, whose business was located on Front Street, Hamilton where Rosa’s Cantina currently resides. Under the tutelage of these two gentlemen, Ross mastered the art of constructing traditional box-frame windows, some of which were made in traditional Bermuda cedar. The demise of this industry occurred upon the introduction of aluminium windows.

Ross opened his own carpentry business in 1962, operating for a period of 42 years. He also built his own home, and has lived there with his family for more than 65 years.

In his formative years, Ross was an accomplished saxophonist. During the heyday of tourism in Bermuda, in the 1950s, he was somewhat of a jazz enthusiast playing with the Sydney Utlley Band, the Gilbert Rolin Band, the Maude Fox Band and others.

Now in his sunset years, Ross is enjoying retirement. Prior to his wife’s death, they travelled extensively around the world visiting the United States, Canada, Africa, Europe and Australia.