Helmuth Fischer

Helmuth Alexander Fischer

1941 - 2020

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Obituary of Helmuth Alexander Fischer


November 30, 1941

September 21, 2020


Helmuth was a gentle and humble man, with a youthful outlook, who faced the challenges of life with resilience, vibrancy and an incurable hope. Intellectually curious and attentive to others, he was fascinated by foreign languages and people from different horizons. A voracious reader, creative gardener, and a lover of classical music, this intelligent and distinguished man was a humanist with strong social justice values and environmental consciousness. Having been an anti-war activist and organizer at the University of Waterloo campus in the 1960s and 70s, Helmuth never lost his interest in world events and contemporary political issues.


Helmuth was born in Graz, Austria in 1941 to Margarete and Werner Fischer (deceased) and was displaced to the Harz, Germany, in the aftermath of World War II. At the age of 12, he emigrated to Northern Ontario with his family on board the DEV Beaverbrae, which brought displaced persons and immigrants from Bremen to Québec. Helmuth spent his teen years in the mining town of Renabie, where he first worked as a gold miner. He left the bush to attend high school in Chapleau, Ontario, before graduating from Waterloo Lutheran University in Philosophy, working as a reporter and photographer at the Elmira Signet and obtaining an M.A. in German Literature at the University of Waterloo.


Helmuth started his career as a professional German-English translator and founded AMS Translation Services in 1977 with his life partner Anne-Marie Souan. He was an extremely versatile and passionate translator, well-appreciated by his clients. In parallel, he taught German for twenty-five years across the universities of Wilfrid Laurier, Waterloo, and Guelph and was very dedicated to his students.


Helmuth was a beautiful companion for forty-four years to Anne-Marie and a loving father to Malcolm and Hugo Fischer and Maricia Fischer-Souan. He was grandfather to Leroy, Theo, Ruby and Simon, brother to Ursula Wyman, brother-in-law to Paul Wyman and uncle to Peter and Karl Wyman. His friendship with Martha Wright brought mutual joy and courage in spite of illness. Helmuth was a pillar of support for his daughter Maricia throughout her academic studies and was extremely proud to be able to attend her doctoral defence recently via Zoom during the pandemic.


His family is grateful for the excellent care he received at the Grand River Cancer Centre and Hospital and wishes to thank in particular his principal oncologist, Dr. Bonnie McCarron, Nurse Jeanette, all the nurses in the Chemo Suite and the 6th floor oncology nurses, especially Nurses Jess and Alex, for their dedication and kindness, as well as his physician, Dr. Hasan Habib. We express our gratitude to our neighbours and friends, especially Joshua Scott, for their support.


Cremation has taken place and no ceremony will be held. Those who so desire may share their sympathies through the Erb and Good Funeral Home, 171 King St. S., Waterloo and make a donation in memory of Helmuth to the Aplastic Anemia and Myelodysplasia Association of Canada at 519-745-8445 or www.erbgood.com.