Gestrin, Bengt Viktor

January 12, 1935 - March 15, 2023

After a long illness, Ben died peacefully in his sleep on March 15, 2023 in Thornbury.

He was born in Helsinki, Finland on January 12, 1935 and moved to Toronto with his young bride, Carita in 1957.

Ben was the son of the late Emil and Naimi (nee Osterberg) Gestrin. He is survived by his wife Carita (nee Erlin) Gestrin, son Philip (Juliette) Gestrin and by seven grandchildren, three in Paris and four in England. Preceded in death by his eldest son Michael (Carly) Gestrin in 2019.

Ben obtained his MA at the University of Toronto, followed by his PhD (Economics) in 1966.  During the next six years the family followed Ben to Switzerland (BIS), Paris (OECD), Ottawa (Privy Council Office), Paris again, and finally a return to Toronto as Economic Advisor at CIBC.  Ben also served as Finland’s Honorary Consul General in Toronto (1979-1989). He retired in 1993 and spent the last 31 years in Thornbury, Ontario.

As your expression of sympathy, donations to the charity of your choice would be appreciated and may be made through the Ferguson Funeral Home, 48 Boucher St. E., Meaford, ON   N4L 1B9 to whom arrangements have been entrusted.



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Memories & Messages of condolence

  1. Maryann Dinsmore
    Thursday, March 16, 2023

    I’m so sorry, Carita. My deepest sympathies are extended to you and your family. I will be in touch with you a bit later. Take care. Maryann

  2. Eileen Gamble
    Friday, March 17, 2023

    So sorry to read about the passing of your dear husband Carita
    Cherish the memories and hold them all close to your heart.

  3. Gary & Sharon Long
    Friday, March 17, 2023

    Condolences to the Gestrin family on the passing of Ben. Enjoyed many chats with him the past few years.

  4. Christine Sivell
    Saturday, March 18, 2023

    We are sorry to hear of Ben’s passing. Our sympathy to you and your family in the loss of a fine husband father and grandfather. We will see you soon.
    Christine (Teen) Sivell and Joe Ferri

  5. Don Stevenson
    Saturday, March 18, 2023

    Dear Carita,

    When I look at your Riopelle in our dining room, I think of you and Ben. When I think of minority rights in Canada, I think of Swedish Finns like you . When I remember growing up on the shores of Georgian Bay in Grey County, I think of you and Ben. He was a wonderful man.

  6. Brenda Sawatzky-Girling
    Friday, March 24, 2023

    Sincere condolences to Carita, Philip and the Gestrin Family on Ben’s passing. I’m grateful to have a lifetime of memories of Ben – tall, wise, graceful, thoughtful. As I stared into the dark sky the night I learned of his passing, I reflected on Ben’s long life and the many good times our families shared. I had a sense that Michael is no longer alone. Wishing you peace.
    Ben will be sadly missed.
    With love,
    Brenda, on behalf of the Sawatzky Family

  7. Georgie Donais
    Monday, April 17, 2023

    My heartfelt condolences to Carita and the Gestrin family.


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