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Robert Caton (1925 - 2017) - Robert Caton in 2015, preparing to take part in London's VE day service
Last updated October 2017

Robert Caton (1925 - 2017)

Robert Caton, Chairman of ACO from 1972 until 1991, has died at the age of 92. A true gentleman, war hero and dedicated public servant, Robert was involved in a number of charities and continued his activities long into retirement.

We were sad to learn of the death in August 2017 of Robert Caton. He was pre-deceased by his wife of over 65 years and left a daughter and two grandchildren.

Robert may not be known to many younger members of ACO but will be remembered by those of a certain age. He was a truly gentleman of the "old school". A genial, strong-minded character who enjoyed a lively discussion and did not easily take "no" for an answer. He would have been challenging to those of the "yes, but" "no, but" generation and would have enjoyed engaging with them. On many occasions he had protracted correspondence with Government departments when he felt individuals had been wrongly treated.

Robert had a life-long commitment to public service. He served for 25 years in the Royal Navy where he rose to the rank of Lt. Commander. He was involved in the liberation of Jersey in WW2 and was invited to attend the 70th anniversary commemoration of VE Day at Westminster Abbey, where he was presented to Prince Charles.

Robert was a Watford Borough Councillor from 1961-1974 and served as Mayor from 1972-1973. He was a keen rugby fan and also a-life-long supporter of Watford Football Club. He regularly attended matches until ill-health prevented him.

Robert was involved in a number of charities and continued his activities long into retirement. His membership of ACO was by virtue of being Company Secretary of the RICS Benevolent Fund, a position he held for over 20 years. Robert had a strong commitment to beneficiaries whom he had helped and could recall the circumstances of each and every one, most of whom he had visited personally.

One of his favoured memories concerned a beneficiary living with her daughter in the USA. The lady received a telegram from the Queen to mark her 100th birthday. This received some local publicity in her home town, but it emerged that she was in the USA without the necessary paperwork. She was threatened with deportation and Roberts' appearance on her behalf before a high level hearing enabled her to remain in the USA.

Robert was a founding Chairman of ACO and together with Valerie Barrow, Secretary, worked tirelessly to build up the organisation. ACO has transformed greatly from the organisation that Robert Chaired but he will be remembered with our respect and appreciation.

Anyone wishing to show their personal appreciation is invited to make a donation to The Peace Hospice/.

Mike Carter
A past Chairman of ACO and former CEO, LionHeart

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