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Frederic Arsenault


Frederic Arsenault

It is with great sadness that we announce the sudden passing of Frederic J. Arsenault, 69, of Moncton, beloved husband for 45 years of Teréz Rétfalvi, on Thursday March 14, 2013 at the Dr. Georges-L.-Dumont University Hospital Centre. Born on June 10th 1943 in Mont Carmel, Prince Edward Island, he was the son of the late Georges Arsenault and Edna Richard of Mont Carmel.

For his wife Teréz, the two qualities which stood out during all of his private and professional life were his generosity and "a heart in the right place".

A graduate of Université Saint Joseph (now Université de Moncton), of Oxford University as a Rhodes scholar with a Masters (Philosophy, political science and economics) and of the École nationale d’administration of Paris, Frederic put his talents in the public service of New Brunswick and Canada and also as an independent consultant.

At the beginning of his career, he was notably the secretary of the Maritime Union Study Commission.

Loyal, discreet and self-effacing, Frederic was a good listener with an analytical mind, had a phenomenal memory, a huge network of contacts combined with a great knowledge of the political life of New Brunswick, all of which made him a wise and much appreciated advisor.

As a trusted advisor to Richard Hatfield, Frederic introduced and guided him in the realities of the Acadians and francophones of this province. In 1970, newly-elected Premier Hatfield appointed Frederic his principal secretary (executive assistant). After his return from studies in France in 1974, Frederic became a senior administrator of the Regional Economic Development Corporation and later Deputy Minister of Governmental Reform and of Supply and Services. The Premier would also entrust him with several sensitive and complicated files for their resolution. Afterwards, Frederic became a Commissioner of the CRTC (Canadian Radio and Television Commission) in Ottawa and then postings with ACOA (Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency) and Heritage Canada in Moncton.

During the last few years, Frederic was an independent consultant in the field of regional economic development and the knowledge and communications sector (Intelligent communities). He was the executive director of the New Brunswick Electoral Boundaries and Representation Commission (2005-2006); a member of the City of Moncton Bilingual Commercial Signage Committee, vice president of the Moncton West PC Association (Hon. Sue Stultz), a member of the Board of the Memramcook Institute and the Chair of the Arsenault Family Association.

Besides his mother and his wife, he is survived by two sisters: Zita (Edmond Gallant) and Bernice (Louis Arsenault) of Mont Carmel;  three sisters-in-law: Andréa Nelson (Philip) of Saint John, Maria Rétfalvi (Daniel Albert) of Cocagne, Auguszta Rétfalvi of Montréal, and two brothers-in-law: Stephen Rétfalvi (Lorraine) of Montréal and Laszlo Rétfalvi (Lisa) of Ottawa.

He will also be sadly missed by eighteen nephews and nieces, as well as nine grandnephews and grandnieces. 

The family will receive condolences at Frenette Funeral Centre, 88 Church Street, Moncton (858-1900) on Tuesday, March 26, from 2 to 4 pm and 7 to 9 pm ONLY. The funeral mass will be celebrated at Christ-Roi R.C. church, 300 Dominion Street, Moncton, on Wednesday March 27th 2013, at 10:30 am.

In loving memory of Frederic, a donation may be made to the Université de Moncton scholarship Fund, the Heart and Stroke Foundation of New Brunswick, the Acadian Scholarship Fund of Prince Edward Island or to a charity of the donor’s choice. Funeral arrangements are under the direction of Frenette Funeral Centre Moncton (858-1900).