Aubrey Jameson Bart



BAR HARBOR — Aubrey Jameson Bart, age 67, died on Sunday, April 16, 2017, in Bar Harbor.

Born in Baltimore, Md., on June 9, 1949, to Olive Mildred Rowe and Charles Edward Smith, his given name was William “Bill” Charles Smith. In 1981, he changed his name to Aubrey (King of the Elves) Jameson Bart. After a childhood of much mischief, including summer visits with cousins in the country and hopping freights, he went on to graduate from Randolph Macon College in 1971, with a BA in History, which he claimed was “useless in the marketplace.”

When asked to describe his career, Aubrey admitted to “working odd jobs to support a writing habit.” Right through to the end he kept up a daily routine of writing, yoga and meditation. Naturally a quiet man, who loved animals and nature, Aubrey was considered a good listener by many people. His open-mindedness and poetic sensibilities made him appreciate the rich variety of characters and stories he witnessed. One of the places closest to his heart was New Orleans. His work in the French Quarter as a taxi driver, street sweep, and bartender at the Napoleon House, gave him an insider’s view from which to write his extraordinary novel, “The Bluesiana Snake Festival” (2010, Counterpoint Press).

The other place he loved most was Mount Desert Island, where he moved in 1984. Although as a child Aubrey had preferred a long walk to school to avoid the bus, he became many people’s favorite bus driver. He drove for schools on Mount Desert Island, the YMCA, and for the Island Explorer. However, Aubrey’s biggest fan base was from the Appalachian Mountain Club’s camp at Echo Lake. All summer, for nearly three decades, Aubrey drove hundreds of AMC campers to their hike leaders’ choice of a trail in Acadia National Park, often hiked with them, and then drove them back to camp. He also loved to hike with his daughter Gaia and his son John.

Aubrey is survived by his daughter Gaia Diedricksen of Bernard, his son John Bart of Bar Harbor, his brother Mike Smith of Hanover, Pa., and his nieces Rachel Rang and Sarah Getchell.

In his last four months of valiant struggle with cancer Aubrey enjoyed the loving care and help from so many people it would fill the page, but in particular the family is grateful for the kindness, patience, and skill of the nurses from Sonogee, Hospice and MDI Hospital. Aubrey was given generous financial support by the Common Good Soup Kitchen, where he volunteered for years, and by hundreds of friends and neighbors through a GoFundMe fundraiser, for which he was most grateful. “I love everybody,” he often said.

Donations in Aubrey’s memory may be paid to the Common Good Soup Kitchen, P.O. Box 265, Southwest Harbor, ME, 04679, or the Beth C. Wright Cancer Resource Center, P.O. Box 322, 23 Commerce Park, Ellsworth, ME 04605, or the “Gaia and John Fund,” Bar Harbor Banking & Trust, P.O. Box 400, Bar Harbor, ME 04606.

 

Know when to pay your respects.