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Obituary - Gunnar Strömbert

Gunnar Strömbert (Warmaster Bull Terriers) died in Mjölby, Sweden on the 19th June. His last judging appointment was in England at the Northern Basenji Club Open show 40th Jubilee on 1st April this year. The committee and myself send their condolences to his widow Helena Strömbert (Faraoland Basenjis) at this very sad time. His funeral is to take place on July12th in Mjölby.
Gunnar was born in 1948. In 1968 when he was in the Army, he was the group leader of the Mine Squad and had a dog called Arméns Pry. He trained him to a high degree to locate all types of land mines. Gunnar was a dog man through and through, had dogs all his life and in 1972 he got his kennel prefix, ‘Warmaster’ and four years later he started the Bull Terrier Club together with Mr. Lundqvist and Mrs Hägglund.

He started the first local kennel club to serve directly under the SKK (Swedish Kennel Club) in 1974/1975 and he was the chairman of that club for five years. He was the first man to be in charge when the SKK decided to have their first show directed by the local/county kennel club. That was in Mantorp in 1977. He was the first to put the "ringbands" on the ground and mount it with nails instead of having fences made of pole and rope. The "ringbands" are still used at every show in Sweden - mounted the same way! Gunnar was an active judge (not in FCI) for 30 years. He judged "drive in" shows (similar to UK Open shows) and other all breed shows – in all almost 110 shows. He also judged some specialty shows for the breeds: Yorkshire Terrier, Bullmastiff, Samoyed, Rhodesian Ridgeback, German Spitz Klein/mittel, Cocker Spaniel etc.

He was very popular abroad also. Judging Bull terriers with CCs in Austria, Latvia and Russia. He judged Bull terriers in England four times (without CCs) and twice each in Finland and in Denmark. I understand that he was the only Swedish breeder put on the A-list in England He also judged large groups with Samoyeds, Siberian Husky, Beagle and Dobermans in Scotland.

Two years ago Gunnar was voted Chairman of the Bullmastiff Club. He had a lot of assignments in other clubs and many clubs often turned to him for help when problems occurred. This spring he was also voted for chairman in SSUK (Spitz and primitive types).

During my last visit in May after he had been diagnosed with cancer, he never once complained but wanted to carry on as normal for a long as possible. I feel very privileged to have known this fine man and together with the many people both here and in Sweden he has helped over the years, will miss him very much. He leaves elderly parents and a son, Anders, who also has a keen interest in dogs.

Irene Horner