Bob Cantrick, over five decades building communist movement

By Steve Penner
December 7, 2020

MONTREAL — Bob Cantrick, a member and supporter of the communist movement for over five decades, died Nov. 4 in Toronto at the age of 76. He had been hospitalized for a serious respiratory condition after undergoing radiation therapy for throat cancer.

Cantrick joined the Young Socialist Alliance in Bloomington, Indiana, in 1967 and the Socialist Workers Party in Chicago in 1970.

In 1972 he volunteered in the party’s print shop in New York, producing the Militant and books by party leaders and other revolutionaries. Cantrick later did German translation for the Pathfinder series, The Communist International in Lenin’s Time, and more recently for The Jewish Question, A Marxist Interpretation, by Abram Leon.

He was a member of several branches of the SWP, building the party’s trade union fractions in auto, garment, machining and steel.

In 1995 Cantrick moved to Canada with his companion, Joanne Pritchard, and was a member of the Communist League in Toronto and Montreal. He had been an organized supporter of the communist movement since the early 2000s.

A meeting to celebrate his political life is being organized Dec. 5 in Montreal. Messages to the meeting can be sent to the Communist League at Any photos of Cantrick and his involvement in labor and political activities would be welcomed in helping to prepare displays on his life.