Friday, September 07, 2007

Sad News

This is the article where it is revealed the Lynn and Rod Johnston have been separated since April.

The news that Rod Johnston had met someone else was a devastating shock to Lynn, whose millions of fans thought her long marriage -- like the long marriage of Elly and John -- was "storybook" in nature. "It shows our family was as vulnerable as anyone," she said during a phone interview with E&P.

Count me among those millions of fans. I always liked the idea that John and Elly mimicked Rod and Lynn, and how they represented a solid marriage. I was surprised at how this news affected me. I liked the idea that there was good, old, goofy Rod; who was willing to take on Lynn and everything that went with her.

Having learned this news, there were a number of things which suddenly made sense.

(The cartoonist said she initially had a lot of trouble drawing John after Rod left her real-life marriage, but finally the "spell was broken" and she was able to do it.)

I. The 2 month departure of John Patterson in the strip now makes sense.

II. May 15, 2007 – I was announced that Kate Johnston was now on Lynn Johnston’s staff. While most folks were speculating nepotism, it now appears that Kate moved back in to support her mom in her separation. Good for her.

III. I wrote up a Blog entry devoted to what happened to Nancy Vincent, whose place on the staff Kate Johnston had taken.

I made the following observations then, which I find very interesting now.

1. Nancy Vincent, who used to be in charge of both the For Better or For Worse office and its promotion side business Entercom Canada, Inc is gone.
2. In Nancy’s place over at Entercom Canada, Inc, is Robert Kuenzlen, C.I.M.
3. Nancy’s position is gone completely on the For Better or For Worse side, but Kate Johnston has been added.
4. I notice that Entercom Canada, Inc., which used to say it was a business which could promote other business than For Better or For Worse, is now strictly a business promoting For Better or For Worse. I don’t see the stuff about promoting Rod Johnston’s train business anymore on the website for Entercom Canada, Inc. I wonder if this was the issue which was causing problems for Nancy Vincent.
5. One of my pet theories for the hybrid was that if Lynn Johnston retired completely, her staff would have to find new jobs. I wonder if the shift in Entercom’s direction is due to the announcement of the hybrid. Now, no longer do the Lynnions have to pretend to do things other than with For Better or For Worse, since their future is assured.

In the comments that day I wrote:

While browsing for Nancy Vincent, I found this article about Canadore College alumni who work for Lynn Johnston

As near as I can tell, every member of her staff, except for Allison Zadorozny and now, Kate Johnston are Canadore alums. Allison Zadorozny is the only person on Lynn’s staff who joined Dr. Rod Johnston in his Community Waterfront Friends project. See:

What I find very intriguing is that that Dr. Rod Johnston was the Canadore College Director of the Dental Program from 1984 – 1987 and Nancy Vincent, graduated from Canadore College with a degree in Dental Hygiene from 1978. It’s interesting that while the other Canadore graduates had degrees related to what they do on For Better or For Worse, Nancy didn’t and she has definite ties to Rod Johnston’s field.

The connection between these events from May, and Lynn and Rod Johnston’s separation, and the sudden and mysterious departure of Nancy Vincent (and by mysterious, I mean there was no notice of her departure on the website and she had worked for Lynn for years), makes it obvious who the other woman was.

Just to confirm, I did a White Pages search of Corbeil, Ontario and found this listing:

Vincent, Nancy & Rod
304 Mac Pherson Dr
Corbeil, ON P0H 1K0
(705) 752-2104

It also makes the situation seem even more bizarre:

1. Through Canadore College or through dental work or both, Rod Johnston could have known Nancy Vincent for a period of time starting as early as 1984.

2. Nancy Vincent was Lynn’s number #1 staff person as her Executive Director.

3. Because of her background as a dental hygienist, it is highly likely that the professional connection to Rod, got her the job working for Lynn.

How long Rod’s relationship with Nancy was, and how long Lynn knew about it, I have no idea and I don’t care to know. I have not been through a divorce as a participant, only as a child of divorce or an uncle of divorce. I cannot imagine how I would feel if I discovered my best friend was having an affair with my husband.

I feel very badly for Lynn Johnston.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

It’s always sad to hear these stories - especially when we feel we know the people.

Anon NYC

3:22 PM  
Blogger April Patterson said...

OMG. This is very sad.

And that address you listed must be right down the street from the studio, which is at 353 MacPherson Drive.

Wow. I feel really bad. :(

4:45 PM  
Blogger April Patterson said...

Oddly, I had exchanged a couple of e-mails with Rod in late July/early August, and it appeared to be a shared e-mail address ("From: Rod & Lynn").

4:48 PM  
Blogger howard said...


MacPherson Drive. I thought it sounded familiar.

What were the e-mails with Rod about, and was there any hint he was no longer with Lynn at that time? Or rather I should say: Were there any hints it wasn't really Rod answering?

5:38 PM  
Blogger howard said...

Anon NYC,

I know just what you mean. Whenever I enjoy the work of an artist, whose material is heavily autobiographical, I feel like I understand them better than other people's works. Lynn Johnston's work is extremely autobiographical, moreso than most artists.

5:41 PM  
Blogger April Patterson said...

Well, remember when we had that discussion here about Rod and Katie having participated in an episode of Extreme Makeover: Home Edition? And I linked to some pictures at his website? Well, I noticed that one of the pictures that was posted was captioned as being Kate, but the person in the picture looked distinctly male. I wrote to ask if there'd been a mistake, and he wrote back that indeed, the picture wasn't of Katie, but of Rod himself. And I was the first person to notice after the picture had been up for a few years.

He "sounded" pretty much I would have expected him to sound. And there were no clues that anything was amiss, as far as I could tell.

5:55 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Why would the phone listing look like that? The way it's listed it's Nancy Vincent and Rod Vincent. Otherwise it would read Nancy Vincent and Rod Johnston. Besides, most online white pages are notoriously outdated - and updated only periodically, like once a quarter or once a year.

I think it's just coincidence that another MARRIED couple named Rod and Nancy Vincet live in Corbeil. I'm sure Corbeil's not huge - but those are all three pretty common names.

10:30 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The reason there is a telephone listing as Rod and Nancy Vincent is because Nancy's husband's (soon to be ex perhaps) name IS Rod Vincent. Never have to worry about shouting out the wrong name! Nancy Vincent workded for Dr. Rod Johnston for many many years in his dental practice as his restorative dental hygienist before being hired by Lynn. Nancy Vincent and Rod Johnston did work at Canadore College in the dental hygiene department. Nancy's husband Rod Vincent also worked at Canadore College for many years but has since left the college.
Rod Johnston and Nancy Vincent have since bought a house together in Corbeil, Ontario.

11:23 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Nancy Vincent and Rod Johnston have not bought a house together in Corbeil. Rod Johnston and Nancy's relationship ended as quickly as his marriage dissolved. He is currently involved with a staff member in his new Dental Office in North Bay, and is living somewhere outside Corbeil.

6:24 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Why is it that men with successful wives have so much trouble with their self esteem while women with successful husbands are for the most part proud and supportive of them?

7:15 AM  
Blogger howard said...


Why is it that men with successful wives have so much trouble with their self esteem while women with successful husbands are for the most part proud and supportive of them?

I read something about this once years ago. The article was an analysis of the type of men that very wealthy women date. The point of the article was that very wealthy men often do not look for very wealthy women to marry, but usually go for very attractive women. In contrast, the very wealthy woman usually went for a wealthy man, even if he was not as wealthy as the woman. It was important to the wealthy woman for her man to have the means to give her gifts, even if she could have bought them herself. The implication is that wealthy men do not marry for the purpose of having successful wives, whereas wealthy women marry for the purpose of having a successful husband.

I am not so sure in the case of Rod Johnston, the problem is self-esteem. There have been some clear moments in his past, where his wealthy wife has pulled “salary rank” on him and they did things which I expect he would not want to do. The big case in point was moving from Lynn Lake to Corbeil, forcing him to re-establish his medical practice and give up his dream of being the flying dentist to the First Nations people in the Lynn Lake area. Just judging from the comic strip treatment of John Patterson, it is easy to make a case against the idea that Lynn was “proud and supportive” of Rod; since a good number of the strips she did held his (John’s) behaviour up to public ridicule.

1:08 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

And all of you gossipers care so much about this why?? Leave the man and his family alone. He is a human being as you and I. YOU "think" you know it all...remember two sides to every story. I found it so "heroic that his ex had to plaster her story all over the media in every city...poor, poor me...get over it Lynn!!You think he is the only one in an unhappy marriage!!! Speaking from experience why stay where you are unhappy....move on!!!
He is a remarkable dentist and I will continue to support him!

5:48 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Lynn Johnston's more than taken her revenge against Rod, going on interviews and posting on YouTube about what a poor, wrong woman she was. I'm sure there are two sides to the story, which we haven't heard, because Rod Johnston has apparently more class than his ex-wife and didn't go on and on in the media.

Also, it's extremely irresponsible to post someone else's home address and phone on a blog without permission.

3:49 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Under no circumstance is cheating acceptable.
If you are unhappy then leave your marriage first before you carry on with someone else.

10:14 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Not one of you knows what actually went on.
So take your rude uneducated, gossipy opinions about these people and stuff them in your big mouth.
And get a life.

10:22 PM  
Blogger howard said...

It's been a long time since I wrote this one, and I keep getting Anonymous comments on it. Amazing! I have no other Blog entry with level of continued response.

11:18 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

It's in the top 5 results for Lynn Johnston's divorce. Just found out about this myself, and was a bit shocked really. I was wondering what became of all my old favorite comics artists. Most of them seem to have passed from this realm alas.

8:00 AM  
Blogger howard said...

In the top 5 results for Lynn Johnston's divorce. Impressive I guess for an old Blog that people seem to keep writing to. Anyway, Lynn Johnston herself confirmed publically it was Nancy Vincent in her panel at the Toronto Comic Arts Festival, which you can see on the youtube. It finally confirms my speculation.

5:17 PM  
Blogger howard said...

It appears that in 2010, Nancy Vincent went back to work in dentistry as a Treatment Specialist and that is where she works today. She still goes by the name Vincent, but in her biography she refers to her family generically, which I infer to mean she is talking about her kids and not her ex.

Rod Vincent still works at the West Ferris Secondary School as a teacher and a very successful coach of the girls hockey team. Press releases about him talk about how his daughter played hockey in the collegiate system.

3:26 PM  

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