21 years gone. But my brother David will never be forgotten by his family.
He would take pride in his nieces and nephew! He would be encouraging my grandchildren in all their aspirations. But most of all, we would be laughing with him….big “fall on the floor” laughing! I hope you are watching over all of us Dave. Rest In Peace.
Betty Lou Sandlos
January 18, 2022
20 years have passed since that terrible day. That feeling that the unbelievable had happened persists. Gone are the great chin wags, the laughs, the clever retorts, the understanding, the support. All of that and more gone in one murderous act...so cruel, so full of hate. And why? How could Dave have done anything to make someone hate him so much? We likely will never know. But whoever you are or were, we hold you in contempt.
May you never Rest In Peace. That is the only justice we are allowed.
Betty Lou Sandlos
January 18, 2021
Have you considered notorious serial killer Bruce McArthur? He targeted gay men, lived near that area at the time, was also into bondage sex, and in Oct 31 2001 (months after Buller's death) he assaulted a man similarly by striking him from behind. Perhaps Buller's computer (work or personal) would show a dating website conversation with McArthur?
April 30, 2020
I spoke to BL and Paul this year, as I have done every year since David's murder. I found this year so difficult, it never gets any easier does it? I keep a framed photograph of David on my desk. Paul took it. I greet David almost every day, with love. Years ago I made some curtains for David and in return he gave me a beautiful watercolour which I treasure. I also have several paintings, originally to store, (I have a huge stairwell that holds some of the larger ones.) After speaking to BL I am so happy to say these paintings will be up for auction with the proceeds going to The Aids Committee of Toronto where I volunteered, 1985-1997. I hope the whole family approves as well, I am sure David would.
My love to all David's family and friends, thinking of you.
February 21, 2019
Thinking of you and David today
January 18, 2019
Sorry if this is random.
but i provided a tip to the police when this happened, and i was just surprised they never followed up with me, but i never heard back from them. just knew in my head if it was my family i would have wanted to know that they followed up on this lead.
April 2, 2018
I'm thinking of you all as this horror unfolds in Toronto. It may be that none of our theories were correct. Hugs to everyone, I'll be sending love and positive vibes your way.Take care. I'm here if you want to talk.
Marilyn Martin Xoxoxoxox
February 3, 2018
Good morning I am hoping that the family will approach the Toronto Police to see if there is any connection between Mr. Buller's murder to the heinous fiend, Bruce MacArthur, charged with the 5 murders of the missing men in Toronto. Could there be a link? I am a u of t employee, and have been since he was killed and we were left in shock and dismay when this happened. I have not forgotten him. I pray that his killer is brought to justice!
January 29, 2018
We will never forget you Dave. The pain of losing you always hurts but especially at this time of year. Your enemies are all gone at last. May you rest peacefully. Your family misses you to this day.
Betty Lou Sandlos
January 18, 2017
I was in the building at the time, and I was never questioned -- of course I would have come forward if I had seen or heard anything, but even David's photo didn't look at all familiar. The staff who had actual offices were called in and asked whether they kept knives in their offices and so on. But what distressed me was that when I went in the following weekend, to feed the rats in the sub-basement behavioral neuroscience lab, I came out via the main hall and startled a policeman who was sitting at a table by the main door. He said "How did you get in here?!" and I said I came in through the side door. "What side door??" he asked. So when they say they had the building sealed, I can say emphatically that was not the case.
March 3, 2016
15 years have passed. My brother David was a gift to me. Born when I was 10 years old, I was definitely his big sis! But over the years, we morphed into the best of friends. I miss the trips we might have taken, the laughs we might've shared, what I might've learned from Dave while enjoying a drink together. His humour was so sharp and left me gasping! No one can match him. Oh, how I miss you.
January 18th, 2016
David Buller was my cousin. My wife Valerie and I have been out of touch with David and the Buller/Sandlos family for many years, but our grief for David at the news of his untimely passing in such tragic circumstances was hard to bear. Immediate condolences were sent, but further communication did not happen. The sadness still lingers that his case remains unsolved, and our hearts go out his sister, Betty-Lou (also my cousin), the late Hank, Karyn and Lisa whose grief cannot be imagined.
July 22, 2015
As so many have already said, the tenth anniversary of David's death brings forth so much sadness and so many questions about the manner in which he died. I think all the time about the lost creative work, the missing conversations, and the younger members of our family who will never get to meet David.
I remember so many things. I sometimes think that it is the humorous moments that best keep David's memory alive. When I was about ten, David had the whole family rolling in stitches at a family dinner as he sang a medly of songs such as "You can't go Skating in a Buffalo Field," and "My Boomerang Won't Come Back." Where did he get this stuff?
Much Love, David. We miss you.
Feb 1, 2011
I'm so glad I got the chance to meet David's family and friends this week. I appreciated a chance to hear more about the circumstances of his death and things that have haunted me for so long, and to get to know David better through you. I hope together we can resolve the mysteries that surround his death. I'm sure the killer must also suffer daily from his actions. I cannot imagine that a person who cares about art would not.
Jan 20, 2011
This is the 10th anniversary of David's death. It is another occasion of reflection on his life and our loss. That loss has now been tempered by time. Good memories of Dave have taken their rightful place. It was inevitable that we would arrive at this stage of acceptance.
Those of us who knew Dave hold dear our own special memories of him. We all agree he had a rapier like wit. And we all have stories where a comment by Dave became a punch line remembered for years afterward. He was an observer of people and his own culture. He was always reading biographies, art theory and criticism, newspapers/sites, online postings and commenting on what provoked him.
Most of his humour was reactive to the absurdities he saw around him. But, he could sit down and write to be funny and often did so for his own amusement. He could have been a writer. If he had stayed in the Advertising stream at O.C.A.D. back in second year he probably would have been a creative director and used his writing skills. He admired stand-up comedians and talk show hosts of the 70's & 80's. He could have found a niche for himself as one – a bit of Cavett and Carson plus some Letterman – The David Buller Show.
I still find it unbelievable that he was murdered in the manner he was by someone who knew and planned to kill him.
Our loss as family and friends of David is egregious – the act of murder outrageous.
What continues to sadden me is that David had so much to share as a friend and give as a teacher. So many students have been deprived his knowledge, insight and humour. And, they don't know what they missed out on.
David as an artist? It's hard to imagine a fifty-year old as an "emerging artist" but in my opinion David was just that. (Think of the great American teacher and artist Hans Hofmann.)
After a major show of paintings fizzled and went unnoticed by the culturati David recognized painting couldn't be the centre of his work. (Painting was dead – again.) David began to transform his work. He took photos to generate images and ideas. Words began to appear on his canvases. Images and words were bonded through paint. He had transformed himself into a mature artist with years of Work ahead of him.
I often think about David's art work and what it would be like if events had been different. The Work would be like the man who created it – intelligent, insightful, intimate, relevant and often playful.
Jan 18th, 2011
I recall being deeply shaken at the time of David's murder and I still find it chilling. I was a graduate student at U of T at the time, and am now a chaplain at U of T. Though I did not know him personally I extend wishes for peace and healing to his family and all who knew and loved him. It is great to see examples of his work here, and to know that he is not forgotten.
Ralph Carl Wushke
Jan 18, 2011
My name is West Suhanic. I was a friend of your uncle. We were just starting to become better friends when he was murdered. Even 10 years on, I feel deprived of a friendship that would have grown.
I still miss him. His obituary is still on my fridge. I can't/won't take it down.
I am sending you this email because I want you and your family to know that Dave may be missing but he is not and will not be forgotten.
West and Eduarda Suhanic
Jan 17, 2011
Ten years after his death, my uncle is still acutely missed by family and friends. It seems like yesterday that he was with us - making us laugh loudly and think deeply. Yet, as the anniversary date prods us to reflect on the time and space that has passed since the loss of Dave, it is astonishing to contemplate the dramatic changes in each of our lives in a decade.
How we wish we could have shared all of it with him! He would have been proud. There is no doubt we would have been proud of Dave as well for inevitable further professional accomplishments and for the personal contributions he would have made through his dedicated relationships with us. This website is a wonderful tribute representing the many aspects of Dave's life and work, and it helps to fill the gap in our lives as we continue to mourn.
Thank you to Karyn and Lisa for creating it. My family remains hopeful that one day, answers will be found about why this loss had to happen. History counsels patience...
Lisa Sandlos, niece of Dave Buller
Jan 16, 2011
I have just read through and sifted through the images, sounds and words for the first of many times to come, no doubt ... it is a sensoral feast. So incredibly moving and inspiring these windows into a truly gifted and beautiful soul. I am at a loss for words to convey how troubling it is that David's murder hasn't been solved, however this symbiotic expression of his life's work and his tragic death is particularly encouraging to remember.
Jan 14, 2011
I am very grateful to my daughter Karyn and her partner Lisa for setting up this website so that everyone can read about my amazing brother, his life as an artist and art educator. His life ended tragically, and we always hope that some answers will be found as to why another human being would choose to end Dave's life with murder. You were a great bro!
Love, your sister B.L.
Jan 12, 2011