October 31, 1924 – February 16, 2020
Hutchison – Dorothy Edna, commonly referred to as Edna, was born 31st October 1924 on a homestead outside of Leipzig (SK), though grew-up on a homestead outside of White Fox (SK). She passed suddenly on the 16th February 2020 at Nanaimo Seniors Village (Nanaimo, BC). The eldest of nine (9) children she grew-up in an impoverished but musical Cuban-Scot Catholic family, d/o Milton (Sid) Munford (1882-1940) and Clara Jamieson (1900-1985).
As a youngster she lived primarily in the White Fox/Garrick/Choiceland area of Saskatchewan and was schooled in the surrounding area called the Kirkwall School District ultimately completing grade 12. The family farmed on land that was not farmable and were, thus, very poor, like so many during this period, living in nothing much more than a sod shack at the beginning. Her Cuban born father, whom had immigrated into Canada in 1911, instilled good moral Catholic values in his family and tried his best to provide for his nine children and wife, though by the time Edna was sixteen her father had died suddenly and left her disabled mother and all the children destitute. If it wasn’t for the many caring neighbours and her uncle Alex Jamieson, the family would surely have been broken-up. Edna lived with a widowed lady for a time to help her out and at the same time provide her mother with some relief from so many mouths to feed.
Though, in 1942 she left home and area to work in the town cafeteria (The Horseshoe Bar) in Nipawin and remained there for five years undertaking waitressing employment to help support herself, her mother and her many young siblings.
In 1948 Edna left for Calgary (Alberta) and found work in the cafeteria of the now-closed and demolished Baker Memorial Sanatorium for tuberculosis patients, remaining in this position for about four more years before finding employment in the dry-cleaning business at various establishments within Calgary between 1953 and 1955. She married Wallace (Wally) Hamilton Hutchison, originally of Virden (Manitoba) but later of Calgary, in a United Church ceremony in 1956.
Some years later, after having her son and only child, Brian, she went back to work in the dry-cleaning business as a clothes-presser and remained in this area of employment until her retirement in June of 1982 when Edna retired from Deluxe Dry-Cleaners Ltd. (Calgary) after over twenty-six years in the business.
Edna was a very enthusiastic hiker and exercised daily. She was a long-time 5-pin and 10-pin bowler, shuffle-board player, hospital volunteer, card player, horseshoe pitcher, and craft hobbyist. She loved the dances and often would be found hauling her husband onto the dance floor! Always busy in retirement, she enjoyed her home, her husband & her son, along with her many family members and friends. Edna and her husband relished their retirement, spending part of their many years at their winter home in Mesa (Arizona) and the remainder of those years at their other home in Calgary. They also travelled extensively, via their RV, throughout the United States and Canada, with some international travel as well. Most notably, Edna was so proud of her ability to hike in and out of the Grand Canyon at age 71 after major appendectomy surgery six weeks before. In all, they had an extraordinarily happy and fulfilled life!
In their later years, to be closer to their son and better weather, they pulled-up-stake and moved from Calgary, where they had lived in their own built home for 49 years, to the City of Nanaimo and resettled themselves in a lovely retirement lodge (Berwick-On-The-Lake) in 2009. By 2011, Edna was having more issues with walking and eventually had to use a power wheelchair, though this did not get her down. She was later resettled into Nanaimo Seniors Village Retirement Home (full care facility) in 2011, where she finishes her story. Wally also moved to the same facility (assisted living unit) at the same time to be closer to Edna and daily you would find him venturing over to her section or she to his for regular visits. Their lives were full for each other and their son till the end. She was devoted to her husband and to her son, giving more than anyone could have asked of an incredible wife and mother.
Her loving husband and son are so very grateful to Berwick On The Lake, Nanaimo Seniors Village and the staff of both communities for the extraordinary care and home that they provided Edna and Wally over the many years. Special praise to our private caregivers – Kirsty and Barb – for their loving support during these years. We are also so indebted to the Townsite Medical Clinic (Nanaimo), many physicians, and Dr. Melissa Oberholster in particular, for their undying and unwavering care to the family since their arrival into Nanaimo. Lastly, enough cannot be said to and about their many friends and family members who cared about them to the end. Wally and Edna were an amazingly social couple who could make friends almost from the moment that they spoke to you – they made you feel like they always knew you, and you them!
Followed in death by her husband, Edna leaves to mourn her grieving son (Brian Wallace Hutchison) and son-in-law (Denis Alan Ostercamp), along with her “four-legged grandkids” (Sofie, Thistle, and Hamish), and two (2) surviving siblings – Mona Ar-Sister Munford-McDuff (Sardis, BC), and Linda Elizabeth Munford-Dickinson (Calgary, AB). Also to mourn are many friends, nieces, nephews and a few surviving cousins. She was predeceased by six (6) siblings – Chester Alexander Munford (1926-2018), Milton Clarence Munford (1927-1996), Murray Denton Munford (1933-2009), Christina Hally McHenry (1935-2013), Margaret Rose (aka, Aleciah Margo) Warren (1937-2011), and Mark Sylvester Munford (1938-2002). Also further predeceased by her “four-legged grandkids” whom she cherished: Trixie, Bullet, Penny, Winston, Contessa, Molly-Mae, Alexey, and Zoe.
Cremation arrangements were conducted by First Memorial Funeral Service (Nanaimo) and Cedar Valley Memorial Gardens (Cedar) and there will be no service at the request of the deceased and his family. Any donations in remembrance may be directed in her name to Crohn’s and Colitis Canada, BC SPCA, Ostomy Canada Society, Sheldrick Wildlife Trust, the BC & Yukon Branch of the Canadian Cancer Society, or World Wildlife Fund Canada.
An Ode to My Mother
God saw you getting tired
And a cure was not to be.
So he put his arms around you
And whispered “come to me”!
With tearful eyes I watched you
As you slowly slipped away.
And though I loved you so dearly
I could not make you stay.
Your golden heart stopped beating
Your tired hands finally put to rest.
God broke my heart to prove to me
That he only takes the best.
Your only son’s journey thru life lost his way today, and
The best God may take, of course it’s true.
But I do know not how to live another day, oh
My beating heart bleeds, mourns and cries so much for you!
And though, sadly, tomorrow will come yet again for me
I fear of another day and life without my guiding star.
But I am comforted in knowing that beautiful soul,
So I just whisper your name, and their you are.
Thank you for the kindness shared, my love,
Those wonderful memories of you will abound for many years to come
Forgive me though for more I couldn’t give you
But thank you for the loving person you made me become!
Us Musketeers were three, then two, and now this day we are. . .one!
Created partially by Frances and Kathleen Coelho with additional major content by Brian W. Hutchison