MARIA FISCHER, 1920-2007
Maria died peacefully in her sleep at home on October 3, 2007. Many people in Ladysmith will remember her as â€œthe old lady with the red cat,â€ which followed her faithfully to the Post Office and Credit Union.
Maria retired to Ladysmith from Saskatchewan in 1986 and loved her views of the ocean and the mountains. She enjoyed exploring the parks, trails, and back ways with her adventurous, beloved granddaughter Marissa. Picnics at Evening Cove and Blue Heron Park, swims in the Nanaimo River, ice cream in Chemainus, and lunches at the Red Rooster (now sadly gone) were all favorites of hers.
She worked hard at growing fruit trees, vegetables and flowers in her huge back yard, although her success was limited both by the poor soil and by her own reluctance to remove any â€œvolunteerâ€ plants that sprang up.
Some will remember Maria from earlier days when she was active in the Friends of the Holland Creek Trail. Until just a few years ago she liked to show off her hiking stamina by fast-marching ahead of us up the trail, only to find a resting spot where she could puff on a cigarette until we caught up.
Others may recall her visits with coffee and cookies to their picket lines. She was a lifelong believer in social justice and worker solidarity.
Maria was a voracious reader, a lover of books, and an ardent supporter of the local bookstore in its various incarnations over the years.
Our mother was a feisty and tenacious woman determined to live her life independently to the end, and she mostly succeeded. We say â€œmostlyâ€ because in truth her cats had a great deal of influence over her daily decisions.
She will be sorely missed.