Mildred Sarah Maria
June 21, 1925 ~ October 29, 2014
“Loved ones, when you write my obituary,
say this: Once, sitting still, she changed into a tiger.”
Mildred Tremblay, from “Reading Obituaries”
On Wednesday October 29, Mildred, known as Sarah later in her life, left us gently, full of light and grace, with loving daughters at her side. She was predeceased by her loving husband Ross in 2010 and is deeply grieved by her 6 daughters Suzanne, Leila, Anita, Lorraine, Joan and Mia, her 10 grandchildren and 3 great-grandchildren, and many dear friends from both her writing and meditation groups. Her daughters were her pride and joy and the centre of her life.
Mildred Sarah Maria Ratchford was born in Kenora, Ontario. A childhood friend said the following about her: “Millie was easily the most beautiful girl in Kenora but it was her humour and lightheartedness that charmed everyone.” She met and married Rosaire Tremblay in 1947. The couple lived in Victoria, Edmonton, Montreal & Toronto before moving to Campbell River in 1960, then to Nanaimo in 1970.
Sarah was a strong supporter of women’s rights, an active environmentalist and a very talented poet & writer with 3 books published by Oolichan Books: her collection of short stories “Dark Forms Gliding”, and 2 books of poetry: “Old Woman Comes Out of Her Cave” and “The Thing About Dying”. She was the recipient of many awards including the Vancouver International Writers’ Festival Award for poetry, the League of Canadian Poets Award, The Arc National Poetry Award and the Stephan Leacock, Orillia Award for humour, and was once the judge for a Canada-wide poetry contest.
A feisty, brilliant, fiercely truthful and radiantly loving being, those close to Sarah also knew and loved her sometimes dark humour and “Irish impishness”; however core to her life was her profound belief in loving kindness and “one-ness”, and in the words of one of her daughters “she so desperately wanted, with the blinding brilliance of her whole dear heart, for every last being’s happiness”.
Rest in peace beautiful dreamer – together forever, forever together.
“The thing about dying is, I won’t get over it; I can’t say, well, that sure taught me a lesson – Let’s go home and have a drink.”
~ Mildred Tremblay, from “The Thing About Dying”
Sarah’s “A-wake” was held on Nov. 1, 2014. In lieu of flowers, if anyone wishes to make a donation to the
Haven Society in Mildred’s name, she would