OBITUARY

Anna Gupta

April 6, 1921November 5, 2018
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Anna Mathews Gupta was born on April 6, 1921, in Kottayam, Kerala, India. Kerala is a state in the southern part of India, bordering the southwestern coast, beside the Indian Ocean. It is known for its high rate of literacy and relatively high percentage of Christians, in a predominantly Hindu country. Anna was the second youngest in a large family. Anna's family lived in an ancestral home on the outskirts of the city, in what is known as the “backwaters,” a scenic area, on the banks of a river. Life revolved around the river, which was not just a source of transportation and food. Anna recalled bathing in the river, and jumping in for fun many times a day as a young child. She grew to be a skilled swimmer. As a teenager, Anna wanted to be a doctor. She applied to Vellore Christian Medical College in the adjacent state of Tamil Nadu, but was told the college was not accepting females into the medical program till the following year. Rather than wait a year (she has always been slightly impatient), she accepted an offer to the nursing program, enrolling at Vellore at the age of 17. Anna trained first as a nurse and midwife. She recalled delivering many babies on her own, in remote villages, under very difficult conditions. Over the years, Anna worked up the ranks at Vellore to become an o.r. nurse, head nurse, “sister tutor” (clinical instructor) and administrator. While at Vellore, Anna's faith continued to grow, as she was exposed to people of many Christian denominations, and indeed, people of many faiths. Although Vellore had been founded by Christian missionaries, its vision was to provide outstanding medical care and healing to all individuals, regardless of their financial situation, and regardless of their faith. Anna was inspired by the stories of Dr. Ida S. Scudder, and Dr. Ida B., as well as by the many other missionaries she came to know, work alongside, and befriend. Twice during the 1950's Anna won scholarships to attend university in the U.S., at Wayne State in Detroit, obtaining both her Bachelor's and Master's degrees in Nursing. During her Master’s, Anna focused on the development of international nursing degree programs. While studying in Detroit, Anna explored Michigan and parts of Canada on excursions and holidays with friends, who were often themselves the families of her missionary friends. After earning each degree, Anna returned to Vellore. Anna was subsequently hired as Dean of the College of Nursing, Delhi University, in New Delhi India. It was there that she met and married her husband of nearly 40 years, Sunil in 1961. Sunil was a career army officer, serving in the Indian Army when it was an extension of the British Army. He was a Hindu, from Bengal, a different state of India. Theirs was a “love match” (as opposed to an arranged marriage) and a “mixed marriage” (being of two different faiths), unique among all their siblings, and very unusual (if not downright scandalous) for the time. Both Anna and Sunil were greatly influenced by the life and times of Mahatma Gandhi, by India's struggle for independence from the British, and by the ideal of a united, democratic, free India, a country that strove for tolerance and harmony among people of various ethnicities, languages and religions. Jaya was born two years later, in 1963. In 1968, the family immigrated to Canada, settling in Windsor. Anna had been sponsored by the University of Windsor to to serve as Professor of Nursing, and to launch its Bachelor of Science in Nursing program. Anna worked at the university for many years, going on to become the Director of the School of Nursing for two terms. After her retirement, she continued to be active in research, setting up conferences and fundraising for the university. She was awarded the title of Professor Emeritus, and subsequently was a recipient of the prestigious Clark Award, for outstanding voluntary service to the University of Windsor. Anna has always seen herself as a nurse, first and foremost. She is a beloved teacher and mentor to many generations of nurses. Anna was active as a volunteer in many educational, social, and philanthropic organizations. She was a founding member of the South Asian Centre of Windsor. She did early work in breast cancer screening and awareness. She was active in her church (first Knox, then St. Andrew's Presbyterian). She was very active in fundraising for Vellore, which also necessitated committee work with the Christian Council of Churches. An excellent cook, Anna had a reputation as a gracious hostess. Her home was a nexus for friends and family from near and far, and a safe haven for students a long way from home. Anna loved to travel, and saw much of the the world. But Windsor, ON was home for over 50 years, on the banks of another river. No flowers please. In lieu, donations gratefully accepted to either the University of Windsor (“Anna Gupta Scholarship Fund”), or to CMCHospitals.ca (“Anna Gupta Nursing Scholarship”). Please join us in remembering Anna by visiting her memorial at www.andersonfuneralhomewindsor.com.

Services

  • Funeral Service Saturday, November 10, 2018
  • Visitation Friday, November 9, 2018
  • Visitation Friday, November 9, 2018
REMEMBERING

Anna Gupta

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Carol Foley

November 10, 2018

Dear Jaya:

It was a pleasure to have you and your Mother join us for our monthly Chapel services at Chateau Park. We sensed the strength of your Mother's spirit and appreciated your support and participation in our services.
Be assured of our prayers for God's comfort for you during the days ahead as you adjust to the loss of a very special lady.

God bless you!
Your friends from The Salvation Army

Thomas Jacob

November 10, 2018

What a journey, 97 years of blissful life. Creator makes every creations the same way, but few like Chinnochamma (Anna Gupta- my Aunt) walks on the path carrying the torch of enlightment and awakening. You will continue to live in me till my last breath as a person of character, self made under Gods loving guidance. You designed a purpose for your life and the design was perfect and wonderful. I still can feel the softness of your hand and love of your touch and sweetness of your smile. Tipu I love you and I continue to feel Chinnochamma's presence in you. Chinnochamma is not Resting In Peace (RIP) but Living in Peace in you. Stay blessed n blissful to carry on the legend of your Amma and my ever loving Aunt, my second mother.
Kochumon or Mohan to Chinnochamma

Annie Sam

November 10, 2018

I had the good fortune of spending a few days with Ammachi when she visited us in Mumbai ...and I was in awe of her. She told me the story of her life and you can’t help but admit that she was an amazing woman of her times.
Her magnanimous personality was so inspiring. She could recall all her classmates n teachers n friends n she was in touch with their families. She told me Indian women need to come out of the kitchens and contribute to society . She is one person whom u meet and will never forget . Posting one pic of hers with my late mother in law who was her niece and another amazing woman

Suzane (Sneha) Thomas

November 9, 2018

Windsor Ammachy has always held a special place in our family. She was our Ammachy's aunt, although being almost the same age, they were friends first and foremost. When the two of them were together it was easy to see the love and sisterhood they shared.

To my parents, their siblings, and my cousins Windsor Ammachy was a hip, young lady. She was always full of love, joy, and laughter. We were always sure we were going to have fun when she was around. We will miss her greatly and she will continue to have a special place in our hearts.

Kuruvilla (Vinu) Uthup

November 9, 2018

A very nicely written obituary. I am sure that is how she would have wanted to be remembered.
She came to visit us in Goregaon, Mumbai and I remember taking her to the market. She wanted to buy fruits. I remember how happy she was when we went to the market...talking to the fruit sellers, picking the fruits, coming back home and enjoying all of it. Tropical fruits , that's what she called it.

And, that's what we will remember about her. Taking the time to meet with family, encouraging us by her own example and showing us how to get on with life.

Asha Thomas

November 9, 2018

Our beloved Kochamma and Ammachi, forever in our hearts. Kochamma was so many things to so many people, truly inspirational. For us she was family and leaves precious memories of gracious hospitality , a bountiful table , quiet conversations , a healing touch, the priceless gift of time as she stretched herself to be with us in our seminal events. Tupu, we are with you in celebrating an amazing inspirational life and with you in grief at loss

Sangeeta Lall Kumar

November 9, 2018

Dear Jaya, our deepest condolences. Anna Auntie was so generously loving. There are just so many cherished memories: Christmas cookies, Kerala curried fish, and other yummy treats in her beautifully decorated home every December. So full of life as she playfully interacted with my son as a toddler (photo from 2004). Her hospitality. Her brilliance. Her generosity.
Rest In Peace Auntie. 🙏🏽💕🙏🏽

Thampi Thomas

November 9, 2018

Mini and I visited C Kochamma and Tupu in July 2012. She will always be in our hearts and minds.

Shirley Whitfield

November 9, 2018

Mrs. Gupta has been a big influence in my life, both as a student nurse, at U of W, and later as a Clinical Nursing Instructor, under her gracious direction ! She was an amazing lady, and will be missed by the Nursing community of Windsor & all the other locations where she was involved ! Rest with God, Anna, and Blessings to your family !

Sheiba Gomes

November 9, 2018

Anna Gupta , C Kochamma Ammachi for us.
The period 1921, the place pre independence India : A little girl was born in a fairly well to do family in Kottayam.By 1940 that young 19 year old lady decided to leave the safety and comfort of her home and join the nursing program at CMC Vellore. She took off !! blazing her way through hurdles and created for herself a career in the field of Nursing. ,touching lives and reaching heights that were truly high,.She inspired each of us to reach out beyond our comfort zone ,to stand up for what we believe in and most importantly taught us what it means to be a woman with a heart of gold and an iron will, balancing career with home, family and friends.My grand aunt was way way beyond her time. We will fondly remember as the courageous Ammachi Today, she takes on her last solo journey.,May the good Lord be with her....
Bye, C Kochamma Ammachi.

Biography

Anna Mathews Gupta was born on April 6, 1921, in Kottayam, Kerala, India. Kerala is a state in the southern part of India, bordering the southwestern coast, beside the Indian Ocean. It is known for its high rate of literacy and relatively high percentage of Christians, in a predominantly Hindu country. Anna was the second youngest in a large family. Anna's family lived in an ancestral home on the outskirts of the city, in what is known as the “backwaters,” a scenic area, on the banks of a river. Life revolved around the river, which was not just a source of transportation and food. Anna recalled bathing in the river, and jumping in for fun many times a day as a young child. She grew to be a skilled swimmer.
As a teenager, Anna wanted to be a doctor. She applied to Vellore Christian Medical College in the adjacent state of Tamil Nadu, but was told the college was not accepting females into the medical program till the following year. Rather than wait a year (she has always been slightly impatient), she accepted an offer to the nursing program, enrolling at Vellore at the age of 17. Anna trained first as a nurse and midwife. She recalled delivering many babies on her own, in remote villages, under very difficult conditions. Over the years, Anna worked up the ranks at Vellore to become an o.r. nurse, head nurse, “sister tutor” (clinical instructor) and administrator. While at Vellore, Anna's faith continued to grow, as she was exposed to people of many Christian denominations, and indeed, people of many faiths. Although Vellore had been founded by Christian missionaries, its vision was to provide outstanding medical care and healing to all individuals, regardless of their financial situation, and regardless of their faith. Anna was inspired by the stories of Dr. Ida S. Scudder, and Dr. Ida B., as well as by the many other missionaries she came to know, work alongside, and befriend. Twice during the 1950's Anna won scholarships to attend university in the U.S., at Wayne State in Detroit, obtaining both her Bachelor's and Master's degrees in Nursing. During her Master’s, Anna focused on the development of international nursing degree programs. While studying in Detroit, Anna explored Michigan and parts of Canada on excursions and holidays with friends, who were often themselves the families of her missionary friends. After earning each degree, Anna returned to Vellore.
Anna was subsequently hired as Dean of the College of Nursing, Delhi University, in New Delhi India. It was there that she met and married her husband of nearly 40 years, Sunil in 1961. Sunil was a career army officer, serving in the Indian Army when it was an extension of the British Army. He was a Hindu, from Bengal, a different state of India. Theirs was a “love match” (as opposed to an arranged marriage) and a “mixed marriage” (being of two different faiths), unique among all their siblings, and very unusual (if not downright scandalous) for the time. Both Anna and Sunil were greatly influenced by the life and times of Mahatma Gandhi, by India's struggle for independence from the British, and by the ideal of a united, democratic, free India, a country that strove for tolerance and harmony among people of various ethnicities, languages and religions. Jaya was born two years later, in 1963.
In 1968, the family immigrated to Canada, settling in Windsor. Anna had been sponsored by the University of Windsor to to serve as Professor of Nursing, and to launch its Bachelor of Science in Nursing program. Anna worked at the university for many years, going on to become the Director of the School of Nursing for two terms. After her retirement, she continued to be active in research, setting up conferences and fundraising for the university. She was awarded the title of Professor Emeritus, and subsequently was a recipient of the prestigious Clark Award, for outstanding voluntary service to the University of Windsor. Anna has always seen herself as a nurse, first and foremost. She is a beloved teacher and mentor to many generations of nurses.
Anna was active as a volunteer in many educational, social, and philanthropic organizations. She was a founding member of the South Asian Centre of Windsor. She did early work in breast cancer screening and awareness. She was active in her church (first Knox, then St. Andrew's Presbyterian). She was very active in fundraising for Vellore, which also necessitated committee work with the Christian Council of Churches.
An excellent cook, Anna had a reputation as a gracious hostess. Her home was a nexus for friends and family from near and far, and a safe haven for students a long way from home. Anna loved to travel, and saw much of the the world. But Windsor, ON was home for over 50 years, on the banks of another river.
No flowers please. In lieu, donations gratefully accepted to either the University of Windsor (“Anna Gupta Scholarship Fund”), or to CMCHospitals.ca (“Anna Gupta Nursing Scholarship”). Please join us in remembering Anna by visiting her memorial at www.andersonfuneralhomewindsor.com.