OBITUARY

Edith Winifred Bourchier

June 28, 1925January 20, 2021

With heavy hearts, we share the news that Edith Winifred Bourchier (née Baker), known to family and friends as Win, passed away at The Elden of Bradford Retirement Residence on Wednesday, January 20, 2021, at the remarkable age of 95. She now joins her beloved husband George (1998) and son Christopher (1978), and leaves behind her sister Marguerite Adam, cousin Myrtle Crawford, her children Louise (Milton), Anne (Geoff), Frazer (Marcie), and grandchildren, D’ette, Kimiko (Brendan), Raquel, Olivia, Sophia, Tenal, Bryson, and Jaden. Born June 28, 1925, in Klock, Ontario, Win was the eldest child of Emeline Lucinda Morrow and Frederick Thomas Baker, sister to Tom and Marguerite, and half-sister to Charlie and Fred Baker. Win did not have an easy life as a child. Her father passed away when she was 10 years old, and then at the age of 15, when her mother fell sick, Win had to quit school and work to support the family. At 21, her mother passed away as well, leaving Win as sole support to her younger siblings. She was a hard worker with many jobs: wool winder at Bates & Innes Woolen Mill during World War II, sales lady at Darou’s Bakery, receptionist for the local Dr. MacDowall, and salesperson for Rexall Drugs. In 1951, Win moved to Toronto, where she studied Mothercraft nursing and worked as a Well Baby nurse, developing close and long-lasting relationships with her colleagues and many of the families for whom she cared. However, after hearing about a job offer with isolation pay at a mine in Elliot Lake, Win, always up for a challenge, took a leap of faith and headed north to work as the bookkeeper for Northspan Uranium Mines. Playing pranks with the mine’s handsome geological engineer, George Bourchier, swiftly blossomed into love, and then commenced a year of long-distance courtship with love letters sent back and forth between Sudbury and Temagami, while Win worked concurrently as a neonatal nurse at Sudbury General hospital and at Falconbridge Mine in Sudbury. Win and George were married on September 2, 1957 in East Toronto. Win and George made their first family home in Downsview, Ontario while George worked passionately on his career as a physics teacher at Earl Haig Secondary School. For two years, Win worked as a secretary in the Obstetrics Department at Toronto East General Hospital. Soon after, Win attended night school and completed her high school diploma, all while raising four small children and fostering babies in need for the Children’s Aid Society. In 1967, Win and George purchased an acreage of farmland in King Township, originally owned by George’s Uncle Ned, and they moved the family north. Here they built their forever home, fondly dubbed “The Manor,” where many memories were created: skating and tobogganing in the winters, celebrating lively Christmases with extended family, and cultivating a pristine, weed-free garden that was harvested and preserved by Win to feed the family during winter. Having grown up during the Depression and WWII years, Win appreciated the value of being frugal. She was a consummate homemaker. Home-cooked meals (including tasty desserts!) were on the table every night when George got home from work. She sewed dresses for her girls, painted rooms throughout the house, and stripped and upholstered furniture. And what a hostess! The door was always open for friends and family, and folks would travel many miles for a visit, a cup of tea, and a hearty meal. Win’s kind and considerate nature meant that she made friends easily - whether through the Parent-Teachers Association, square dancing, teas, bazaars in Kettleby village hall, Anglican Church Women’s Guild, Concerned Citizens association, Dickens Fellowship, St. Paul’s Runnymede Altar Guild, her book and opera clubs, Bible studies or Gaelic classes, and many more circles. Always a trouper, Win put on a brave face no matter where George’s adventures led her and the children; canoeing, portaging, and hiking the wilderness were always part of summer fun. Win loved to travel, driving across Canada with the family on several occasions. After George retired, they traveled together to Newfoundland and the Maritimes, the U.K., Australia, and New Zealand. Later, after George, the love of her life, passed away, she traveled as far as Alaska and South Africa. Anyone who knew Win knew how much she loved to learn, and to read! Her passion for reading was kindled during her early years in the Ottawa Valley; her father made sure there were always books in the house. Win loved to tell us about the time when her mother had asked her father to buy essential kitchen supplies while he was in town, and he instead came back with a car full of books, to her mother’s marked chagrin. Later in life, her favourites were Charles Dickens’ novels and historical fiction, but she also couldn’t get enough of Louise Penny’s mystery novels and the Outlander series. Win was well-read in world history, the British monarchy, and geography, and she was often consulted for her expertise by many in her acquaintance. A naturally-gifted writer and raconteur extraordinaire, Win loved to keep in touch with her extensive network of friends and family all around the world, from her Mothercraft friends, her daughters’ former piano teachers, George’s former students, to distant cousins of the family. She was such a talented writer, in fact, that her numerous letters to the editor got her a job offer at the newspaper, which she graciously declined. So many of us had our days brightened by Win’s spirited storytelling! Some of her other special talents included: reciting lengthy poems and lyrics from memory, composing cheeky limericks, outsmarting her grandchildren at cribbage, maintaining a steady hand during cut-throat games of Pick-up sticks, and baking all sorts of delicious goodies for her children and grandchildren. Win’s kindness, determination, keen wit, and great wisdom from life experience will be deeply missed by all who knew her.

In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to: Covenant House, St. Paul’s Runnymede Anglican Church, King Township Food Bank, or Christ Church Anglican, Kettleby. A Celebration of Life will be held at a later date when pandemic restrictions are lifted.

Services

No public services are scheduled at this time. Receive a notification when services are updated.

Memories

Edith Winifred Bourchier

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Eavan O'Connor

January 31, 2021

Dear Geoff and Anne,
Your Mom is undoubtedly a beautiful person. After living a life with so many struggles, she still shared so much with others. A person of true courage and strength, with convictions to be inspired by. Please accept my deepest sympathy for your loss.
Eavan

Carol and Norm Guertin

January 31, 2021

Dear Anne and Jeff,
Please accept our deepest condolences to loss of your Mom. We had the privilege of meeting her and never forgot that.
Our hearts go out to you.
Carol and Norm.

Mary Taylor

January 29, 2021

To Anne, Louise and Frazer,
What a beautiful memorial to a truly incredible lady. Aunt Win embodied so many wonderful qualities - she was intelligent, generous , gracious, always welcoming, a raconteur extraordinaire with an incredible sense of humour, as well as being extremely practical and pragmatic, and always up for a challenge, (as I learned early on, spending many hours paddling a canoe with her on our numerous excursions to Northern Ontario!) Most of all, she loved her family, and created a beautiful, loving home, where everyone was always welcome. I always felt welcome there, and will always cherish the many memories I have of spending time with her.
Please accept my sincere condolences on the passing of your mom - I so am so sorry for your loss, but hopefully you can take comfort in knowing that she is back with Uncle George now.
Take care,
Love, Mary

Mark and Lynn Critch

January 27, 2021

Dear Geoff and Anne,

We will be praying for comfort and peace for your entire family in this difficult time. I trust the fond memory of time well spent over the year and the laughter together will help ease the pain and grief over the coming days and weeks. Matthew 5:4 "Blessed are those who mourn, for they will be comforted". Our condolences,

Mark and Lynn Critch

Shelly Cuddy

January 27, 2021

Dear Geoff and Anne,

My deepest sympathies to you and your family. I wish you peace and comfort as you grieve.

Shelly

Sara Rawski

January 26, 2021

Dear Geoff and Anne,

My sincerest condolences to you and your family during this difficult time.

Sincerely,

Sara

Shelley Fogelman

January 26, 2021

Dear Geoff and Anne,

My thoughts and prayers are with you and all your family during this difficult time. May her memory forever be a blessing.

Sincerely, Shelley

Melissa Rosato

January 26, 2021

Dear Geoff and family,

The cycle of life: beautiful, heart wrenching, filled with so much learning and love. And sadness and pain too with the transition from life on earth to what lies ahead for all of us eventually. As you say good bye to Ms. Edith and reflect on a lifetime of memories and happiness, my thoughts are with your family. A mother's influence and impact extends to our entire human community, and indeed all of nature. What a legacy to honour and pay tribute to collectively.

Sincerely, Melissa

bill and Sandy Weiler

January 26, 2021

To All of Aunt Win's Family:
We send our deepest sympathy to each of you.
We will never forget the wonderful times spent with Aunt Win over many years. Both in Washington, King City and at the Eldon.
She was never short of interesting stories about her family, travels and many adventures. We loved the story of how her and Uncle George met. We will miss Aunt Win very much.
May God bring you peace during this time of great loss.
We are always here for you.
love
Sandy and Bill Weiler

Linda Stanlake

January 22, 2021

Dear Louise, Anne & Fraser
So sorry to hear that Aunt Winnie has passed away. I will forever remember the visits at Mom & Dads and in Toronto & King City with all of you. Sending you all, much love.
Linda

FROM THE FAMILY