BROWNELL – Margaret of St. Thomas, Ontario passed away peacefully at Valleyview Home on Thursday, February 11, 2016 at the age of 94. Beloved wife of the late Delbert Brownell. Margaret is survived by children Dianne Jones (Ray) and Ron Brownell (Bette); grandchildren Ronda Bartha (Ken), Michelle Sherwin (Steve), Scott Jones, Lesley McLellan (Dan); great grandchildren Rilee Steckler (Jordan), Megan White (Roman), Logan Bartha (fiancée Alexa), Spencer Bartha, Allie McLellan, Katelyn McLellan, Grant McLellan and great-great grandson Eli Steckler. Also survived by sister Joyce Hibbs of Ajax Ontario and nieces and nephews Rick, Brad, Bruce, Lee, Kim, Greg, Ken and Krista across Ontario.
Marg was one of Jehovah’s Witnesses. She donated her time to helping others understand the Bible.
She loved her family and often organized surprise days for her children and grandchildren where she would decorate the rec room and shower them with little gifts, just for nothing. One year as a special surprise for everyone she bought us all sweatshirts for the cottage with our names embroidered on them along with the name of the town where our family cottage is…Haliburton.
Marg was very generous, once opening her home to a friend who was homeless due to a fire in the Chestnut Street Apartments. She had a wacky sense of humour. For example, she once bought a pig’s head in a market in Windsor, then invited everyone for dinner and had a big unveiling with the dining room table all decorated in a fancy way. There was the pig head with apple in the mouth, and a plastic horsefly on the snout.
Marg came from a musical family and played piano by ear from the age of five. Her father accompanied her on the violin and her mother and sister Joyce sang. Karaoke might be popular today, but back in the fifties she actually cut a record with Decca records. Mom played the piano at the Golden Slipper, a dance hall in Haliburton. In later years, she overcame a struggle with anxiety and depression to volunteer at retirement homes in the area, where she led singsongs of all the old favourites with the residents.
Mom was a great cook. When we were kids, we were dirt poor. She could turn a can of Prem into a gourmet roast. She also made the best beef stew, a real comfort food. One of Mom’s favourite things to do was bake. The family remembers her flaky pastry as the base of her delicious Maid of Honour tarts. Oddly enough, Mom didn’t like making cookies but she was the star of pies and squares. The champion dessert was the four layer chocolate cake with whipped cream filling. Kids coming by for a visit with their parents loved the ice cream sandwiches rolled in sprinkles or chocolate chips. It was a sad day when everyone started watching their weight and sugar count….the baking took a sharp decline!
Another talent Mom pursued was knitting…delicate baby sweater sets, then afghans, and scarves of all colours.
She will be greatly missed by her family and many friends. We wish to publicly acknowledge the superior care she received at CP Place in Valleyview over a four year period. We consider the staff to be angels delivering compassionate care that we could no longer provide.
Arrangements have been entrusted to the Shawn Jackson Funeral Home 31 Elgin Street, St. Thomas (519-631-0570). Cremation has taken place. Private interment of ashes in Elmdale Cemetery at a later date. Personal condolences can be made at www.shawnjacksonfuneralhome.com.
For more information about this obituary visit http://www.shawnjacksonfuneralhome.com.