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LYDIA MILLAR (published on January 08, 2009)

LYDIA MILLAR June 20, 1915 - December 31, 2008 Peacefully with her older son by her side, Lydia Millar passed away in the last hours of 2008 at Rosewood personal care home in Stonewall after a courageous battle with cancer. Left to mourn her loss are sons Jim of Balmoral, David (Janette), grandchildren Daniel, Hayley and Grace all of Essex, England, nephew Irvin John Molter of Winnipeg and many loving in-laws all of County Antrim, Northern Ireland. She was predeceased by her husband John in 1991, sisters Emma in 1998, Ella in 1936, mother Karoline 1968, and father Louis 1936. Lydia's wealth and treasure were her family and friends. Since moving to Lions Manor in Stonewall in 2000, she became active in the Anglican Church of the Ascension and services there were of great solace and comfort to her. Her many neighbours and fellow parishioners missed her deeply when she moved to Rosewood last June. They never failed to ask about her, often dropping in to visit her there where she made many more friends in only a short time. Lydia and John operated a small tourist camp at Laclu, ON and hosted many campers and friends there from 1955 till 2004. She was a member of the Independent Order Daughters of the Empire (IODE) since 1950 having earned a life membership in 1998. She lived in the same house on Niagara Street for 49 years where she maintained yet another group of close friends. And having been raised and christened in Winnipeg's North End, she visited by phone with one of her last surviving childhood friends from Trinity Lutheran Church congregation just before Christmas. Coming from a small family, she grew close to a large family of second cousins who moved to Saskatchewan in the 1920s. If she hasn't visited them since the 1950s, some of them visited her until the 1980s at Laclu and she corresponded and phoned regularly until most of these contemporaries passed away in the late 1990s. Though she was a city girl, and John was a country boy, after he introduced her to Balmoral in 1936 she developed still another group of friends with whom she shared long and close traditions until the end. Since meeting John in 1935 after he immigrated to Canada in 1927, it was Lydia who encouraged him to maintain a correspondence with his siblings whom he never expected to see again and whom she had never met. Then, in the 1970s, she and John began traveling to Ireland where she was adopted lovingly and enthusiastically by her new-found in-laws, and to England where she loved to visit her second son and later his family who reciprocated through many summer visits spent with her at Laclu. She kept a little datebook since the 1930s and until the last few years consulted it almost daily before picking up the phone. Many of her friends grew used to a cheery annual happy birthday or an apology if she missed it by a day or two. Friends from all of these groups exchanged calls and cards with her even though they may be far away and she hadn't seen them for years, even decades. She had an uncanny memory for such special dates involving special people. Cremation has taken place in the presence of her family with interment planned for a beautiful sunny, summer day at Chapel Lawn beside her husband of 51 years. A more immediate public service will take place at Lions Community Centre, 5 Keith Cosens Drive, Stonewall, Wednesday, January 14 at 2:00 p.m. with Rev. Peter Flynn officiating. Her family's sincere thanks and lasting gratitude go out to Doctor Graham and Dr. Mohamdee and the wonderful, caring staff and volunteers at Rosewood. In lieu of flowers, mourners who so wish are encouraged to send contributions in her name to Rosewood Lodge, 513 1st St. N., Stonewall, R0C 2Z0. Chapel Lawn 885-9715

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