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DOROTHY MARGUERITE FINCH (published on March 05, 2011)

DOROTHY MARGUERITE FINCH On February 26, 2011 at Portage District General Hospital in Portage La Prairie, MB, Dorothy Marguerite Finch (nee Whidden) passed away at the age of 86. Dorothy was predeceased by her parents Charles and Elizabeth Whidden, and her brother Bill. She is survived by her brother Harry (Lois); her sister-in-law Beryl; her husband, Wilfred; her children Elspeth (Randy), John (Deb) and George; and her grandchildren Erin, Lyndon, Aidan and Jordan. Born in Winnipeg on April 24, 1924, Dorothy attended Cecil Rhodes School before enrolling in Success Business College to become a secretary. She worked for a Winnipeg legal firm from age 18 until she married Wilfred Finch in 1961. Following the wedding, the couple moved to Dauphin, MB, where Dorothy became a full time mother to their three children. The couple spent 32 years in Dauphin before moving to MacGregor, MB in 1993. There they took an active role in the lives of their MacGregor grandchildren, who came to regard the hours they spent at Grandma's house as some of the happiest of their young lives. First and foremost, Dorothy was a woman of faith, a faith first nurtured when her grandmother took her to church as a child. This faith was strengthened in her teens when she became a pianist at Calvary Temple in Winnipeg. A musician all her life, she applied her God-given talents at a number of Winnipeg churches - especially St. Margaret's Anglican Church, her home church during her last 12 years in the city. She was the musical accompanist for many prominent evangelists during their visits to Winnipeg, including Brian Green, Charles Templeton and Tom Rees. In 1948, Mr. Rees invited Dorothy to come to England to be the pianist for his Christian Conference Centre at Hildenborough Hall in Kent. As one who loved travel, Dorothy treasured the year she spent abroad and developed a great respect for many of the spiritual leaders of the evangelical wing of the Anglican Church of England. Dorothy was highly regarded for her musical skills, despite the fact that she never progressed beyond Grade 8 in the Royal Conservatory program. While she always regretted not pursuing her formal musical education beyond this point, her talent was further refined under the tutelage of Clarence Dahlgren, a professional music teacher in Dauphin. She was active on the music festival scene in Winnipeg, and continued this tradition in Dauphin and MacGregor, where she was eagerly sought out by vocal teachers who valued both her skills and her dedication to her craft. A perfectionist, hours of preparation would precede any public event at which she was scheduled to play. Unfailingly modest and eager to shift praise onto others, she nevertheless took quiet pride in the fact that she was routinely singled out for recognition by adjudicators. Wherever she lived, Dorothy played piano / organ at regular Sunday services as well as seasonal church events. Despite suffering from congestive heart failure for over a decade, she continued to play the organ at her church in MacGregor and perform for residents at MacGregor Personal Care Home until just weeks before her passing. She also derived great strength from her weekly Friendship Bible Coffee meetings in MacGregor. Cremation has taken place and a private family service was held March 3, 2011 in MacGregor, followed by a reception for friends and acquaintances. Clarke's Funeral Home, MacGregor in care of arrangements.

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