We all have a story to share, of special days and people that live on in our memories.
Our heartfelt thanks to those who have chosen to Pay for a Day (or week) of care for a resident.
We encourage you to read these beautiful stories.
Every Day Counts
“Dorothy Ryde was born on January 7, 1930 - so today would have been her 92nd birthday.
Mom was the family leader, lover of flowers and proper tea, creator of delicious pies, avid card player, collector of antique china cream jugs, good sport, lover of a good party, bulbar polio survivor (and thriver), and an indomitable spirit.
The nurses and care team were wonderful and attentively and respectfully helped her pass and us to say goodbye.
I became involved with Rotary Hospice believing that if it had been already open, Mom would have loved the homelike comfort, and it would have allowed me more time to be her “daughter” rather than a “caregiver”. We support our hospice for other Moms and their daughters.
Our heartfelt thanks to Sue and Al Wakelin who chose to Pay for a Day of Care in Dorothy's memory”.
“Pauline was a dear friend. Our families camped and travelled together, enjoying tropical vacations. On this day, we are donating a gift of $1000 to Every Day Counts. Cheers my friend. May we meet again, on a beach, under the palm trees with a Pina Colada in a coconut. Love you and miss you.”
Today marks two years since George Yates passed away at Rotary Hospice.
"George spent many nights in the Hospice and we are thankful that his last weeks were in your care."
Dawn Cooper Spencer
“This is the birthdate of my mom, who passed away in 2008. Plus, it's also Robbie Burns Day! This photo of her at age 15, as 1953 Miss Sophiasburg, Prince Edward County, always makes me smile.”
- Lana Burchett
Basil Edward Hurst
Remembering Basil Edward Hurst,
May 9, 1937 - Oct 23, 2021
"Basil was born in London England prior to the 2ndWW and as a child in the midst of it had many memories and stories to share when he moved to Canada in 1968.
Although he trained as an Industrial Engineer and travelled to such countries as Japan, Brazil, and United States doing Kaizen training for Standard Products, Basil was truly a Renaissance man. His love of music led him to sing as a strong tenor voice in many choirs, from his youth in the cathedrals of England, to the Stratford Concert Choir, St. James’ Church choir, Drayton Entertainment’s Gilbert and Sullivan fundraiser, and the Sing for the Joy of It local choir.
For many years he was a bee-keeper with sales of honey at locations in Bayfield and the shores of Lake Huron.
His love of gardening would take him to explore local nurseries each spring for new plant discoveries. Bird-watching was a favourite activity whether from his own backyard or roadside travels and a natural curiosity of insects produced numerous collections in his house.
From his early days in England to his retirement years in Stratford, landscape painting was his delight and thus an involvement with Art in the Park each summer.
For 20 years Basil enthusiastically volunteered at the Stratford Festival in its many duties, always greeting patrons with a welcoming smile and comment.
Because he wanted (in his words) to give back to his beloved community, Basil joined the Rotary Club of Stratford in November 2003, and was a recipient of Rotary’s highest honour as a Paul Harris Fellow. Of particular interest to Basil was the development and sponsorship of Rotary in the Hospice and thus this donation, from his beloved companion Laura Pogson, is made in his memory. We shall all miss his sunshine personality."
Mother and Grandmother
It is our mom and grandma's birthday. We wish this hospice option would have been available for her when she was sick.
Charalampos (Larry) Sideris
Today is the feast day of Saint Charalampos.
To honour the memory of Charalampos (Larry) Sideris and to celebrate his Name Day - a special time for his loved ones - his family chose to pay for a day of care for one resident room as a loving tribute.
Mitchell Family Doctors
“In recognition of our tremendous team, we at Mitchell Family Doctors made a contribution to the Every Day Counts campaign for Rotary Hospice. Family is one of the essential resources for an individual’s health journey, and so we are thrilled to have Family Day 2021 as our designated day.”
"My father, Don Arntfield, would have turned 97 on February 25th. He was a remarkable man: smart, curious, kind, a maker or fixer of anything, a talented musician, an eternal optimist, and recently an exceptional caregiver for my mother as her dementia progressed.
Dad died at his home just before Christmas after a 10-day illness during which he was cared for by a loving team of family members. Dad knew that not everyone wanted to or was able to die at home. Partly because of my volunteer work at Rotary Hospice, Dad was aware of hospice as a valuable community resource. Paying for a day of care speaks to Dad’s – and my – belief that how you live and how you die are important."
Gone too soon but a beautiful life that was a special gift to so many, Sophie's family has chosen to give thanks for the treasure that the hospice is in our community on what would have been her 13th birthday.
Harold McCann. Husband, father and businessman.
"March 15th is the anniversary of our father’s birthday. Harold McCann, husband to Mary and father to Jean, Barbara and Jerome, was born in Ellice Township as the fifth child in a large family that had seven boys and four girls. In January of 1972 our father was diagnosed with leukemia. Following diagnosis he valiantly fought to lead a normal life but eventually passed away in late November of 1972. 2022 will therefore mark the 50th anniversary of his death.
At a relatively young age our father and mother started their own family business, Harold T. McCann Construction Limited. They worked hard to establish and develop this business. Our father managed the day to day operations and our mother worked in the office taking orders and doing all of the necessary bookkeeping. Their construction business was involved in aggregate (ie: sand and gravel) sales as well as truck, float, crawler dozer and rubber tired loader rentals.
In the latter years of business our father was very fortunate to work with three key employees: Arnold Balfour (known to many as “Muff” since in his early employment days with MTO he complained just once too often about a particular truck with a loud Muffler), Gord Elgie and Ron Stewart. With their dedication and commitment, especially in the last year of our father’s life, we now consider Muff, Gord and Ron to be our extended-family members.
In that last year, when our father was quite ill, they played an important role in the completion of five major projects: site preparation work for the Walter Tkaczuk Hockey School; site preparation work for construction of the Stratford Fairgrounds Community Centre; St. Marys site preparation work for Dresden Industries factory addition; demolition with site preparation work for the 1972 addition to Stratford Central Secondary School; and installation of roads in the rear section of Stratford’s Avondale Cemetery.
Our father never really had time for hobbies or sports. He did however enjoy watching the Toronto Maple Leafs so Wednesday’s and Saturday’s were always “Hockey Night in Canada” evenings in our home. It’s hard to believe that our father witnessed the most recent, and last time, the Leafs won the Stanley Cup in 1967. Although he was quite ill at the time he also got to see and cheer on Team Canada in their win over Russia in the 1972 Summit Hockey Series. With this win over the Russians we like to think that Dad got to see what is arguably the best hockey ever played. Our father once commented that with all of the area construction projects that he worked on he didn’t need to be remembered with a cemetery monument. Well Dad we did purchase for you a cemetery stone but that hasn’t stopped us from remembering you when we see the many construction projects that you worked on in Stratford and vicinity."
Harold McCann lovingly remembered by your children Jean, Barbara, Jerome and their families.
"On June 4, 2021, Norbert and I would have been married
Norm was not only the love of my life and my best friend, but also in many ways my mentor who taught me to be strong and self-reliant.
I will forever miss his laughter, his great sense of humour and his love for music...two weeks before he suddenly died on April 23, 2020, he stood at the window and sang along: "Whatever will be, will be...!"
Norm, I thank you for 60 wonderful years together, and may you be surrounded with music. With love, Christa."
Bill and Donna Quipp's 51st Wedding Anniversary
Today marks Bill and Donna Quipp's 51st wedding anniversary! In honour of this milestone celebration, they chose to make a gift to the Every Day Counts Campaign to Pay for a Day of Care. Our heartfelt thanks to Bill and Donna for recognizing their special day with a gift to Rotary Hospice!
"I dedicate May 13 to the memory of a dear family friend, Bill Christian who died suddenly only 11 days after my beloved husband, Norbert, passed away.
My family and I became friends with Bill soon after he arrived in Canada from Germany. Bill and my stepdad, Emil Worm, came from the same area and we, with other newly arrived German families, spent many happy hours together. We took trips to Niagara Falls stopping along the roadside buying and eating freshly picked peaches. (Whoever thought of pesticides then!).
We spent many summer weekends at Ipperwash Beach, walking along the dunes, looking for adventure, but all I found and stepped on was Poison Ivy! On another weekend, Bill almost drowned way out in the lake due to a cramp in his leg and my stepdad quickly swam out to him and brought him back to shore safely. And, on December 1, 1957, the unthinkable happened; my dad was killed in a car-train collision near Cornwall, ON. Bill and another dear friend drove to the area to identify his body and bring my dad home.
Years passed, Bill got married and raised a family. He became a very successful businessman who started singlehandedly, and later with the help of his wife, Karin, and his son, Dan, his own manufacturing company: Chrima Metal Fabrication on Douro Street, Stratford, which employs approximately 100 people.
Bill had a passion for flying and owned his own planes. And he also had a great sense of humour and loved telling jokes. Wherever he and Karin travelled during their retirement, on my birthday, January 3, Bill would call and wish both of us (Norbert's was January 10) a happy birthday. Every call would end with him telling us a joke.
Willi, whenever I spend some time at the cemetery, I always stop by at your resting place and hope that wherever you are now travelling in one of your dream machines, that you will always have two co-pilots with you: your friend Emil (my stepdad) and my best friend, Norbert.
HAPPY BIRTHDAY, WILLI! You will never be forgotten. Your friend, Christel."
Harold and Mary McCann
This gift is in memory of our parents, Harold and Mary McCann on what was our mother’s birthday. From their children, Jean, Barbara, and Jerome, and their grandchildren and great-grandchildren.
Our most heartfelt thanks to the anonymous donors who chose to Pay for a Day of Care
- for all eight resident rooms today -
in loving memory of family who have passed.
"My husband, John Mavity was only 57 when he passed away from work-related cancer. He was a firefighter in Stratford for over 27 years.
Family meant everything to him. His grandchildren were the light of his life.
He was a kind man and could light up a room with his smile and could tell a joke like no other. He excelled at any sport he played and was a good friend to many. He passed before Rotary Hospice became a reality, but I know he would have supported it wholeheartedly.
To honour him by supporting “Pay for a Day”, on what would have been his 67th birthday, is my privilege."
- Laurie Brown Mavity
"May 29, 2022, will mark 50 years since my dad, Gordon Hansford, passed away in palliative care. My dad’s lengthy battle with illness had a profound impact on my family's life, and we recognize the important role that hospice care plays in supporting individuals and families.
My mom, Ruth, provided in-home hospice care through her work as a VON nurse. End-of-life care was incredibly important to her, and this is something she often spoke about in her later years.
My parents would have been so appreciative of the care and support provided by Rotary Hospice Stratford to members of their community. Their legacy lives on through their children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren."
- Lynn McKone
We thank the anonymous donor who chose to mark their birthday by Paying for a Day of Care in memory of Shirley, the youngest sister of a dear friend.
Our most heartfelt thanks to the anonymous donor who chose to mark her birthday by
Paying for a Day of Care in memory of Shirley,
the youngest sister of a dear friend.
"This day of care is dedicated to my Mom, Verna Herold, who 60 years ago today gave birth to me, Janet, her youngest of seven children.
On October 4, 2021, my mom passed away at Rotary Hospice.
Today is my first birthday without her.
We had a birthday tradition of Mom making me her special homemade tomato soup and, instead of cake, she would make lemon pie for dessert for my birthday lunch. So, so good.
Myself & the rest of the gang appreciate the excellent care given to Mom. Thank you for all that you do."
Today marks the 3rd anniversary of the passing of Charalampos (Larry) Sideris. In his memory, a donation was made to Pay for a Day of Care for one of our resident rooms. This generous gift will help continue our work in offering quality palliative care.
Irma (Huffman) Young
"Today we honour our mother, Irma (Huffman) Young on what would have been her 100th birthday. She was a wife, mother, grandmother, great-grandmother and great-great grandmother. It seems that some women are just meant to fill those difficult roles with grace, skill, dedication and great love.
Her life began in Moncrief, Ontario June 25,1921. She married the love of her life Leonard, and went on to raise 9 children. When Dad went to war she "kept the home fires burning" until his return in 1946. There is a plaque that we placed on a wall on Juno Beach that recognizes her efforts. Irma was always a dedicated volunteer in various capacities in our area. She taught us all very early, that you need to contribute to the community in which you live. That has stuck with many of us and we carry on that tradition today. Mom left us too soon and she is sorely missed by her family and friends.
- The Kids, XO"
"One year ago, our Dad and Poppa, Bob Gulliford, was fortunate enough to spend 5 days in the beautiful Rotary Hospice. As soon as we entered the doors we were greeted by such warm and caring staff. We instantly felt like we could finally breathe again. No longer did we have to worry about his care. He was pampered by such a wonderful group of people. They truly care about each person and treat them with such respect.
We are so lucky to have such a wonderful hospice in Stratford.
Thank you to all the staff.
Dad loved to volunteer and fundraise. This place was dear to his heart! "
Our heartfelt thanks to Barb, Keith, Kyle, Shelby, and Brandon who chose to Pay for Five Days of hospice care in memory of Dad and Poppa, Bob Gulliford.
"Today would have been Helen Anderson’s 90th birthday. Today we celebrate the life of a loving mother, grandmother, and great-grandmother (GG) who was a stalwart of her church and the many community organizations that she supported throughout her life.
Helen was very interested in the progress of the Rotary Hospice project and supported it through Rotary fund-raising efforts.
When Mom passed in August 2020 her celebration of life was limited in capacity by the pandemic. We appreciate the opportunity to sponsor a day of care at Rotary Hospice in her memory, knowing that she is remembered fondly by many who were lucky enough to know her.
We miss her every day."
- Brian and Wendy Anderson, and family
"Our Dad was a devoted Detroit Tigers fan all his life. He went to Tiger stadium in Detroit numerous times over the years and shared this passion with with family and friends.
He also enjoyed reading the London Free Press on their porch and benches in town.
Forever in our hearts."
Our heartfelt thanks to the family of Linc Rohfritsch who chose to Pay for a Day of Care in his memory.
"This period is a time for nostalgia and reminiscing. Angus felt so pleased and relieved to be able to be admitted to Rotary Hospice on August 16th. And I was relieved to be able to be a wife, not a nurse. My dear husband died on August 21st, 2020.
My mind takes me back to happy times; drives in the countryside, finding a 'local' restaurant to dine, vacations in in Florida and visits with our daughters in Texas and Indiana.
Objects make me remember my generous husband; a piece of jewellery, an item of clothing, or a book on the history of quilting given by him. I love to sew. So many reminders.
The memory of him lives on."
Bert and Audrey Vorstenbosch
In honour of their 60th Anniversary, Bert and Audrey Vorstenbosch asked their friends and family to make a donation to Rotary Hospice in lieu of gifts.
Thanks to their generosity, these donations will pay for a day of care for three resident rooms on August 17th - Audrey's birthday!
Congratulations Bert and Audrey on your 60th anniversary,
and a very happy birthday today, Audrey! We are grateful to you, your friends, and family for the generous support.
Today would have been John Newman’s 95th birthday. Our final weeks with him were spent at Rotary Hospice until his passing on Dec 5, 2021, and we are pleased to be able to honour John, the truly wonderful staff, volunteers, and this facility by sponsoring a day of care in his memory.
John is remembered as a loving father, Grandpa, & great-Grandpa (GGpa). He made friends easily and kept them close over the years. During his life he was a musician, athlete, lifeguard, engineer, community volunteer, a carer for his parents and his wife, and our family’s go to fix-it guy. Solving problems and building a solution was what gave him almost as much joy as watching his grand and great grandkids grow.
While we miss him every day, the family will be forever grateful for the care and support John and all of us received from Rotary Hospice.
Our most heartfelt thanks to the anonymous donors who chose to Pay for a Day of Care today
in loving memory of loved ones.
Their compassion ensures quality hospice palliative care for those who call Rotary Hospice home.
"On September 17th, 2013, my mom Jackie passed away. My hope was that she could do so in a hospice however Rotary Hospice was just a vision then. I knew for sure that my grief needed to be turned into gratitude to help make this a reality.
Recently, a good friend experienced what I did eight years ago and her family wanted her mom to spend her final days at Rotary Hospice. I burst into tears when she messaged me to say her mom was on her way to the hospice, as she could now be her daughter instead of her caregiver. For me, it felt like my journey with my mom had come full circle. Her mom passed away the next day with the respect, comfort and dignity that everyone and their family deserves in their final days. What an amazing gift.
My mom was “good fun”. She loved everyone, loved to laugh, loved to make people happy, was a fabulous baker and made everyday count. One of the final things she said was “remember me and smile.”
I am so grateful for her and the memories I have. I smile a lot."
Our heartfelt thanks to long-time Rotary Hospice supporter Julie Docker-Johnson who chose to Pay for a Day of Care for one resident room today in memory of her mother.
"After being involved with palliative care for decades, the Rotary Hospice was a natural next step for her volunteer time. She can’t get over the beautiful environment and incredibly caring staff that make this the type of facility she always dreamt Stratford should have. Happy Birthday Mom/Grandma and here’s to many more!" - Jeff, Rick, Nancy, Sue, Jane, Greg, Mel, Nicole, Sydney, Kaylee, Sammie and Spencer.
Our heartfelt thanks to the Orr Family who chose to Pay for a Day of Care for all eight resident rooms in honour of Connie's 80th Birthday!
"On October 10th, 2011, my husband Dave left us suddenly after suffering a massive coronary. Only three days prior to his passing, we celebrated our 39th wedding anniversary.
Dave was not only my husband and best friend, he was a wonderful father and grandfather who enjoyed spending time with the grandchildren. He had a great sense of humour, enjoyed watching sports, had a love for music and enjoyed woodworking and travelling to visit family and loved ones.
Ten years have passed, but I think of him every day and cherish all the wonderful memories he left us with.
if I hadn’t decided to volunteer at Hospice I would never have known what a wonderful facility it is! I look forward to my weekly shifts at the reception desk and it's an honour to make this gift in Dave's memory."
Our heartfelt thanks to Janet Shail who chose to Pay for a Day of Care for a resident room in memory of her husband, Dave.
In loving memory of Mimi on her birthday.
Wife, mother, grandmother and long time hospice palliative care advocate. Remembered with love. In the words of their twin grand-daughters, “Mimi lives on in our hearts.”
- Geoff Love and family
“When Hazel and I immigrated to Canada in late 1957 we arrived after three hectic weeks prior to embarking on the Empress of Canada, smallest of the old Canadian Pacific Liners. Hazel was not aware until much later that she had mislaid “Wind in the Willows” her favourite childhood book. So it was with pure joy that a visit to a local book store in 2004 produced a 1980 reprint with superb coloured illustrations of all the little animals.
"Full circle, I returned after a brief absence to Room 10 at the Hospice to find a thoughtful friend reading to her about Mr. Toad of Toad Hall, The Rat , Mr. Badger and the various other little critters on a sunny October afternoon a few days before Hazel left us. Thank you Pat. After Hazel bought the book we put it on our coffee table till she got sick. It is there again, a treasure and a precious memory of our happy times together.”
Our heartfelt thanks to Geoff Redshaw who chose to Pay for a Day of Care in memory of his beloved wife Hazel who passed away at Rotary Hospice on October 13, 2019.
In loving memory of Hazel.
“Hazel left this life on a sunny Sunday afternoon at the Hospice, on October 13, 2019.”
- The Redshaw Family
This day is dedicated in memory of my wife, Pauline Schwartzentruber, who passed November 26, 2019.
The decision for Pauline to move into Rotary Hospice was a very difficult one. Yet we knew we could no longer properly care for her by ourselves at home.
The care my wife received at the Hospice was amazing. I am and will be forever grateful to the hospice, and especially staff, for the care and support provided in her final days; care and support I would not have been able to provide Pauline at home.
Rotary Hospice allowed us to just be family, and to make every day count. It is my wish that with this donation, other families can benefit from the same care and compassion as ours did.
- Grant Schwartzentruber
“This day is dedicated in memory of our mom/wife, Pauline Schwartzentruber. She received the most amazing care at the hospice in her final days and we are forever grateful to your organization and staff for providing the care and support that we just couldn’t possibly have given her at home.”
In loving memory of Ludwiga on her 84th birthday.
“Today would have been my wife’s 84th birthday. She passed away on February 11, 2011. She received excellent care at the hospital but we needed a hospice in town.”
- John Fuhry
"Today would have been my wife's 85th birthday.
She passed away on February 11, 2011.
She received excellent care at the hospital but we needed a hospice in town. A mattress on the floor for her husband and children is not the same as
In loving memory of Elizabeth Iclanzan on her birthday.
“A beautiful soul, Elizabeth Iclanzan was born on December 2nd. An amazing wife to Alex for 51 years and an incredible mom to her three daughters.”
- The Iclanzan Family
In loving memory of husband, father, and Grumpa
“December 6th was my husband Paul's birthday. He passed away before the hospice opened however my family and I are so happy it is here for others. We are proud to support Rotary Hospice in loving memory of Paul.”
- Liz Emeny and family
"In loving memory of my sister Nancy MacDonald who passed away nine years ago on December19th.
We recognize that end of life care is a challenging time for loved ones and their families. We were able to manage Nancy's care at home with our family doctor's guidance, community nurses and support from each other, but wish hospice care was a local option in 2012.
Rotary Hospice is near and dear to our hearts and we feel it is a fitting way to honour Nancy's memory".
"I like to remember my sister Christina in all her healthy, happy years.
The many visits to each other's family homes, letters and emails written to each other and lively catch up calls are all happy memories for me.
Wishing you peace as you rest in God's hands now.
May this bring comfort to your sons, Thomas, John and Families.
Your brother John Fuhry in Canada."
Reese Family & Friends
In Honour of Family and Friends of Norma and Mike Reese
“The holiday season is a time of family memories - making new ones and recalling Christmases with folks who are no longer with us. Our family like many others has stories of dear ones whose last days could have been richer had they been able to live them out in a place like Rotary Hospice.
So on this Christmas Day, in honour of our family and friends as we continue to make memories together, we offer the gift of compassionate and quality end of life care. Our love and best wishes for a joyous Christmas and all the best in 2021.".