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In Memory of Elizabeth (Betty) Hunter

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Elizabeth (Betty) Hunter

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ The world lost a dynamic lady on July 25, 2020. Betty Hunter’s Scottish brogue has been silenced, but her legacy lives on in her three children David of Baltimore, Alison of Ottawa and Neil of Burlington, and six grandchildren: Laura of London, England; Dante, Matthew and Mackenzie of Ottawa, and Gavin and Avery of Burlington. Scotland’s loss was Canada’s gain when Betty moved to this land in 1967 with husband George, and children David and Alison. It was a very courageous move as they had no relatives in this part of the Commonwealth. With Betty’s socializing and love of people, it wasn’t long before they made life-long friends in Kingston and then Kemptville. With a move to Brockville for Dad’s career, Mom struck up friendships that have lasted almost 50 years. It was rumoured this group of girlfriends played bridge, but desserts, cups of tea and gossip definitely were involved! Betty and George also stumbled across a group of like-minded Scots in the faculty at South Grenville High School in Prescott. Known as the “British Mafia” they enjoyed many laughs together. Betty was a qualified librarian. She was responsible for setting up Kemptville Agricultural College’s library and she threw her usual enthusiasm for life into this endeavor, receiving accolades. In Brockville, Betty was the first “Sunday” librarian at the Public Library before moving into the healthcare sector: as Program Coordinator with the Lanark Leeds and Grenville Lung Association and then Executive Director with the Huron-Perth Lung Association. Many avid smokers can credit Betty with helping them “kick the habit”, including a few notables from the Stratford Festival! Her family was incredibly lucky - before leaving for work in the mornings Betty would often bake pies from scratch or her famous meringues, ensuring the family had treats for dessert every night. She also gave to the community, as a Board Member for Sherwood Park Manor, as a founding member of the Probus Club of Leeds and Grenville, and for several years arranging speakers and trips to various theatre venues in Western Ontario. The theatre was one of Betty’s loves. Her first appearance on stage was with the Brockville Operatic’s “My Fair Lady”. When she joined the Brockville Theatre Guild she became known for her comedy roles in British farces. Dressed in spinster attire, she was very funny as the drunken, inappropriate old auntie. As the youngest child of John and Jane Usher, Betty received the love and attention of her older siblings Jessie, Carrie, and Georgie. Becoming the matriarch of the family in the last decade, Betty has kept in touch with our relatives, including nephew Jim in Scotland, Patricia and Elizabeth in England, and the Ushers in Nevada, Texas and Connecticut. George and Betty were married for 49 years, taking a celebratory cruise only months before he unexpectedly left us. Missing his company terribly, Betty went on a blind date with another Scotsman a couple of years afterward, finding a sweet companion in John McCallum and his lovely family. Betty’s children will always cherish memories of summers at Belvedere Place in Brockville, and Glendon Road in Stratford. She and George took them on treasured summer vacations in Daytona Beach, Virginia Beach, Sandbanks, and of course numerous trips to Scotland. Betty also created wonderful memories with her grandchildren, babysitting them and hosting them in Florida, where she wintered for over 20 years, always game to play with them in the pool or on the beach. We will all carry with us memories of Betty’s laughter and spunk, and her deep abiding love for her family. In Betty’s memory, donations can be made to www.cysticfibrosis.ca. A public service will be held outdoors at the Old St. Peter’s Cemetery on Tuesday, August 4th, at 10 am. Please embrace social distancing and the wearing of masks. Send a message of condolence or share a special thought of Betty on the Memory Wall above, thank you.