HEALY, Paul Spencer – age 69, of Elmsdale, passed away peacefully in the arms of his loving family on 22 December, 2021 at the Victoria General Hospital, Halifax from complications due to kidney cancer.
Born in Halifax on 8 August, 1952, Paul was the son of the late Dr. Robert and Gwenlyn (Fraser) Healy. Although born in Halifax, he was raised in Kentville and proudly considered himself a “Valley Boy”. It was there that he developed a life-long passion for horse- back riding and music, receiving his first Gibson guitar as a teenager. He continued his love of music and theatre while studying at Acadia, York, and Mount Saint Vincent Universities. It was at the Mount that he received the President’s Award in recognition for his skill and dedication with university theatre productions.
Paul taught English for many years, first in Hebbville and then in Timberlea. He always encouraged his students to read, read, read and was a true role model for this. He loved to read and was rarely seen without a book in his hand. He did the crosswords, sudokus, and tic-tac logic puzzles in the local newspaper without fail, and it was not uncommon for Paul and his wife Martha to buy identical puzzle books to see who could complete them first. Needless to say, Paul always won.
Paul’s true joy was his family. He loved his children beyond belief. They will always treasure their time with him learning about the constellations, the many drives to sports practices, school events, cadets, and counting deer. Paul loved to take long, wonderful drives in the country - to go anywhere along the country roads and counting deer was always an ideal way to spend an afternoon. He treasured his visits with siblings Bob, Stephen, Elizabeth and their fam- ilies, with his cousins and extended families. Paul was our beloved Stampy to Jack and Lily, and was thrilled to have Ryan and Andrea become part of the Healy clan.
There was always laughter when you were with Paul - his humour was quick, quiet, and dry, and he would often come up with the most unexpected reply to a comment that would then result in the room breaking out in laughter. His intelligence and compassion always shone, and he was one of the few people with whom you could sit and simply “be”. Silences were never awkward when you were with Paul.
When Paul was a very young boy, he developed polio before the polio vaccine was available. This illness left him with what some would call a handicap, but Paul never let this slow him down. He rode horses, curled, played baseball, hockey, golf, basketball, and whatever else he put his hand to. This determination to live life on his own terms served him well when he received a kidney cancer diagnosis in April, 2015. For the next 6 and 1/2 years, he never complained, never felt sorry for himself. His specialist found a line of treatment that allowed his disease to remain stable until several months ago. His sense of humour, his stoicism, and his grace were a beacon for us to follow on this most unfair journey. His love was all-encompassing, and his compassion and sensitivity to others were always present.
Our beloved Paul will be forever missed by his wife, Martha (Nicholson); children, Adam (Mandy), Tris, Danielle (Paul), Kathleen, Alexander (Sabra), and Maggie. He is lovingly remembered by his grandchildren Jack, Lily, Ryan, and Andrea. Paul is also survived by siblings Robert “Bob” (Anna), Stephen (Patti), and Elizabeth (Peter) Clarke, former wife Lynne (Hemming) Healy, numerous cousins, nieces and nephews.
The family would like to acknowledge the wonderful care Paul received from the the nursing staff on 6A. They were simply amazing and we can never thank you enough for all you did. To the Rev. Kim Curlett, to Theresa Zukauskas who provided sanctuary and suc- cour to our family at the hospital - thank you. To all those who helped with Roy and Poppy, who provided food, who sat with us in the cafeteria, who were always at the receiving end of a phone call or text to share our joys and our sorrows - thank you. Your loving kindnesses will be forever remembered.
Visitation will be held 7-9 PM Friday, May 13, 2022 in Ettinger Funeral Home, Shubenacadie. (Masks strongly recommended) A Celebration of Paul’s life will be held 2 PM Saturday, May 14, 2022, in Riverview United Church, Elmsdale (masks required). Rev. Kim Curlett officiating. ). This will be followed by a reception then interment in Sandy Hill Cemetery, Belnan.
In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made to Riverview United Church, Nova Scotia Kiwanis Music Festival, Helen Creighton Folklore Society, or a charity of one’s choice.
Tributes, words of comfort and memories of Paul may be shared with the family at: www.ettingerfuneralhome.com