Anastasia (Stasia) Sweeney, New Victoria-Amherst
We, the friends of Anastasia (Stasia Sweeney) of New Victoria, regret to inform you of her death at the Cumberland Regional Hospital, Amherst, from complications arising from an infection. Stasia’s happy place was New Victoria and most particularly, swimming at the shore at Girl’s Rock. Every summer day, Stasia seemingly would collect children along Daley Road as they excitedly joined her on the way to the beach. Many will tell you that Stasia taught them to swim, usually by throwing them off of Girl’s Rock. How she would laugh when, as adults, they shared those recollections.
Stasia’s church was very important to her and her soprano voice could be heard at St. Joseph’s in New Victoria and later in the Holy Family Church Choir and in Showcase Productions of Broadway musicals, in Amherst. Stasia loved to sing, to laugh, to read, to travel, to swim and she dearly loved and cared for her cats.
After graduating from St. Francis Xavier University with a Bachelor of Arts and a Bachelor of Education she began her teaching career with the Federal Department of Indigenous and Northern Affairs in Red Sucker Lake, Northern Manitoba and then in Whycocomagh, NS. Stasia remembered those teaching days fondly, remaining in touch with many of her former students and their parents. She transferred to the Regional Head Office in Amherst where she completed her 35 years of service with the government.
After her retirement, Stasia spent periods of time in her home in New Victoria where she genuinely wanted to live. Unfortunately, health and mobility issues made that not possible. She was able to remain in her home in Amherst, in large part, due to the support, friendship and kindness of her neighbour and friend, Scott McCallum. Scott enabled her to stay in her home and later supported her when in hospital and nursing home. After a prolonged hospital stay, Stasia moved to Bayview Memorial Health Centre in Advocate Harbour, located on the shores of the Bay of Fundy. The staff were friendly, attentive and caring for Stasia and actively worked to have her transferred to Sydney. The transfer was imminent.
Her lifelong friends, Keith Brown, Jane Connell and Paul Lamey of New Victoria, helped Stasia through her life transitions and supported and helped with her decisions. Oftentimes these decisions were difficult but Stasia faced them stoically with her friends. She loved to reminisce about New Victoria with them and her keen memory could recall conversations, word for word, from decades before.
Stasia was predeceased by her mother Marion Sweeney and her special Aunt, Margaret Sweeney, both of New Victoria. She is survived by many cousins. The ICU staff at the Cumberland Regional Hospital were kind and supportive during her very brief stay. Dr. James and the nursing staff were particularly attentive and kind. Thank you.
There will be no visitation. Cremation has taken place. A funeral service will be held at V.J. McGillivray Funeral Home Chapel, 380 Smith Street, New Waterford, NS, on Saturday, November 4th at 11 a.m. with Father Jim Oliver officiating. Burial will be beside her mother and Aunt Margaret at St. Joseph’s Cemetery, New Victoria with a reception to follow in the funeral home. Donations in her memory may be made to an SPCA of your choice. Online expressions of sympathy mey be sent to the family at: www.vjmcgillivray.ca.