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Eleanor Janet Muirhead

July 17, 2019

Eleanor Janet Muirhead (nee Thomson), aged 93 passed away on Wednesday July 17, 2019.

Eleanor was a natural leader, one who never hesitated to take charge, to make tough decisions and to lead by example. A head nurse in Ottawa for more than 30 years, who loved her professional life and modeled integrity and humanity along with a good dose of humour to her mostly female colleagues, Eleanor was an early feminist, despite what she would say to the contrary!

Born in 1926 in Lowell, MA, she grew up in Bennington, VT and enjoyed an idyllic childhood before leaving to train as a nurse in NY during the Second World War. She worked briefly before her marriage to the love of her life, Colin Muirhead, in 1947. They raised four children and shared 62 years of marriage before his death in 2009. Together, they traveled the world, spending time in Florida, Italy and England, with Eleanor typically flying and Colin sailing to meet her wherever they went abroad! Eleanor loved travelling, good food and socializing with family and friends. She and Colin regularly attended local theatre in Ottawa and she served on the board of her condominium. She was an active volunteer on many fronts. Always eager to lend a hand where needed whether it was to help out with the Lung Association, Senior support or a neighbour in need.

Eleanor was devoted to her children Bruce (Sandi), Lyn Wilson (Lloyd), Ross (Susan) and Janet Zinnicker (Doug). She was likewise with her five grandchildren (although she had a special relationship with Sarah) and was delighted by her four great grandchildren. She would often comment, that she had had the perfect life.

“Because I have loved life, I shall have no sorrow to die.” –Amelia Burr Godspeed! A very big thank you to all those who cared for her at Bonnechere Manor in Renfrew during those last few years. At her request there will be no visitation or service. 

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