Tod – Edna Gail
Passed away on Tuesday, October 8, 2019 from metastatic breast cancer, having quite recently celebrated her 70th birthday at an animated open-air cocktail and shared plates party with her husband, four children, and other beloved family and friends.
Gail was born on August 25th, 1949 in Edmonton, Alberta to parents James and Margaret (Nell) Tod (née Proudfoot). Gail liked to remember that when she was very young, the milk was still delivered on cold Edmonton mornings by a heavy-horse drawn cart, and in those days, little girls could be sent to the corner store to pick up groceries for dinner without all the fuss we see these days.
Gail graduated from Western University in London Ontario with a degree in English literature. She began a master’s degree in Political Science, but discovered little interest in her assigned subject and, despite her supervisor’s pleadings for ”just 20 pages,” she decided, with nary a regret, to pursue other callings. One of the most enduring of these callings, throughout her life, was working with horses. An accomplished rider from her teen years, Gail’s passion for horses was abiding—for her sixtieth birthday, she even got a tattoo of a horse on her forearm. Gail worked in the Equine Program at Kemptville College (as one of her many diverse career ventures) as well as teaching children in her community (including all of her own) how to ride, exhorting “Thumbs up! Heels down! And look where you want to go!”
An Alberta girl, Gail met her husband Jim, an East-Coaster from Nova Scotia, in the middle—in Ottawa, at a party on a charmed night when he opened the door. They married four years later, clandestinely (and without alerting her parents) on the morning of May 20, 1976, and then went back to work in the afternoon. Gail always thought it was terribly romantic. Gail and Jim went on to travel widely, living abroad in Thailand and the Philippines.
Gail ‘graduated’ (not ‘retired!’) this past February from OC Transpo, where she worked for the past 13 years as a bus driver and booking agent. She was an avid reader, talented cook, companionable traveller, and genuinely self-sacrificing friend, listener, wife, and mother. In her last days she reminded her family that she “always just wanted all of her children to be friends.” She can rest assured that she and Jim have together successfully raised a grateful and devoted rapscallion crew who are well aware of how blessed they have been to have had her and, by extension, each other.
Gail was preceded in death by her parents James and Nell and brother Glenn. She is survived by her husband James (Jim) Carruthers, her children Bryan, Robyn, Mark, and Philip, and her grandchildren Lucan, Ethan, and Troy, in addition to other much-loved family and friends—and Tilo Doggie.
Friends may attend a visitation at the Kars Chapel of Tubman Funeral Homes, 1610 Roger Stevens Dr., Kars on Friday, October 11th from 5 to 8 p.m. Memorial service will be held at Holy Trinity Anglican Church, North Gower on Saturday, October 12th at 11 a.m. followed by a reception. Those wishing may make memorial donations to Holy Trinity Anglican Church. Tributes, condolences or donations may be made through www.tubmanfuneralhomes.com.
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Holy Trinity Anglican Church, North Gower
2372 Church St., P.O. Box 29, North Gower ON K0A2T0