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Edith Parker
by her niece Pam Sweeney

Edith was a mystery to me until I was in my teens, often hearing her name, but never being able to place her or put a face to her name. She was, in truth, my aunt, my father's sister.

She was the youngest of eleven children and grew up in Penatang, Canada.

Being the youngest, she was expected to stay at home and take care of the domestic chores and care for her mother when she was ill.

Her original wish was to help her father run a lumber company in Northern Canada, but again she was called home. While caring for her mother, she attended teacher's college and taught in a high school in Windsor. She never married and referred to herself as a "Maiden Lady".

She loved teaching young boys because she had been very much of a tomboy herself and was always competing with her brothers. She understood them and affectionately called them "her boys."

She was not considered a pretty woman, but a handsome woman and strong in both body and spirit.

For a number of years she would come over to the States at Thanksgiving time and share our meal with us, saying that the "States" knew how to serve a proper Thanksgiving, while Canadian Thanksgivings ran a poor second.

Aunt Edith at the piano
Aunt Edith at the piano

She often stayed with us a couple of weeks, enjoying the children and helping with homework.

Every evening at 5:00 PM she insisted on having her cocktail and insisting I have one with her. As I soon realized, this was not going to work, as I had to put on a dinner for nine and homework to be checked.

Being a teacher, she sometimes took over that job and I was indeed grateful. (Instead of a highball, I drank ginger ale, and she was none the wiser).

She was a football fan like no other, and an avid Notre Dame supporter. Upon hearing that the Notre Dame/Navy game was being played in Cleveland she begged for tickets to the game and one ticket for the parish priest where she taught school.

We all had a grand time, and Father said Mass for us at our house, and after that the partying began.

Both of these grand people have passed away, and they are sorely missed.

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