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Saturday December 22, 2012

MERRICK, Audrey Mary (nee Bantick)

Born 18 September 1911 - died 20 December 2012 in her 102nd year: predeceased in 1979 by her husband Lewis O. Merrick. She leaves a son John Bantick of Halifax, daughters Jacqueline Anne (Jury) of Peterborough and Wendy-Lew Cecille (Yolinsky) of Pennsylvania, two grandsons by John; Glen Scot and Gregory Alan both of Halifax and two great granddaughters by Glen; Samantha Jocelyn and Allison Christina. Audrey had been in very poor physical health for several years but intellectual of mind to the end. After a private ceremony, Audrey was interred in Holy Cross Cemetery, Thornhill Ontario. Audrey was born in Ealing West London, England the only child of the late Sydney Horace Bantick and his late wife the former Annie Cecilia Hynes. Audrey emigrated to Canada with her mother in 1918 to join her father who was then stationed in Niagara- on-the-Lake training Canadian troops for service overseas. Audrey was home schooled in England and Canada until her family moved to Toronto after the war, when she was enrolled in the Loretto Sisters' school, at that time located in downtown Toronto. She was an artistically talented student and also enjoyed a successful year at the Putney School of Art in London in 1928. Audrey's father became closely involved with the Association of Kinsmen Clubs in the early 1920's, and Audrey and Lewis became ardent, long-time supporters of that charitable service-oriented organization. Along with their many Bridge playing friends, Kinsmen and Kinettes were Audrey's and Lewis's social outlet. Audrey was very proud of her British heritage and culture. Family lore has one forebear on her mother's side as a Bandmaster with the British Coldstream Guards. A silver tea set commemorates the 1912 retirement of her grandfather from the London Metropolitan Police as a Superintendent. Her father was a British officer in France in WWI and a Staff Major in the Canadian Militia prior to the end of the war. Audrey will be remembered as a voracious reader who enjoyed a wide variety of material, ranging from the fictional Amelia Peabody, to U.S. presidential memoirs, and British Royal history. She also enjoyed Scrabble, Bridge and gardening. In her later-nineties, she mourned that she was outliving all her friends, but those remaining friends and newer neighbours continued to visit and call. In her last years, dear and selfless caregivers would take her out to the porch and front lawn and she would enjoy the sense of being a part of the neighbourhood, watching the cars go by and greeting a few neighbours who would drop over to say 'hi'. The family wishes to extend a sincere thank you to Dr. Anne Pyper whose attentiveness and compassionate interest ensured that Audrey was able to live her last days in her own home in personal comfort. In addition, two extraordinarily sensitive and dedicated caregivers contributed immeasurably to that level of comfort and final well-being, significantly easing her passing. Funeral arrangements were made through R. S. Kane, 6150 Yonge Street, Toronto. Donations in Audrey's memory can be sent to the Kinsmen Clubs Canada National Office, 1920 Rogers Drive, Box 3460 Cambridge, ON N3H 5C6, or The Donkey Sanctuary of Canada, 6981 Puslinch Concession 4 R.R. #6 Guelph, ON N1H 6J3, or a charity of choice. R.S. Kane

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