LOIS SMITH BRENNAN - passed away July 19, 2019. Born Lois Joan McClelland May 14, 1919 in Maidenhead, Berkshire, West Sussex, England. Parents: Samuel James McClelland & Charlotte Ann Pym, Brother Ronnie. Lois died two months after her one hundredth birthday.
A lively and generous woman, Lois served her church, her province and her community with energy, and selfless devotion.
Lois arrived in Canada with her family in 1920 and lived in Ottawa and Pembroke. She received her high school education in the U.K. Lois drove for the Red Cross in WW II. She moved to Lindsay in 1947. A proud Canadian who loved the beautiful wilderness and Canada’s important aboriginal heritage, Lois became a citizen in 1970. Predeceased by husbands Hugh Smith (Married 1940, d.1984) and Kenneth Brennan (married 1998, d.2004). Lois had a rewarding twenty five year career with the Ministry of the Attorney General assigning Crown Attorneys.
Lois’ adventures included painting en plein air on six continents while engaged in freelance writing and photography along the way. She painted in Greece and Iceland, explored South America. Lois also painted in the American southwest, on Canada’s west coast, and in Africa and France. Lois won an Air Canada En Route best photo award for a picture of a toreador with el Toro. Her adventures included rides on elephants and camels.
Through nine decades of devoted service to the Anglican Church as a lay reader, preacher, and Sunday School teacher, Lois was active across the Kawartha Lakes, especially in Fenelon Falls, Bobcaygeon and Lindsay. An Associate of the Sisters of St. John the Divine since 1985, Lois was a Member of the Order of St. Luke from 2005. She was honoured with membership in The Order of the Diocese of Toronto at St. James Cathedral New Year’s Day 2016. Lois made her Cursillo – a Christian retreat – at the table of St. Elizabeth in Peterborough and later sponsored five others. She also served as a member of the First Nations Truth and Reconciliation Committee from 2007.
Intellectually curious but modest about her talents and achievements, Lois was a compassionate and patient instructor always ready to share her skills. She studied at the Doon School of Fine Art and in the U.S. and Europe. She painted in all media, appeared in many shows, and hangs in many private collections here and abroad. She was a founder of the Lindsay Art Gallery in 1970 and was a member of the Peterborough Gallery. Her book Every Picture Tells a Story offers a selection of her paintings. Lois studied English at the University of Toronto, and at Trent University in Peterborough. She earned her Fine Arts Diploma at Fleming College. Her book of poetry is called A Poet’s Passion. Lois was also a target shooter with many awards for her skill with a rifle.
Lois lived a rich and adventurous life. She and a friend were even thrown into a South American jail once. Lois got them out by calling a cab driver who brought a bottle of whiskey for the guards. Lois was always ready to hike in the desert or to curl or golf or to lend a hand, to sing in a choir, to teach Sunday school or to write a limerick. She volunteered in many ways including support and personal warmth in a palliative care setting. Lois acknowledged that life had inflicted some wounds and disappointments but she never dwelt on that. She charged her batteries with new adventures. Her many admiring friends will remember her enthusiasms and especially her caring and compassion. Lois was forgiving of slights and generous to all.
All of us fortunate enough to have been touched by her spirit and her unstinting open friendship have been enriched and blessed. Lois, we are better for knowing you.
Heartfelt thanks to the caring staff at the Princess Gardens in Peterborough.
A memorial service will be held at St. Paul’s Anglican Church, 45 Russell Street West, Lindsay September 25, 2019 at 2:00 p.m.
In lieu of flowers donate to the charity of your choice would be appreciated. Donations and condolences may be made through Mackey Funeral Home, 33 Peel Street, Lindsay or online at www.mackeys.ca.
A private interment will take place at a later date.