A very special Mom, Grandma and Great Grandma, Rita, passed away on January 16th, 2018 at Cumberland Lodge, just four weeks short of her 99th Birthday.
Born in Comox B.C., she spent 93 years on Headquarters Rd. in Courtenay until moving to Cumberland Lodge six years ago. As a young adult Rita worked bookkeeping for Fredrick Field Agency in Courtenay.
In 1938 she married William (Bill) Franklin and started her very busy life on the farm. They shared sixty- one years together on the farm located on the corner of Carwithen and Headquarters Roads. She always had a warm welcoming smile for any visitor and they would be treated to a choice of various home baked goods which were never in short supply.
Rita was a proficient gardener and excelled at her hobbies of knitting and crocheting. Everyone had a supply of her hand knit slippers to wear. In addition to her busy life of hand milking cows and growing and preserving fruits and vegetables, she found time to canvas for the March of Dimes.
At the age of 95, through the efforts of the Cumberland Lodge art program it was discovered that Rita also had a great talent for painting. She enjoyed this immensely. Her last painting being completed two weeks prior to her passing. Rita’s grandchildren had the opportunity to see “how things used to be done by hand.” They churned cream into butter in a glass jar with wooden paddles and witnessed the production of wonderful meals all accomplished on the old wood stove. She was not about to change to an electric stove. Another fond memory for the grandchildren was the importance of family gatherings for birthdays, holidays and Sunday visits.
Rita was predeceased by her parents Edward and Gwendolyn Every-Clayton, Spouse William (Bill) Franklin (1999), Daughter Christine Toutant (2001), Son-In-Law Robert Toutant (1991) and Brother Herbert (1981).
Lovingly remembered by Son Dan (Fran) of Courtenay, B.C. Grandchildren: Michelle Toutant (Ron) Fort Macleod AB, Jacqueline Toutant (Yvon) St. Hubert QC, Paul Toutant (Andrea) Chestermere AB, Rod Franklin (Daphne) Fraser Valley, B.C. Cindy Reynolds (Greg) Nanaimo, B.C. Great Grandchildren: Maryse, Patrick, Julianna; Atticus, Elijah; Blake, Mackenzie; Daniel, Natalie and Makenna.
Many thanks to all the staff of Cumberland Lodge for their compassionate care of “Miss Rita.”
A Tea of Remembrance will be held as per Rita’s wishes at Comox Valley Funeral Home, Cremation and Reception Centre in their “Garden Room” on Thursday, January 25th, 2018 from 11am – 1 pm.
Please come and share your stories and memories of this lovely lady.
In lieu of flowers, if you wish, donations can be made to: YANA Courtenay, B.C. or to the Recreation Therapy Program at Cumberland Lodge.