On February 9, 2022, Lann, Tracey and Dawn lost their mother. Her passing at 89 years should not have been a surprise, but we are in shock because we were so immersed in her loving presence we believed in her immortality. Marilyn Anne Smyth (nee Morin) … known as Marnie to dad and friends, and Marlene to her beloved sister Lynn, passed away suddenly but peacefully and without pain, with her daughter Dawn by her side.
Marnie was born to Marilda and Maurice, November 12, 1932, in a small home in Cornwall, Ontario. We loved to listen to mom and aunt Lynn when they were together as they laughed, played cards and spent happy times remembering and telling tales of growing up in their loving, part English, part French home.
Marnie met Dick when they were both working at the Cornwall radio station, she as the record librarian and he an aspiring reporter. Their resulting union was a love story that lasted almost 66 years when on March 6, 2021, dad pre-deceased her.
Dick’s broadcast career took them to Oshawa, Hamilton, and Windsor, where Lann and Tracey were born, then to Toronto where Dawn was enthusiastically welcomed. Their partnership was one of contrasts; Marnie is remembered in the radio social circle as the quiet strength and ‘tiller’ guiding the creative force that was Dick.
Marnie created a home her daughter’s friends loved to visit. She was the mom everyone wanted to be around. We were so proud to have such a ‘hip’ mom and quite a few pieces of her fabulous wardrobe could always be found in our closets. To the end, we rarely saw her wear the same fashionable ensemble twice!
When Marnie became a proud grandmother, she treasured her two grandchildren, Hannah, and Mira. She loved babies and was an incredible nanny to her grand babies as they grew into teenagers and then to young adults.
Mom had a passion for the creative. She would cook wonderful meals for family and truly spectacular presentations for the parties she and Dick loved to host. She practiced almost every handicraft, sewing, embroidery, knitting, woodworking, latch hooking and quilting. As teenagers we fondly remember coming home one day where everything was modge-podged including the bathroom faucet! Even as her arthritic hands denied her the ability to practice these skills, she took up loom knitting and continued to amaze us with her creations. To this day, Marnie is responsible for inspiring the same artistic passion in all her daughters.
Mom was known for her lively, competitive spirit. She loved playing cards, horseshoes, cribbage, gambling, golfing, bowling, and going to the casino, usually coming out on top as the champ. She and dad would always play gin rummy after dinner. Dad never won, yet he was content to keep her happy by continuing to play.
While living in Toronto, Marnie and Dick spent their summers in Muskoka at the Log’n’Lantern trailer park, where their busy social life led to many lifelong friendships. They loved Muskoka so well they chose to retire to a permanent home in Bracebridge where they lived happily for 21 years. Marnie quickly made new friends and was very involved in the social activities about town. Whenever we accompanied mom to town for errands, we were amazed by how many people would greet her by name, from the local pharmacy to the employees at YIGS. When Dick passed away, Marnie moved into Castle Peak Retirement home where she continued to play cards, shop for new clothes, make new friends and interact with existing ones.
Marnie’s passing will leave a large gap in the hearts of the ones who loved her most: Lann and Bob, Tracey and Jim, Dawn, Stan, Hannah and Mira, sister Lynn and brother-in-law Jack, and her nephews and their wives, John and Amy, Stephen and Jen.
Mom, we hope you are happy in heaven reuniting with dad and winning at cards.
We will not be having a funeral or service at this time. We hope to have a gathering when the weather is better so we can celebrate Marnie with all her dear friends in Bracebridge.
For those who wish and in lieu of flowers, donations in Marnie’s memory may be made to the Bracebridge Senior Citizens Centennial Club, 54 Dominion St., Bracebridge, Ontario P1L 2A5 http://www.bracebridgeseniorsclub.org/ and can be arranged through Reynolds Funeral Home.
Messages of condolence, memories, and photos may be shared through the tribute wall above this obituary.