Widowed, and raised their children alone

  • Lettice Huggins née Kennedy (1718–1797), of Glenarb, parish of Aghaloo, county Tyrone, whose husband, John Huggins, died in 1756, leaving her with nine children, six of them under the age of ten years.
  • Anne Eliza Huggins née Crozier (c.1825–1900), of Dungannon, county Tyrone, whose husband, Samuel Carson Huggins, died in his forty-first year in 1865, leaving her with four children and one born posthumously.
  • Our maternal grandmother, Ethel May Kilpatrick née Flavell (1885–1976): her husband, Robert Edwin Kilpatrick, died in 1934. Grandma K. got a job as a cashier in a market ... after telling the proprietor that she'd operated a cash register before—which she hadn't. She just looked over the shoulders of her clerical work mates, and figured it out. Grandma K. was a model of perseverance, good humour, and dignity.
  • Grandma K.'s mother, Rachel Mary Gilmore (1855–1930): her husband, John Flavell, died of pneumonia in 1888, leaving her with three small children to raise. Great-grandmother Rachel took in laundry (and the children had to pitch in to help), including the vestments and altar linens for Holy Trinity church in Toronto. Rachel was a woman who endured.

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"The past is a foreign country; they do things differently there."—Lesley Poles Hartley (1895–1972), The Go-Between (1953).

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