It is with great sadness that we announce the passing of Dorothy Segal, peacefully at home surrounded by the love of family, at the age of 91, on Wednesday October 7, 2020.
Dorothy will be remembered with love by her daughter and son-in-law Alison and Todd Sheriff; grandchildren, Ian, Laura, and Jayme; sisters-in-law Marion Korn, Sylvia Segal, and Marge Segal; brother-in-law Mickey Hoch, as well as many nieces and nephews. She was predeceased by her parents, Isadore and Laura Korn, husband, Percy Segal, brother, David Korn, and brothers-in-law and sisters-in-law, Gilbert and Elsie Segal, Carol and Morris Berkal, Morry Segal, Sylvia and Morris Sheldon, Rita Hoch, Albert Segal, and Bill Segal and Tannia Segal-Whitzman.
Dorothy was born in Winnipeg in 1928 and lived a rich and fulfulling Jewish life in the city’s north end. She went to Peretz School and St. John’s High School, and then with the encouragement of her brother David, she also pursued a University education, first a Bachelor of Arts from the University of Manitoba (1950), and then a Bachelor of Library Science from McGill (1952). Thus, began her career with the University of Manitoba libraries – first at Elizabeth Dafoe Library during Elizabeth Dafoe’s tenure there, until 1964, when Alison was born, and then for another 13 years starting in the seventies at the Dental Library, where she formed a bond with a special group of library ladies.
She married Percy in 1953, and they shared 45 wonderful years together living the whole time at their house on Daffodil street in Garden City with summers at Winnipeg Beach. She helped him in his business – a very detailed and organized bookkeeper, and when they retired together in 1987, they spent the next 10 years enjoying retirement – travelling – Israel, Europe, and Asia, lots of trips to Toronto, with winters in Palm Springs. Percy took her to sports events – hockey, baseball, football, horseraces, and Dorothy took him to art galleries and museums. When Percy got sick 22 years ago, she selflessly dedicated herself to looking after him.
Dorothy was an active member of Na’amat, Hatikvah chapter, serving in various position on the executive. She participated in B’nai B’rith bowling leagues and was a very talented Mahjong player. She liked knitting and reading. She was comfortable with her own company. And she enjoyed her daily walks and coffee with friends in Kildonan park (summer and winter) (the mall if it was really cold).
At 75, she bravely packed up a house full of memories, left her extended family and friends, and moved to Toronto to be close to Alison and Todd, Ian, Laura, and Jayme. She lived in a lovely condominium 5 minutes away, that she always used to say was “too nice for her.”
Her greatest joy was her family. As a mother and mother-in-law, she was completely unselfish, always so generous and giving of her time. She was fiercely protective, and she was not afraid to speak her mind, to defend those close to her, or to just tell it like it is. She wasn’t so concerned with what others thought – the most important thing, was standing up for what was true and right. And she knew what was important. She rarely complained. She reserved any tears and sadness for when no one was around. She was a worrier – the 2 words so often heard from her were “BE CAREFUL”. But she was always quick to say that everything would be ok. She was supportive, uplifting, and we knew she was proud.
Becoming a Boobi to Ian, Laura, and Jayme was one of her biggest joys. She was an ever-reliable babysitter, always willing to hop on a plane in a moment’s notice, usually with a suitcase filled with toys, books, and clothes (sometimes a Jeanne’s cake or some great Target finds). So warm and loving and patient, freely getting down on the floor to play, read, whatever would keep them happy. She took such pride and naches in watching them grow, attending birthday parties, school plays and events, and all three Bar and Bat Mitzvahs. Her greatest wish, always, was that Percy could be there to see them.
The last few years of Dorothy’s life battling Alzheimer’s Disease were not her best years, but she lived them with the same calmness, grace, dignity, and strength of character that she lived her whole life. All her caregivers loved her, laughed with her, and thought she was their kindest and easiest person to look after. She was so quick with the thank you’s to all of them. Even her doctor once remarked that she was one of a kind – one of the nice ones.
The family wishes to thank Dorothy’s wonderful longtime caregivers Myrel and Aneta who showed her such tremendous kindness, love, and compassion, and kept her so comfortable at home. Thank you also to her LHIN care coordinator, Svetlana, the personal support workers from SRT, especially Nelda, Lourdes, and Virgie, the nurses from Saint Elizabeth Health Care, Dr. Richard Allen, Dr. Alejandra Villalobos Vazquez, and Dr. Chung.
Finally, a special thank you to family and friends for their outpouring of love, support, and generosity, and for sharing their memories of Dorothy. It means so much to know that she will be remembered in a special way by the many whose lives she touched.
A graveside service was held on Friday, October 9 at Rosh Pina Cemetery with Rabbi Kliel Rose officiating. Pallbearers were Todd Sheriff, Joel Korn, Brian Sheldon, Steven Moscovitch, Brent Apter, and Ari Marantz.
Donations may be made to the Dorothy and Percy Segal Memorial Fund c/o The Jewish Foundation of Manitoba (204) 477-7520, or to a charity of your choice.
Dorothy, we love you, and we will miss you, and you will always be with us in our hearts and memories.