Obituary of Ann Primrose Parsons
Ann died suddenly on Monday, June 7, 2021, at her residence, Ivany Place in Bedford with her daughter at her side, holding her hand.
Ann was born to the late Parker and Albina (Hallett) Glencross in Antigonish, where she spent her early childhood, resulting in the cutest little “highland fling” pose you ever did see, along with a mischievous glint in her beautiful blue eyes and faint Gaelic lilt that could be heard peeking out in her speech here and there. Many a laugh was had by us kids having Mom repeat “chicken tortellini” with her sign-song syncopation that somehow added an extra “h” on most of the hard consonants. Mom had fond memories of her teenage years spent living in Chester, where her parents ran a gas station and lunch counter. A natural beauty with a fun-loving spirit and sense of adventure, she was popular with her peers.
She graduated from Miss Murphy’s Business College in Halifax, and soon after at 18, took on raising her four oldest sons by marriage. Coming from a family of 10 children, family was everything, and Mom did her best to make a solid home for the boys as best she could at such a young age herself, and while they moved quite often. In 1968, she took one look and knew right away, she had found her forever home in Purcell’s Cove. She lived for over 40 years at the end of Bluestone Road raising her youngest son and daughter on her own in a tiny cottage overlooking the Northwest Arm. The community provided her kids with an idyllic childhood. Mom worked in retail over the years including Westmount Windows and Doors, Maritime Paper and Paint, Simpson’s and Eaton’s. One of her favourite jobs before retirement was in private personal home care. She loved her clients like family and devoted her time to enriching their lives, adding thoughtful little touches such as bringing in hand-picked mayflowers and lilacs or their favourite homemade baked goods.
After retirement, she spent several months looking after her grandson, Nathan, and treasured having had the opportunity to spend so much time with him as a toddler. Mom faced every challenge with resilience and grace. She was the original DIY’er, living by a few of her often-quoted sage sayings, many passed down from her mother such as: “you can’t cry over spilt milk”; “necessity is the mother of invention”; and “where there’s a will, there’s a way”. That was Mom in a nutshell. Although resources were limited, Christmas and birthday celebrations were made magical, often with meaningful handmade touches.
She was a self-taught master of anything she put her hands and mind to, including cooking, gardening, technology, knitting and sewing. She went from not being able to sew to a seamstress overnight when hired to work in the fabric department at Eaton’s, creating the most fashionable looks for herself, formal dresses for her daughter and beautiful velvet dresses for her granddaughters. Her gardens were beautiful, and she was always looking to try out a new and exotic recipe, even up until last year. She looked forward to Friday’s Lexicon in the Herald, completing it and sending it in faithfully for years. One of her biggest regrets was that she never once won that prize for all her efforts (and may have muttered on more than one occasion that she was sure it was rigged).
She did however, become the “Lexicon Wiz”, flying through each one at lightning speed. Never having used a computer before, she mastered it within weeks, and she soon became the go to for any IT related issues. She loved Ganong’s Chicken Bones, listening to Seaside FM, and doing puzzles. She was no stranger to Netflix and Apple TV, often making recommendations on the latest binge worthy series. She lived by the motto that “laughter is the best medicine” and through tough times, could always find the humor in the situation. Mom’s biggest joy was her family.
She is survived by her children, sons, Kenneth (Mary Lou), Halifax; Michael (Valerie Jessome, deceased), Duncans Cove; NS; Donald (Sandy Walcott, deceased) Peterborough, ON; Mark (Shelley Wyse), Purcell’s Cove; and daughter Karin (Stephen Mavon), Halifax, NS, eight adored grandchildren, and several precious great grandchildren.
She was proud to come from such a large birth family and cherished each of her siblings, surviving, Ruth (Emmett, deceased) Schmitt, Temecula CA; brother, David (Leslie) Thorold ON; Caroline Hominchuck, Halifax ; Robert “Alan”, Glenholme NS; brother in-law, Mel Mosher, VA; and a host of nieces and nephews including Ruth Fox (Richard Cottingham), Waverley, NS.
She was predeceased by her parents; brothers, Reginald, Gary and Eric; sisters, Joan (in infancy), Joyce Fox and Margaret Mosher; and beloved son, Peter.
A special thanks to oncologist Dr. Lori Wood, who gave us the gift of five more years with Mom and to all who provided Ann and family with loving care and support over these past months post stroke.
A family celebration of life and burial in Country Harbour Mines to be held at a later date.
In honor of Mom’s love of the simple beauty found in nature and all creatures great and small (with one exception, her gardening nemesis, the earwig), donations to the Nova Scotia Nature Trust or an animal rescue shelter of choice in her memory are welcomed.