It is with saddened hearts that we announce the death of our matriarch. Mother, grandmother, great-grandmother, aunt, friend and confident; Mary Gertrude (Gertie) Chisholm passed away peacefully at her own home in Ohio, Antigonish Co. at the age of 87. Born in Antigonish she was the youngest child of the late John & Mayne (Fraser) MacDonald. She grew up in Purl Brook where she met her husband, Jackie, while trapping on the West River. She moved to the Chisholm homestead in the fertile lands of Hillcrest Ohio. Jackie and Gertie went on to have 12 children. Gertie worked alongside her husband Jackie and her Father in law, Jack Mike while raising their children. Gertie was a power to be reckoned with. Her strength, her wisdom her faith, her spiritual values and her sense of being kept her well-grounded while overcoming the many obstacles that life threw at her.
In 1968 Gertrude became a young widow, left to raise her children, she continued on with grace, dignity and a work ethic that is renowned by all. Gertie had an insightful gift to life; she loved all creatures great and small, and all humans large and small. Gertie could turn her hand to anything she put her mind to whether it be her amazing apple pies, her beautiful biscuits, her wood working masterpieces, or her famous geraniums. She was queen of recycling; she could magically turn a dime into a dollar. Her sense of wit and uncanny phrases with a huge voice to back it up made people laugh. Her acute sense of hearing made up for her visual impairment. Her loss of eye sight in her later stage of life did not hinder her spirits or shake her faith. She truly was a marvel. Gertie worked for years at St. Maratha’s in the house keeping department and later studied to become a ward clerk. Gertie was a member of The St. Johns Ambulance Corps, CWL and The Bird Watching Society. In her later years her pride and joy was selling her baked good at the Farmer's market.
She is survived by her children Micheal (Michelle), Ohio. Judy (Walter Cameron) Purl Brook, John P.(Beverly) Ohio, Bonita (John MacLean) St. Josephs, Jimmy Calgary, Donald (Ann Marie) Saltsprings, Lawrence Ohio, Mary (David MacInnis) West River. Nieces Joan Stewart, Marguerite Bethune, nephew Reverend Doug Stewart and many more special nieces and nephews. She will be forever remembered and respected by her 18 grandchildren and 23 great grandchildren.
Besides her husband, Jackie, she was predeceased by her infant daughter, Mary Catherine, her son Gabriel, her daughter Gwen, and her daughter Joan. She was also predeceased by her siblings, Ester Cameron, Helen Stewart and John MacDonald (Johnny Mac).
A special thank you to Dr. Michelle Murphy & Dr. John Hamilton for their continued dedication to our mother over the years. A very special thank you to all her care givers who provided such comfort and care over the years.
Visitation Saturday 7-9pm, Sunday 2-4pm, 7-9 pm at MacIsaac’s Funeral Home, Antigonish. Liturgy of Christian burial will be held at St. Joseph’s Church, St. Josephs Monday at 11:00am, Rev. Doug Stewart, and Father Sydney Mifflen presiding. Burial in St. Joseph’s Cemetery. Reception to follow at St. Joseph’s Lakeside Community Centre. Donations to the Canadian Red Cross or the CNIB. Family flowers only please.