With both sadness and peace, the family of Shirley V. Hines, of Moncton, NB and formerly of Lower Millstream and Bathurst, NB, announces her passing on February 3rd, 2023, at the Dr. Georges Dumont University Hospital. Born in Sussex, NB, to the late William and Ramona (Martin) Berry, she attended Sussex Regional High School (when not next-door eating fries and gravy while dodging the truant officer!) and later graduated from the New Brunswick Community College with programs in both Clerk Typist and French Language Studies, where she excelled and earned honours in her studies. Shirley was a student of life, even when the lessons were hard, and she adapted her world to roll with the punches, a true testament to her resiliency and heart.
There is a time to mourn and a time to celebrate a life. We choose to celebrate the life and legacy she shared with us and leaves behind. Shirley was a survivor, strong, brave, loving, forgiving, generous, and shared her laughter and light with the world anywhere she travelled. She entertained and connected through humour. She followed a multigenerational tradition of remaining young at heart, yet proudly acknowledged hailing from a “long line of tough old birds”. Her initials spelled “Shines” and she embodied warmth and comfort to those who loved her and whom she loved. She ended every phone call with “I love you” and called you back if she was not sure if you had heard her. Her hugs were of great comfort. She was pure sunshine and she loved large.
Mom was a free spirit who was easily recognized by her beautiful blonde hair, gentle smile and sparkle in her eyes. She often introduced herself as “Shirley, as in slowly but Shirley!” She was devoted to and proud of her family, always putting us first to give us a better life no matter how large the sacrifice. She was most at home at the beach (especially with Peggy) and loved a good road trip (to Bathurst, Sussex, or Graceland!) and hours lost in a great chat with a loved one. She loved horses, creating crafts, gardening, cuddling her feline companions, pulling off yet another gourmet meal for the family, having a good game of cribbage (where she and Gramma may or may not have been cheating!), and creating joy through her often-quiet acts of kindness. She was a “lady MacGyver” and could repair or fix anything with an often creative collection of supplies. She taught Sunday school, baked for school events, sponsored CNIB dogs, volunteered any time she was needed, and understood that to give purely is to receive many blessings in return. She was known to have knitted over 1000 baby hats which were donated to hospitals in Moncton, Sussex, and Amherst and created other gifts including mittens for special friends, kindiesocks for cold nights, snuggle sacks for new babies, and cat toys (much to the delight of her fur grandkitties, Dexter and Eleanor), often with no pattern, just trial and error or a Pinterest picture.
Mom contributed to many workplaces, most notably and recently at Walmart Pharmacy, Dieppe, N.B. where she took great pride in connecting with seniors, listening to their needs and taking care of them like she would want done for her (and which was certainly the case thanks to pharmacists Grant, Kathryn, and Josh later on). Mom was awarded a Star employee award for her compassionate care and was very proud of her work, sad only when her health prevented her from continuing.
Left to lovingly keep her memory alive are the members of her family, both biological and by choice, including her only child, Jennifer Michelle (James), her beloved sister Elizabeth (Doug) O’Donnell, adored nephews Andrew (Darlene), Peter (Ellen), Christopher (Ronda), and Nicholas (Tanya) O’Donnell and her treasured great nieces and nephews Emily and Isaac O’Donnell, Matthew and Owen O’Donnell, and Parker and Declan O’Donnell.
Mom is also survived by her Uncle Fred Martin (Helen), Aunt Sandra Kierstead (Ray), Aunt Betty Adair, Aunt Juanita Martin, and Aunt Gwen Martin. She also leaves behind her devoted “service cat” Dove who was a great comfort for her the last two years. Chosen family include her lifelong, most trusted best friend and soul sister, Peggy Russelland Peggy’s daughter, Jill. Her “brother from another mother” John Coombs (Nancy) and their children, Brandon and Jordon. Her dear friend, neighbour, and Jenn’s godmother, Shirley Peters (Tommy Duguay) and their daughter Tammy Gallant (Frank) and their girls, Renee and Janelle.
Special friends include Susan Campbell, Nancy Gray Murphy, Wanda Hopper, and Michelle Caines Pye. Mom always believed that true friendship was formed if you could go any length of time apart, still come together over tea, and fall back into rhythm as though no time had passed at all.
Shirley was predeceased by her parents, as well as uncles Alvin and Ernie Martin and her beloved companions, Gage, Minnie, and Chewy (who await her on the rainbow bridge).
We would be remiss not to acknowledge and give our most sincere thanks to the team responsible for supporting Mom through her health pathway over the years. To Dr. Matthieu Gaudet, Leah Da Costa Gil, Dre. Linda Leblanc, Veronique Thibodeau, Nicole and the Extra Mural/Kindred team-each one of you enriched and even saved Mom’s life along the journey. With your care, love, professional expertise, and ability to see the person, not just the stats, you supported her way with dignity, respect, compassion, and empathy. For that, we are infinitely grateful and deeply indebted to you all. To the staff of 3F and Dre. Marie Josee Nadeau, we could not have coped with Mom’s passing if not for the care and comfort provided to her as she peacefully found her wings.
Cremation has taken place. In keeping with Mom’s wishes, there will be no funeral service. Mom will be returned to the Earth and sea where she can once again find her freedom and be at peace.
Anyone wishing to make a donation in Shirley’s honour:
Donations to either Riley’s Cat Rescue, Moncton, NB via email firstname.lastname@example.org or to the Canadian Lung Association https://www.lung.ca/get-involved/donate/make-general-donation/online-donate-form would be greatly appreciated. Arrangements are in the care of Elhatton’s Funeral Home (www.elhatton.com), Bathurst.
“Love doesn’t die, People do. So, when all that’s left of me is love, give me away.” (Merritt Malloy)
“When she is far away
You'll think of her each day
And you know she'll wait for you
That's someone you never forget”