The family of Eileen Rickard (née McEvoy) of Collingwood, Ontario, is saddened to announce that she passed away on Friday, March 17, at the age of 84. She will be lovingly remembered by her husband of 51 years, Chris, her three children, Derek (Stairky), Stephen (Liz) and Ciara, her two grandchildren, Victoria and Liam, her siblings, Martin, Mary, Michael, Anne and Kathleen, and her many nieces, nephews and cousins. She is predeceased by her sisters Julie and Theresa and her brother Patrick.
Eileen was born the seventh of nine children on August 15, 1938, in Abbeyleix, Co. Laois, Ireland, to Patrick and Mary McEvoy (née Nolan). At 19, she left home and started her nursing career at St. Canice’s psychiatric hospital in Kilkenny, Ireland, and headed to London three years later to complete her training at Whipps Cross Hospital. Her nursing education opened the world up for travel, and she lived and worked in a number of places, including Dublin, Geneva, Tripoli and Boston, before settling in Toronto, Canada, where she met and married Chris (who’s originally from Surrey, England). She worked in a few hospitals in Toronto before becoming a community nurse, which she enjoyed for the autonomy it provided as well as for the increased opportunities to connect with patients. All manner of gifts and foods and wines came into the Rickard household over the years – especially at Christmastime – from patients who’d benefitted from her kind yet no-nonsense approach and wanted to somehow show their gratitude. After retirement, she moved to Collingwood, where she spent the last 12 years of her life, enjoying the abundant local nature and joining numerous social clubs.
Eileen was warmth and welcome personified – she had a natural curiosity about people and their experiences and as a result easily made friends, many of them lifelong. She touched countless people and will be fondly remembered by all.
A celebration of life will be held later in the spring. To leave words of comfort for the family, please visit www.fawcettfuneralhomes.com.