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Violet Annie May “Tootsie” McCallum (nee McFayden), 86, of Rainycrest Long Term Care in Fort Frances, Ont., passed away at her residence on Wednesday, Oct. 8, 2008.

She was born Jan. 4, 1922 in Fort Frances to Frederick and Ethel McFayden.

In May, 1941, Violet received her diploma from Loney’s Hairdressing signed by Edna M. Loney. She enjoyed hairdressing, and kept it up as a hobby many years after she became a homemaker.

In March, 1943, she became the bride of Gordon F. McCallum of Fort Frances, and followed him to various postings such as Kingston, Ont. and Debert, N.S. until he was shipped overseas during WWII. She then returned to her family to wait out the war.

During the time in Nova Scotia, Vi worked at Moire’s chocolate factory. Fifty years later, if handed a box of Pot of Gold candy, she still could glance at them and tell you what the fillings were. She also became very close to the McCallum relatives in the Brookfield/Truro area, and maintained contact with them over the years.

1971 was the year that Vi and Gordon had the chance to return to the Maritimes to visit with family and see all the old sights. They also made time for a nostalgic visit to Old Fort Henry at Kingston along the way.

October, 1952 heralded the birth of long-awaited daughter, Cheryl Lynne, and after that Vi was busy! There were Brownies, CGIT, figure skating, music lessons, and eventually a horse to keep the whole family running. She finally had to learn to drive a car just to get everywhere on time, and, of course, virtually supplied free transport to all Cheryl’s friends at the same time.

Vi’s home was never without a pet for very long. Dogs were the favourite, but over the years budgies, canaries, and turtles, with an occasional cat, joined the family group.

Her great joy in life, and almost full-time hobby, was her garden. She started her bedding plants shortly after Christmas each year in the basement—covering the pool table with plywood, enclosing it with a plastic tent, and hanging grow lights. It was a lot of work, but for many years her flower beds abounded with the many colourful blooms.

Violet is survived by her daughter, Cheryl Lynne; brother, Kenneth McFayden (Mayva); sisters-in-law, Merle and Pat McFayden; as well as numerous nieces and nephews. Her beloved companion “Molly” also survives.

She was predeceased by her husband, Gordon F. McCallum; parents, Fred and Ethel McFayden; and brothers, Gordon, Lloyd, and Lyle.

Funeral services were held Tuesday, Oct. 14, 2008 at 2 p.m. at Green Funeral Home in Fort Frances, with Rev. Barbara Miller officiating.

Interment took place in Riverview Cemetery in Fort Frances.

Friends visited with family prior to the funeral service on Tuesday at Green Funeral Home.

The honourary pallbearers were Susan Johnstone, Ruth McHarg, Josephine Meilleur, Sybil Mowe, Linda McFayden Tutin, Fay Abbey, Dawn Galston, Malverne Steele, Betty, Lorna, Donald, and Ross Cameron.

In memoriam donations may be made to the Garden of Life c/o LaVerendrye General Hospital, 110 Victoria Ave., Fort Frances, Ont., P9A 2B7 or to the charity of your choice.

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