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RITCEY – Mildred Gordon

January 14, 1907 – March 3, 2011

Mildred Gordon Ritcey died peacefully at age 104 on March 3, 2011 in Calgary.

She was born in 1907 in Richmond Hill, New York to Jeremiah and Mary Nickerson, both of Halifax County, Nova Scotia. The family relocated to Nova Scotia in 1919 where Mildred received her education, culminating in a B.A. degree from Dalhousie University in 1929 and receipt of the Governor General’s medal. She became a teacher and taught in several communities, including Cole Harbour, N.S. where she met Murray Ritcey. They were married in 1932 and through the years led a busy and rewarding life in the Cole Harbour – Dartmouth area, contributing in many ways to the social and cultural life and growth of the district. Mildred was at various times a school teacher, piano teacher, director of amateur plays and was on the executive board of the University Women’s Club of Dartmouth. She was an avid reader, a lover of music and a gardener.

Since 1996 Mildred has resided in Calgary, Alberta to be near her son and daughter. At the time of her death she had been a resident of the Father Lacombe Care Centre in Calgary since 2001. The family wishes to sincerely thank the staff at Father Lacombe for their care and concern of Mildred during her residency.

Mildred was pre-deceased in 1986 by her husband, Murray, and later by her sister, Eleanor Erickson of Dallas, Texas. She is lovingly remembered by her children: daughter, Eleanor May (Philip); son, Robert Ritcey (Marjorie) all of Calgary; daughter, Janet Cornelius of Gainesville, Florida; grandchildren Kurt (Diane), John (Sally) and Jeffrey Ritcey, Lynn Cowan, Peter (Shannon) and Catherine May (Matthew Andrews); and by ten great-grandchildren.

A memorial service will be held at the McInnis & Holloway Park Memorial Chapel in Calgary (5008 Elbow Drive SW, Calgary) on March 10, 2011 at 3:00 p.m. Condolences may be forwarded through The family kindly requests that, in lieu of flowers, memorial tributes in memory of Mildred may be made directly to the Father Lacombe Care Centre (332 146 Avenue SE Calgary, AB T2X 2A3, or to a charity of choice.

In living memory of Mildred Ritcey, a tree will be planted at Fish Creek Provincial Park by McINNIS & HOLLOWAY FUNERAL HOMES, Fish Creek Chapel, 14441 BANNISTER ROAD S.E. Telephone: (403) 256-9575.

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Condolence Messages

  1. To The Family of Mildred Ritcey
    Please accept our condolences on the death of Mildred. We knew her from Saint James and became good friends and even had the privilege of visiting her in her Florida home at Holmes Beach where she was a gracious hostess. She was a grand lady who lived life to the full. Take time to grieve your loss but celebrate her long life.
    Glenn and Margie MacLean

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  2. Jim Eisener :

    To: Family of Mildred Ritcey
    Please accept my condolences on the death of Aunt Mildred. I have many fond memories from my youth of trips to the “country” to the family farm to visit Grampie Ritcey and his extended family. Be it the hours spent weeding, helping to make sauerkraut in the barn, simply listening to tales in the feed store… or time spent with your parents and others at the Red School House …
    Although the landscape of Cole Harbour and the Ritcey Homestead has changed significantly since my youth … I am still flooded with fond memories whenever I drive by or stop into Walker’s Feed Store to purchase bird feed.
    Having recently lost my father “Ron”, I’ve discovered the grieving process was quickly replaced with a flood of memories of events & stories many of which ..long forgotten have brought an unexpected joy & gratitude for these life experiences…
    I’ve no doubt, given the life Mildred lead you will be similarly blessed.
    God Bless you all
    Jim Eisener – Dartmouth

    1. If you haven’t visited Walker’s Feed’s website, there are several pictures posted there which may test your memory.
    2. Somewhere I have some old pictures of the Ritcey Family (came from Dad’s) , not sure where I put them but if your interested in getting them let me know. (I suspect they were originally Pearl’s)

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  3. Paul and Peggy Jensen :

    To all of Mrs. Ritcey’s family,
    We were so sorry to read of Mrs. Ritcey’s passing, it was so nice to connect with you Eleanor last year and learn where Mrs. Ritcey was and all your news of the family.
    Your Mom and Dad were such great neighbours of ours on the Cole Harbour Rd., your Mom was the first one to come and introduce herself when we moved in and she brought some biscuits and from that time on they became very good friends and when we had to move to the Valley whenever we would come to town we would go and visit until your Dad passed away then we visited your Mom.
    They were so loving to both our boys and they remember them fondly.
    Our thoughts and prayers are with you all and I know both your Mom and Dad are together again.
    Love Peggy and Paul

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  4. Nancy and John Hood :

    Our thoughts are with you at this time. Nancy has fond memories of Mildred and visiting the family and farm.

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  5. Ralph and Jeanne Settle :

    Our prayers and thoughts are with you at this time. We knew Mildred and her husband when they lived in Cole Harbour. She has had a wonderful long life.

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  6. Joan Payzant :

    To Mrs. Eleanor May:
    Dear Eleanor:
    My sympathy to you and your family. I have missed your mother every time I go to our CFUW meetings. She was the president and I was her secretary away back in the 50s. She was an inspired leader and had wonderful ideas for projects which made the club a lively one. We had a play reading group and enjoyed Dylan Thomas’ “Under Milkwood.” I have some lovely photos of the farewell garden party we had for her, but I can’t figure out how to send them on this WWW page – I only know how to navigate e-mail.

    My condolences to all your family. I read with interest how many descendants there are. I have three great grandchildren in Medicine Hat, and step-grandchildren in Calgary, but my travelling days are over so I don’t see them.

    Your Mother has left a wonderful legacy.

    Sincerely, Joan (Murray) Payzant

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  7. Maralyn Slade and Joan Slack :

    To the Ritcey family – our thoughts are with you at this time. It was a surprise to read of Mrs. Ritcey’s passing. I often wondered where she lived after leaving Cole Harbour, as she and Murray were such prominent residents of the area. I had the tremendous luck to have Mrs. Ritcey as my 8th grade teacher, altho’ an ‘unruly’ class, she did her best to instill the love of literature and history into all of us. My mother, Joan Slack worked very close with Murray and Mildred in organizing and operating the C.Hbr Heritage Society. She was a lady in every sense, softspoken, interesting and delightful to be with , I feel very privileged to have known her.

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  8. Donna Hutchinson née Atkinson for Rev. r. Bruce and Doris Atkinson :

    Our sincere condolences are sent to you the family today. We knew your darling mother 1955-57 while Bruce was the student minister in Cole Harbour. Mildred was the very accomplished organist and teacher who made all singers look good on Sunday mornings. Doris remembers Mildred’s love of our daughter’s long braids.
    Bruce remembers the strong community support they gave to all projects large or small…such hard workers and joyful givers of their time. Our family was always welcomed like family whenever we entered their home. You must be so proud to have had such a wonderful mother.

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  9. H. Scott Morash :

    Mildred’s many friends in Cole Harbour, NS have fond memories of her life with us in our community. As we grew up she was always a steady, informed and supportive person on whom we could rely. She is missed but not forgotton.
    Our sincere condolences to the family. Lloyd and Bunny Eisener, Gerrie and David Morash, Nancy and Ira Patriquin and Bev and Scott Morash.

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  10. To the Ritcey Family,
    I had the great pleasure of getting to know Mildred when I worked at FLCC. I enjoyed our Monday morning Coffee Talk groups, many wonderful lunch outings and especially our private conversations. She always spoke so fondly of her family and was so proud to share of all your accomplishments. I am grateful for all the bits of wisdom that she shared with me over the years. She was a remarkable woman and I am very honoured to have known her.
    Jan Knopp

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  11. Donald MacAlpine :

    To Robert Ritcey
    Dear Bob,
    We both lived at the Gardners on South St. in Halifax in the 50’s when you were in University and you used to tell me about Cole Harbour. Little did I know that I would soon be making a home in that vicinity and watch it change from a farming community to a very different place. Please accept my sympathy and condolences to you and your family on the death of your mother.
    Sincerely, Don MacAlpine

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  12. Gery & Denyse Irwin :

    Bob, Janet & Eleanor,
    Please accept our heartfelt condolences on the passing of your mum, a super great woman who had a real impact on all who knew her. Denyse, who was a member of the UWC with her, remembers her fondly & joins me in sending along these wishes. Ironically, we lost another great Dartmouthian yesterday as Arnie Patterson, the founder of CFDR passed away. We shall make a donation to the Dartmouth General Hospital, for whom I do some work, in her name, as I am sure many others will do. In passing, the old Greenvale reunion was held this past October & was a huge success with double the numbers we had been expecting showing up. Visitors even got to visit the old school which has been beautifully renovated & is now apartments…you would have had a ball!
    Stay healthy & enjoy each day.
    Gerry & Denyse

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  13. Rebecca Stockhausen :

    My condolences to Milred’s family. I have fond memories of our good times together at CFUW/Dartmouth. We were in the Jaunters together. She was a lovely woman.

    I will make a donation to your club’s scholarship fund in her memory.

    Rebecca Stockhausen
    Dartmouth, NS

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