Passed away peacefully at her home on Friday, August 14, 2020 at the age of 95.
Beloved wife of the late Alfred Robert Askin. Devoted mother of Robert (Elaine Laporte), Jane Fournier (Richard), late Mary Anne Askin (Ted Crljenica), and Nancy Askin. Grandmother of Melanie Khoury (Vincent), Stephanie Fournier (Sanjiv Pillai), Tim, Bryan, and Natalie Crljenica and Christine Bick (Kevin). Great grandmother of Liv and Alexia Khoury, Daniella and Kaitlin Bick, and Frances Fournier-Pillai. Predeceased by her parents Jack and Blanche Clarke, brother Paul and Aileen Clarke, and sister-in-law Aloise and John Seally.
Muriel was born in Blenheim in November 1924. She grew up on the family farm, shaping life-long values: the importance of family and community, taking nothing for granted, and being thankful for the gift of each day. As a child, Mom was guided by her older brother Paul, who she spent countless hours with on the farm.
Mom thoroughly enjoyed music, both playing the piano and singing – two skills she passed on to family members and enjoyed throughout her entire life.
She was a graduate of the University of Western Ontario in 1947 with her Honours Bachelor of Arts in French and German. She taught at private schools in Toronto and Watford and continued her teaching skills throughout her life, always encouraging and passing on her worldly wisdom.
Muriel and Alf were married in 1951 and lived in several northern Ontario communities following Alf’s employment in the pulp and paper industry. Mom adapted quickly to life in the new small towns raising four children and becoming involved in the communities.
Completing her Ontario Real Estate Course once her children had left the house, she took on the challenges and opportunities that came with selling real estate and became active in the Soo. Mom was a life-long learner, completing several courses of interest from Algoma University.
Adventure and joy were integral to Mom’s life, as she explored and set foot on all seven continents. Road trips took her family (and friends) across Canada and south of the border with the station wagon and tent trailer. She was fascinated by nature and the beauty that our diverse world had to offer.
Mom was an avid reader and participated in local book clubs into her 90s. Every new book was an escape and source of fresh knowledge, as she constantly wanted to be up to date and challenged in her thinking.
She was an active member in the Central United Church choir and served as an elder. Her interest in volunteerism was broad, from being an executive member with the May Court Club, Sault Ste. Marie Children’s Aid Society, Questers, Red Cross Society, Meals on Wheels, teaching reading at the Northern Treatment Centre (Ministry of Correctional Services), and globally helping out at the local libraries in Webuye, Kenya and Santiago, Chile when Alf volunteered with Canadian Executive Services Overseas.
The Askin family house was opened to Rotary exchange students from Australia, Rhodesia (Zimbabwe), and Germany. She continued her family bonds formed with them by visiting their countries and keeping in touch from home for years to follow. She loved being in the presence of people younger than her which kept her youthful in spirit.
Her natural beauty radiated through her generous, quick, and warm smile throughout her entire life.
Muriel will be missed by nieces, nephews, cousins and many friends.
A Celebration of Life will be held at a later date.
In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions (payable by cheque or online) to ARCH, the Askin Family Bursary at Algoma University, or the Canadian Cancer Society would be appreciated by the family.
Arrangements entrusted to the Arthur Funeral Home – Barton & Kiteley Chapel (492 Wellington St. E. 705-759-2522). Please visit Arthur Funeral Home website obituaries to leave memories and condolences as a keepsake for the family.