Centenarian Flo Kenyon showed her family an open mind is not limited by age or education
Florence Ethel Kenyon: Wife. Mother. Grandmother. Puppet maker. Born April 30, 1922, in Calgary died Might 21, 2022, in Airdrie, Alta., of pure results in aged 100.
The 1 issue you really should know about Florence Ethel Kenyon, is that she was a woman who did not wish to be found. In nearly each and every photo she is increasing her hand to block the digicam from capturing her image.
In the pictures she was not able to evade, you will see glimpses of the liveliness she attempted to conceal – wild auburn curls tumbling down to body a face of variety, shiny eyes and a warm, open smile. (On lots of of these photographs she expertly obscured her bosom with crafter’s ribbon, believing her system was much too shapely or her blouses as well showy.)
Flo’s ease and comfort outside of the fray may have occur as a result of currently being the past of 4 kids, at minimum 15 years youthful than her closest sibling and the only one born in Canada. She grew up on a sprawling corner great deal on the western outskirts of Calgary. As a female, she attended the two-place West Calgary School but because the nearest significant university was much too much away to attain by foot, her official education just finished at Quality 9.
In the course of the war, Florence Knock labored at the Unbiased Biscuit Co. (her only paying position) and soon right after fulfilled George Kenyon, who was serving in the navy but was stationed in Calgary. Their substantial church wedding day in 1946 was adopted by a basic reception in her parents’ backyard. Florence and George created a 4-area shack ideal beside her childhood property. Their initially son arrived a calendar year later on in 1947.
Like several women, there are two Florences to recall: to start with, the hard, self-control-dispensing matron of the Kenyon clan, attempting to keep gregarious George and her unruly sons, Alan and Gord, on small leashes: a regular fight for the straight and slim. This Florence hung sheets on a frozen clothesline and heated rocks in the oven, stuffing them in her children’s military cot beds to stave off the Calgary winter season. (A spouse and children story also has Florence consistently thawing the frozen-solid goldfish bowl on the stove, the fish reanimating back again to daily life by supper.)
And then there is the Flo who emerged when her boys ended up developed and long gone. With successive arrivals of 4 excellent grandchildren, she warmed and softened like a thick pat of butter, featuring them no matter what they pointed to and dropping “no” from her vocabulary. She grew to become the giver of Turkish Delight candy bars, unlimited back again tickles and lilting bedtime stories that summoned and motivated the deepest of sleeps.
As Grandma, she was sage, magician, chef and camp counsellor. She could make puppets out of Major Mac containers and doll beds out of sponges and scrap fabric. She built the greatest Kraft Supper, eschewing the prop
osed butter-to-milk ratio for a concoction considerably creamier and decadent.
Many years afterwards, when her 1st grandchild came out as gay, his moms and dads thought perhaps Flo had misunderstood, she was so nonchalant and accepting. They informed her again the upcoming morning, and she nodded and patted their arms, questioned how they were undertaking with it – proving an open mind and an open coronary heart are not restricted by age or training.
In 2001, Florence turned a widow, shedding her George right after 55 years of marriage. By then she experienced taken more than the family purse strings from her ailing partner and removed their financial debt with her elementary university math and common perception. Her mates were the bank tellers, Safeway cashiers and bus motorists she observed day-to-day. On his closing working day of operate just before retiring, the bus driver for her route asked if Florence would like to journey with him for the remainder of the working day. She graciously accepted, and the two chatted for several hours, as previous good friends do.
At the end, Florence remaining us in the mild silence of evening, her son and daughter-in-legislation by her facet, her complete family’s appreciate wrapped comfortable versus her. The perfect cocoon for whatever arrives upcoming.
David Kenyon is Florence’s grandson.
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