Obituary of Shirley May Lindsay
Lindsay, Shirley May
Shirley May (Woolmer) Lindsay passed away suddenly at her home in Kingston on February 2, 2021. Born September 7, 1929, in Montreal, she is survived by her loving husband, partner and best friend of 70 years, James Gordon Lindsay, and their adoring children, Sharon Swaby (Stephen Swaby) of Sacramento, California; Heather Lindsay of Hudson, Quebec; Geoffrey Lindsay (Joy Tremblay) of Kingston; and David Lindsay (Janice Downton) of Carlisle, Ontario. She will be much missed by her grandchildren, Jason Newcomen (Nilu Al-Shourbaji) of Montreal, Kevin Newcomen (Kristina Laperle) of Ottawa, Rachel Swaby (Tim Leong) of Los Angeles, California, and Sean Swaby of Brooklyn, New York, and by her great grandchildren, Rachel and Tim’s Linus and Simone, and Jay and Nilu’s Kian.
Shirley and Gordon met in 1947 in Hamilton, Ontario, where Shirley was a high school student recently moved from Montreal and Gordon was a graduate student in physical chemistry at McMaster University. They were married in the Chapel of the Church of the Ascension in Westmount, Quebec, in 1950 when both were at McMaster. On Gordon’s graduation they moved to Arvida, Quebec (now Saguenay), where they spent 22 years while Gordon was working for Alcan Aluminium (now Rio Tinto Alcan). In addition to raising four young children, Shirley worked tirelessly in the Saint Patrick Society and Arvida kindergarten. Fluently bilingual, in the 1960s she was a local representative for a study into the amalgamation of Catholic and Protestant school boards.
After living for three years in Montreal where Shirley worked in the McGill management library, Shirley and Gordon moved to Jamaica for 8 years, which were the best years of their life together. On their return to Canada and to Kingston in 1984, they spent their retirement years travelling, doing house exchanges with couples from different countries, and delving into the ancestry of our Lindsay and Woolmer families.
Shirley was always thinking of others and what she could do to make their lives happier, including corresponding by handwritten letters and cards with friends who were not computer-literate. In latter years she greatly enjoyed attending the Thousand Islands Playhouse productions. She will be sorely missed by her sister Beverley Cairns and her family and by all who knew her.
She will be cremated and, by her choice, no funeral services will be held. A celebration of her life will be held in the future. Donations in her memory may be sent to the Thousand Islands Playhouse, via their website.