Jenny Thib, a strong and true Viking until the end, died peacefully at her home in Englehart, December 1, 2017, with her loving daughter Christabel by her side.
Jenny Elfrida Thib (nee Mudrick) was born on June 17, 1922 in Dane, Ontario. The family moved to Englehart in 1927, where Jenny attended school. She was a gifted student who skipped two grades in public school. She attended the University of Toronto in 1939 and graduated from Toronto Normal School in 1941. During the last years of WWII, she worked in Toronto for Firestone Tire and DuPont, in their accounting departments. In 1974, Jenny received a Bachelor of Arts from Laurentian University. She taught school for almost forty years, starting in Island Falls, Ontario and ending her career at Englehart High School, retiring in 1983.
Jenny was married in March 1947 to Alexander Thib, in Kirkland Lake, Ontario. They built and operated a tourist camp in Gowganda, where she taught grades one to ten in a one-room school house. They moved to Englehart in the mid-fifties, where their three children were born. Alexander became Deputy Chief Ranger for Lands and Forests, commuting back and forth from Gowganda. He had served five years in WW II, spending three years as a prisoner of war. Alexander had to have many operations after the war, and Jenny cared for him each time. She was selfless and nurturing till the end.
As a mother, she respected her children’s individuality and provided education and guidance to help them develop ethical values and make the choices necessary to become happy, healthy, and responsible adults. She quoted Kahlil Gibran, “Your children are not your children. They are the sons and daughters of Life’s longing for itself. They come through you but not from you, And though they are with you yet they belong not to you.”
She was a devoted daughter, caring for her parents in many ways. From the time she was a child, she helped her father (who became Road Master for the T&NO/ONR Railway) write letters in English. In 1946 she helped her mother open Olga Mudrick’s Ladies’ Wear in Englehart. She continued to help until the store was sold in 1973. Later in her mother’s life, Jenny became her caregiver. Her mother was so grateful she called Jenny “An Angel”! Jenny was also a protective older sister for an adored younger brother.
She was an extraordinary teacher, who influenced the lives of hundreds of students with her compassion, patience, and encouragement. The accounting basics she taught prepared students to succeed in the real world. When she taught typing it was an optional skill—the lucky students who learned from her, now have the essential skill of keyboarding. No one will ever forget her famous words, “Hands on Home Row.”
She was a science fiction fan and a future thinker. She visited the University of Toronto in 1959, where she saw an early computer, the size of a huge room. The computer scientist typed in a question—out came an answer on the side. When she started teaching at EHS in the early 60’s, she attended a meeting of the Englehart School Board. In that meeting, she suggested that typing should be a mandatory course. They asked why. She said because computers will someday be in our offices, our schools, our homes. They almost laughed her out of the room and said, Jenny, how will they get that huge computer into all those places. She confidently replied, “They will make them smaller; I wouldn’t be surprised if they make them as small as a watch.”
Her skills and accomplishments were many: she studied and taught music and tap dance; she played piano (sometimes for silent movies) and church organ; she was an avid skier and loved playing baseball; she excelled at knitting, crocheting, and sewing; and she was a walking dictionary, who loved challenging crossword puzzles. She prepared taxes for herself and many friends, until her late 80’s.
She loved to listen and dance to 40’s Big Band Music. One of her favorite spots in Toronto was the Palais Royale Ballroom! She loved her dogs and cats; she loved horses, especially the race horse Secretariat!
Above all, she was an empathetic listener, a kind, generous, and humble woman, whose gentle goodness touched the hearts of everyone who knew her. Until the end she entertained all with her quick wit and sense of humour. She was a delight to spend time with and just loved when people would visit. She will be missed, but she will be remembered!
She was pre-deceased by her parents Olga and Harry Mudrick, her spouse, Alexander, and her brother, Norman and his spouse Marg.
She is survived by her daughters Marti Lea, Christabel, and Lanie, (Andrew Graham) and son Sean (Barbara). She will be remembered by many wonderful nieces, nephews, cousins, and dear friends.
Special thanks for their caregiving, support, visits, and gifts: Heather Erny, Karen Wareing (Murray), Valeri Mudrick-Hurst, Vicki Mudrick (Roy), Lori McLean (Steve), Roxanne Thompson (Gordon), Dawn Thib, Peri Thib, Jeff Pollock, Richard Beadman, Kim Jinkerson, Darlene Rodgers, Diane Schaafsma, Collette Rea, Mandy Dumas, Shai Ben Moshe, Resa Steindel Brown, Judy Crescenzo, Stella Bartsocas, Monica Valentine, and Samantha Shay.
In memorium, please donate to your favorite charity.
There will be a visitation at McDonald Funeral Home, Englehart, on Saturday December 9, 2017, 2:00 pm to 5:00 pm.
A celebration of life will be held in the summer of 2018.
Condolences, contributions and memorial candles may be left at www.mcdonaldfuneralhome.ca.