Peacefully in her daughter’s arms Flo Campbell went to join the love of her life, Jack, on Thursday May 30, 2019. Our Mom had a song for everything and if she were here to write this, she would have a fitting one no doubt. Ask anyone! Younger people often didn’t believe her that the songs were real songs when she started to sing some tunes. Shortly before she passed away, she turned to her nurse and started to sing “I am going to live ’til I die” (sung by Frank Sinatra for those who don’t know!)
And, she did just that. Mom lived a full and happy life.
Flo was born in Toronto, Ontario on August 7, 1932 the youngest child of Phil and Dolly Bullough. “Toronto the Good” as she called it was her playground and she loved everything about it. Flo attended Givins Public and Parkdale Collegiate schools with great pride making many lifelong friends. One of those childhood friends was her soul-mate John (Jack) Campbell. After playing on Fennings Street as youngsters they became inseparable in their pre-teen and teen years. On September 1, 1951 they were married in Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario where Jack was working at the time. They were married in the Salvation Army, the church they both called home. Their children, Phyllis (Denis), Robert (Kathryn) and Donald (Jane) were left with a legacy of what true love is.
Flo enjoyed all that life had to offer. Whether it was keeping house, working one of her many clerical jobs she enjoyed with the Government of Canada or being a hockey and baseball Mom, she loved all she did. She took to gardening with her green thumb. The veggie garden always supplied wonderful summer treats for sandwiches and suppers alike. Flo had a great love for music of all types, except country/western and bagpipes! With a name like Campbell it was hard sometimes to avoid that. She knew the words to so many songs from Broadway musicals like Wicked, one of her all-time favourites that she saw performed in England while visiting there with her son Donald, to silly ditties that her and her sisters would sing while doing dishes. Many of those fun songs she passed on to her grandchildren, Jennifer (Stan), John (Pom), Jeffrey (France), Benjamin and Bradley and her great-grandchildren, John Paul, Breanna, Jorden, Mikita, Quinlan, Coral and Jesse. She also took great pride in the musical abilities passed on down to her son Don! Her feet wouldn’t stop tapping to a tune if she heard one. Her and Jack took up dance lessons in their retirement days in Panama City Beach Florida and could dance up a storm together. Just a few weeks before she passed away a gentleman at the Residence asked her to dance during Happy Hour. She talked about it for days afterward. What a joy that was for her!
If Flo wasn’t dancing, she would be looking for a good card game. Any game with cards would just about do but her game of choice was poker. She loved to watch and even bet a few pennies. Literally, she bet pennies! And if you saw the size of her penny jar, you would know that she very rarely lost.
In the end, Flo’s greatest joy was her family. She loved each member deeply. She moved to Winnipeg at the age of 80 to be close to her daughter and her daughter’s family. She imparted on them great gifts of wisdom and humour they won’t ever forget. Staying in touch by phone was always important to her and even in her last moments she had the opportunity to talk to both her sons and remind them of how much she loved them and to hear how much they loved her.
Flo adjusted to changes in her life with courage and dignity, whether it was moving when Jack was transferred, or when she was stricken with Parkinson’s Disease. She was an example of how to live whatever life brings you with your head held up and a song, even a silly one, on your lips.
Flo was predeceased by her husband Jack, her parents, siblings, Alfred (Joan) Bullough, Margaret (Henry) Kostin and Gladys Bullough, brother-in-law Billy, sister-in-law Norma and good friends Bernice, Marg and Logan. She is survived by her 3 children, 5 grandchildren and 7 great-grandchildren, her sister-in-law Jacqui, her nieces, Lindy, Lynne, Roberta, Linda and Sharon Ann, her nephew Bobby, many great-nieces and nephews and relatives from Scotland and England. She will be truly missed by her wonderful friends from Malton, Sutton and Panama City Beach as well at the Seine River Retirement Residence, especially Irene.
September 1st held such special meaning to our Mom and Dad; their first date, their engagement and their wedding all took place on that date, so as they requested they will be interred together on September 1st at Prospect Cemetery in Toronto.
Our family would like to thank the marvellous staff at the Seine River Retirement Residence for making our Mom feel so much at home and well cared for. We would also like to thank her family physician, Dr. K. Elias for being so watchful in her care. And, we would especially like to thank the Grace Hospital staff including the ICU staff and doctors for their gentle and compassionate care while overseeing Mom’s last days. You all made our journey so much easier.
Our Mom would ask that you remember her when you raise your glass, especially if it is a white rum and Diet Coke, and to take the time to be with each other enjoying all the moments in this wonderful life!
“Wait for me, wait for me” I’ll be coming home, wait for me
The Righteous Brothers “Unchained Melody”