LAKING, Lillian Ann
January 30, 1938 — March 12, 2023
On March 12, 2023, Lillian Ann Laking (née Lyle) received her wings and went to walk with the angels after a valiant battle with dementia. She was 85 years old.
Lillian was born January 30, 1938, in Oxdrift, Ontario, to Edna and George Lyle and was the youngest of seven children. She lost her father when she was only six months old and was raised by her mom with the help of a devoted uncle, Pete Latimer. She spent her early years on the family farm before moving to Dryden, ON after her mom sold the family farm. It was there that Lillian grew up and met the love of her life, Eugene “Gene” Laking, whom she married on December 22, 1955. Gene’s work had him transferred several times to Montreal, QC; Branford, ON; and Calgary, AB. In each place, Lillian and Gene established strong roots and friendships that would last a lifetime. They were both active members of The Royal Canadian Legion and seniors curling. Upon retirement, they returned to Dryden, where they relished being back with family and enjoying the outdoors. It was here that Lillian was an active member of the United Church in Dryden and the Hospital Axillary. In 1998, Lillian selflessly donated a kidney to Gene when he suffered renal failure. This gift gave Gene a new lease on life that lasted a span of over 15 years. When Gene’s health again started to deteriorate, they made the decision to move to Kelowna, BC, where they could be closer to their daughter, Robin, as well as more advanced medical facilities. This is where Lillian cared for Gene diligently and lovingly until his passing in 2014.
Lillian was predeceased by Gene, her husband of 59 years; by her parents, Edna and George; and siblings Betty, Marjorie, Evelyn, Gordon, and David. She is survived by her sister Jeannette; her adoring children Robert (Cheryl) and Robin Hoffman (Marty); by grandchildren Jodi, Kyle (Dawn), Andrew, and Daniel; and great-grandchildren Maddy and Hannah. She was a loving aunt to numerous nieces and nephews and a cherished friend to all that knew her.
Lillian was happiest when she was in the kitchen baking. Those that knew her could always count on homemade meals, bread and treats no matter when you stopped by to visit. She loved to bake for others and loved to share this skill with her children and grandchildren. She was especially known for her pies and cookies, and she always had these treats in her freezer ready for unexpected guests.
The family would like to thank all the RNs, LPNs, and care aids at Glenmore Lodge for the loving care they offered to Lillian during her time living there. The staff were true angels in taking care of not only Lillian but her family till she left us. From the bottom of our hearts, your generous love, care, and compassion will never be forgotten.
A Celebration of Life for Lillian and interment of her ashes in the Kelowna Memorial Park Cemetery will be held at a later date.
In lieu of flowers, donations to the Canadian Alzheimer’s Society are appreciated.
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