Her children often heard her say “get up, you’ll feel better”. On April 29, 2021, at age 101, Dorothy Mary Forbes did not get up and no one feels better. Dorothy faced life with courage, grace, and generosity. She revelled in joys shared and faced challenges with resolve. Most of all she led by example through her unwavering service to family and friends.
Born in Calgary and growing up in Edmonton, Dorothy’s zest for life was formed in her youth. Athletic, competitive, and active, she appreciated all the opportunities the 1920’s and 30’s offered. While working in Edmonton she was spotted by a strapping young man with a big smile who stated, on first sight, that he was going to marry that girl. John “Jack” Forbes and Dorothy Martin were married and thus started their legacy. Along came Donna, then David, Bob, Doug, Lorie, Joanne, and Lisa. Dorothy and Jack loved life. Rousing parties with close friends, square dancing, curling and large family gatherings were their reward for hard work. Heartbreak struck when Jack died suddenly, leaving Dorothy with six children still at home. With the support of good friends, Dorothy went to work full time and refused to be defeated. She instilled in her children a sense of responsibility, rejoiced in their success, and supported when failure or disappointment hit. She cared for her aging parents and gave each of her children a childhood to remember. The family home was the gathering point and there was always room at the table for one more. Soon the in-laws and outlaws began arriving and Dorothy received them as her own. The feeling was mutual.
Retiring at age 70 allowed Dorothy time to spend with her beloved grandchildren and great grandchildren who treasure lifetime memories of their time with Grandma and will forever hear the family stories that made Dorothy so special. These stories are best told with a gin and tonic in hand and the summer sun shining down. Dorothy was fiercely independent and lived in her own home until her late 90’s. A fall put her into extended care and eventually into the Exquisicare Windermere Manor. The incredible and compassionate staff at the Manor has set the standard for how senior care should be delivered and for this the family sincerely thank them.
Deeply mourning the loss of Dorothy are her children, Donna Armstrong, David Forbes (Laverne Martin-Forbes), Robert Forbes (Laurie Rychnovsky), Douglas Forbes (Joyce), Lorie Grundy (Paul), Joanne Shields (Duncan) and Lisa Forbes. Missing their Grandma immensely are her grandchildren Jackie, Rob, Gillian, Emily, Danielle, Quinn, Hayley, Mollie, Grace, Samantha and Keltie and the much-loved great grandchildren Paige, Amy, Liv, Samson, Claire, Walter, and Margot. They provided Dorothy with unmatched joy and pride. The family circle extends far beyond the immediate as Dorothy’s kindness and spirit touched so many lives over the past century.
Memorial contributions may be made to the charity of one’s choice.