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Jane (O'Rourke) Peters

July 4, 1942 ~ April 6, 2022 (age 79)


On Wednesday April 6th, this earth lost an incredible angel. Our sweet and sassy Jane Elizabeth Peters (O’Rourke) passed peacefully after a courageous journey through cancer. Jane squeezed every last minute out of this past year, never squandering a day, never complaining, living every tough day with grace and dignity, doing what she wanted to do; spending time with the people she loved and laughing…a lot.


Jane was born into a family who knew how to have a good time. Born in 1942 in the small quaint stone town of St. Mary’s to the sweetest parents, Bill and Vernetta O’Rourke. She grew up surrounded by love and laughter in an eclectic mix of talented family including artists, world travellers, teachers, and farmers. Her youth was spent at her cousins farms between Wellburn and Kirkton, swimming at the St. Mary’s quarry every day after school and every day getting in trouble for missing curfew. She was known to shout from the rooftops of main street businesses to boys riding in their cars below, and spending days and nights on the beach in Grand Bend and Ipperwash. As one of her friends noted, Jane was a bit of a renegade AND also the life of every party. Even though hundreds of miles separated her from her school chums, they still were getting together until recently to celebrate their 70+ year friendship.


Jane attended Westervelt College in London and took stenography. She worked in London, Brussels, Peterborough and Campbellford for companies such as 3M, Childrens Aid, Bell Canada and later for Bowes and Cocks Realty and Remax as an executive assistant.


Working hard as a single Mom raising two children in Ennismore, she made many sacrifices during the best years of her life, in order to give her kid’s the best years of theirs. Jane put her kids in hockey, figure skating, baseball, skiing, Scouts, Brownies and Guides. Her kids could not have wanted for more.


Except maybe for store bought fashionable clothing. Jane would learn the art of frugality early on in her working career. She often sewed her own and her kids clothing. Jane honed her talent for looking like a million bucks on a shoe string budget. She rarely paid full price for anything or walked away from a bargain. If you’ve ever had the pleasure of shopping with her, you would see a professional in action at the top of her game. Biway never looked so good. Thanks to Jane, Giant Tiger (the GT Boutique) has never been more profitable.


She never bought a lipstick she didn’t like or a pair of earrings that didn’t sparkle. She had more costume jewellery than Joan Rivers sells on the Shopping Channel. She loved all things sparkly and pretty. From top to bottom she was always so put together, never leaving the house without her makeup or hair done. From her hair to her nails to her shoes and her purses. She was the picture of beauty, class and success.


Except for those Kleenex’s. If you saw Jane, you knew there’d be an errant used Kleenex nearby, usually falling out of her sleeve, sitting on an end table, squished in the car seat, forgotten on the kitchen counter, dropped on the ground. I saw one downtown the other day on my walk and I thought, Mom must have been here.

On that walk I passed by her favourite store; The Wine Barrel. While suggesting my Mom was a wino might be a little harsh, the reality is she did make over 1500 bottles of home made wine since she moved to Campbellford. That’s a lot of wine, that’s a lot of Thursday afternoon Ta’Ta’s with her favourite guys and gals. Those important toddy-therapy sessions were filled with laughter, tears and good times. They never were as cherished as they were this past year. Those days kept her going.


Her life since moving to Campbellford was filled with many blessings. She met so many incredible, loyal friends who have enriched the last 30 years of her life. Jane led a very active lifestyle and had the energy and spunk of someone 20 years her junior. Her days on the Trent were spent enjoying the water, boating, swimming. She loved line dancing and tai chi, golfing in the ladie’s league at Salt Creek, movies, bus trips, live music and theatre. She was the worlds biggest busy body who never missed a good time. As one friend put it, her feet never touched the ground.


Partly because she had a serious case of what the grandkids called FOMO, fear of missing out (lol). As her grandson put it perfectly, Nana was the coolest, she lit up every room she entered and never acted her age. Her grandkids will remember her delicious chocolate chip cookies and muffins, her tuck ins, her riding on jet skis and four wheelers, her techy inability, her famous “Oh for goodness sakes”, her laugh, yelling at Alexa to turn it down, her love of sticky notes, her ability to keep a secret.


Jane was an avid volunteer, giving back to her community through her years with The Lioness Club, Breakfast club of Canada, Horticulture society, The Anglican Church, The Norwood Fair and many more events too numerous to name.


Jane was a cherished Mother and best friend to daughter Allyson (Ray) of Ayr and son Curtis of Cambridge. She was the best fun loving Nana to Jakob and Ava, Hunter, Rourke and Royce, Leslie, Kevin and Rebecca and special Auntie to Ryan and beloved cousin of Bev, Marlene and Joan. She is predeceased by her partner Don Henry, dear brother Jack and many adored family. Jane has been blessed with the love and devotion of so many amazing friends. You know who you are and thank you for everything.


There are no words to describe the incredible care and compassion shown to us by the amazing women who work at The Bridge Hospice in Warkworth, especially Dr. Kelly Parks. They are extraordinary human beings and we would be grateful for your donation to their exceptional home.


Cremation has taken place with Milestone Monuments and Cremation of Napanee.  A Celebration of Jane’s life will be held at the Vimy Room at the Campbellford Legion, drop in from 2-5 on Saturday April 30th.


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