Death Notices – July 2018


Published July 4, 2018

Val Hart
HART, Valentina Jane.
It is with profound sadness that I announce the passing of my beloved wife, Valentina (Val) Jane Hart, after a stubborn battle over the past five months. Val died peacefully, surrounded by her loving family, at home, overlooking her garden full of birds and chipmunks.
Val was born in Wasserburg am Inn, Germany, on January 27, 1947, the daughter of Anna and Basil Smirnow. Val, along with her parents and grandparents, emigrated to Canada in 1953, settling in Beamsville. Val completed her education at the University of Guelph, obtaining a degree in Russian Literature, and then a Masters degree in Education at the University of Toronto. She had a wonderful career in Education spanning three decades, retiring as Vice-Principal of Little Current Public School on Manitoulin Island.
Predeceased by first husband, Victor Lysenko (1991), Val and I began our twenty-year adventure in 1998. Together, we shared wonderful experiences exploring Australia, New Zealand, the Caribbean, Central America, and especially Newfoundland. Among other talents, Val was an accomplished gardener, carpenter, camper and seamstress. She also baked incredibly over-proof Christmas rum-balls that were almost flammable.
Val was a ‘whisperer’ to all animals, particularly to a flock of sheep during a vacation in New Zealand. The locals are no doubt still talking about the Canadian sheep whisperer.
Val was a grandmother extraordinaire, and she was more than just a little involved in their lives. She was an encyclopedia of information and craft ideas for school projects, and she loved to jump in the pool with them when they were little. Val also enjoyed a good wrestle on the kitchen floor, and she was a fierce opponent during an animated sword fight in the family room. Recognizing the importance of other life skills, Val taught both grandchildren to play a mean game of poker at an early age.
Val leaves behind her brother Nicholas (Diana). Val will be missed and lovingly remembered by her husband Don, stepdaughters Jane (John Easson), Sally, and her beloved grandchildren, Sarah and Andrew. As per Val’s wish, there will be no visitation nor funeral. A Celebration of Val’s Life will be held at a later date. In memory of Val, please feel free to donate to the charity of your choice. Arrangements have been entrusted to Thompson Waters Funeral Home, (519-583-1530). On-line donations and or condolences can be made at

Elva Mildred Hoover
HOOVER, Elva Mildred. Peacefully at Norfolk General Hospital on Sunday, July 1, 2018. Beloved wife for 72 years of Ross Clinton Hoover. Loving mother of Linda (Ben) Woodruff, Melody (Lloyd) Smith both of Port Dover and the late Darlene May Hoover. Dear sister of Ruth (late Russell), Dennis of Simcoe and the late Vera (Bill) Yager, Earl (Edith) Schweyer, Hazel (John) Werner, Grace (Grant) Lindsay, Ralph (Frieda) Schweyer, Clifford and Rita Schweyer. Cherished grandmother of Rodney (Cindy) Rushton, Brad (Twila) Smith and Angela Smith (Blake) and proud great grandmother of Shelby Rushton, Clayton and Violet Smith. Sister-in-law of Doris (late Floyd) Held, Joan (Don) Sherk and Milton (Sharen) Hoover and the late Madelene (Allan) Clarke. Special aunt to many nieces and nephews. Friends are invited to call at Cooper Funeral Home, 19 Talbot Street West, Jarvis, on Wednesday from 5:00 – 8:00 p.m. A Funeral Service to celebrate the life of Elva will be held at Selkirk Christian Chapel, 20 Erie St. N., Selkirk on Thursday at 2:00 p.m. Interment to follow at Selkirk Union Cemetery. Donations to Ontario Christian Assembly Camp or charity of your choice would be appreciated by the family. Friends are invited to send condolences and sign the Book of Memories at

Dr. Nancy Merritt
MERRITT, Dr. Nancy Isabel (nee Smith)
Dr. Nancy “Moo” Smith Merritt died peacefully at home on June 27, 2018, holding her daughters’ hands and surrounded by loving family. Survived by her husband, Dr. Richard Merritt and two daughters, Tiffany Merritt (Eric Partington) and Susannah Merritt (Jonathan Link), she was the adored “Gammy” of Oscar, Althea, Alec and Mavis. She is also survived by her dear siblings Monte Smith (Rose Marie), Joan Smith and her sister-in-law, Susan Merritt (Cameron Williams, deceased). Her extended family included nieces and nephews, Brian Smith, Catherine and Blake Williams and many cousins. Her life was enriched by her Aunt Isabel Powell and Uncle Jim Cruise.
Nancy was born in 1944 and raised on a farm near Port Dover, schooled locally and graduated from School of Medicine at Queen’s University, Kingston. Her ophthalmological career spanned thirty-seven years in both Niagara-on-the-Lake and Niagara Falls.
Her interests were family and friends, travel, skiing, hiking, swimming, Book Club and “general tinkering,” but her real passion was for her daughters and in her later years, her beloved grandchildren.
Nancy and her family are forever grateful to her medical team, especially Dr. Al Covens, Dr. Gill Thomas, Dr. Xin Chong and Dr. John Taliano.
Cremation has taken place and a Celebration of her Life will occur in late summer, 2018. In lieu of flowers, please donate to Odette Cancer Centre at Sunnybrook Hospital (, Princess Margaret Hospital ( and Pathstone Children’s Mental Health (
Arrangements entrusted to Considerate Cremation & Burial Services, 52 Scott Street West, St. Catharines (between Ontario Street and South Service Road), 289-362-1144. Online condolences may be made at


Published July 11, 2018

Joan Clapp
CLAPP, Joan Elaine (nee Cameron) passed peacefully in her 94th year at her home in Simcoe. Beloved wife of the late Ross Clapp (2016). Loving mother of Cari Barrett (Toby) of Port Dover. Cherished Noni to Shawn (Fern), Brittany (Chris), and the late Brett (2016). Special great-grandmother to Trent and Brock. Dear sister to the late Beth Lawrence and her husband Ken.
Joan was an active, long-time member of the Simcoe Kinettes, Simcoe Curling Club, and the Norfolk Golf and Country Club.
At Joan’s request an interment and private ceremony will be held with the immediate family. If so desired, donations may be made in Joan’s memory to a charity of one’s choice.

Gerry Swarts
SWARTS, Gerald Charles (October 3, 1939 – June 30, 2018). Gerry passed peacefully at home on June 30, 2018, surrounded by his loving family after a hard fought battle with cancer. Survived by his beloved wife of 58 years Carol (Hawke) and his two sons Shawn (Samantha Norval) and Chris (Tina Tilbury) and the late Shannon (Doug Graham); the loving Poppa of Zachary, Chase, Haven, Marley, Isaijah, Logan and the late Lucas. Also survived by brothers Keith (Donna), Glen (Paulie), Brian, Ron (Cathy), and sister Marilyn (Cooper).
Gerry was born in 1939 and raised on a farm near Nanticoke. Always hard working, he managed two plants building trailers, then went to the American Can, then Ontario Hydro, and finally at the lift bridge in Port Dover. An avid sportsman, he was known for his years of refereeing hockey and umpiring baseball. He was an original member of the Port Dover Oldtimers’ Hockey Team and played for them for many years. His biggest passion was for the game of golf which he played whenever possible, including making his own clubs!
Throughout his life his focus was always on his family, always there to help with any job or repair and always at the sports games of his children and grandchildren. His happy smile and cheerful nature will be sadly missed by all who knew him.
Cremation has taken place and a Celebration of Gerry’s Life will occur Tuesday, August 7, 2018 from 6 to 9 p.m. at the Port Dover Community Centre. In lieu of flowers, please donate to Port Dover Minor Hockey or Port Dover Minor Baseball.


Published July 18, 2018

Emmett Biggar
BIGGAR, Emmett Allen. It is with profound sadness that we announce the peaceful passing of Emmett while holding hands with his wife, who never left his side, at the Brantford General Hospital in Brantford on Saturday July 7, 2018. Emmett was in his 77th year. Emmett was born in Tyne Valley, P.E.I. to the late Johnny and Ruby (Murphy) Biggar. Beloved soulmate of Deletra (Milligan) Biggar. Emmett loved his music, hockey and spending time at his trailer. He met a lot of people along the way and will be sadly missed by all. Emmett leaves to mourn his daughters Roxanne, Pam and Kimberley. Also lovingly remembered by his six grandchildren: Joel, Stephanie, Derek, Dylan, Jessica and Jacob. Emmett was also a very proud great-grandfather of Scarlett, Wyatt and Hayes. Survived by his brothers and sister Billy, Bruce and Sherry Bujold; brother in-law Edgar Williams, sister in-law Carol Gallant and Aunt Elga Ramsay. Besides his parents, Emmett was predeceased by his sisters Kay (Jim) Morrison, Anita Hanley, Joyce Williams, Judy Biggar (in infancy) and brother Jackie. A Celebration of Life will take place in Tyne Valley, PEI at a later date. In lieu of flowers, memorial donations in Emmett’s memory can be made to the Brantford General Hospital or charity of your choice. You can call Brantford General Hospital direct 519-751-5510 or online at Condolences can be sent to


Published July 25, 2018

Irvine Donald
DONALD, Irvine John – The family announces that Irv had “death by chocolate” after battling many years of illness. Irvine passed at his home in his bed while surrounded by his loving wife and three children at age sixty-three. Beloved husband of Denise, loving father of David, Laryssa, and J.J., father-in-law of Devin Cinarlili and dear brother of Allan and Steve. Irvine will be missed by his many extended family and friends. Irv was known for his sense of humour, his generosity, and his love for chocolate. Friends were invited to join the family at the Harbour Museum Park in Port Dover on Friday, July 20, 2018 at 7 p.m. South Coast Funeral and Cremation Alternatives in care of arrangements. Those wishing to make a donation in Irv’s memory are asked to consider the Diabetic Association.

Ken Simpson
SIMPSON, Kenneth of Port Dover, passed away peacefully on Wednesday, July 18, 2018 in his 80th year. Predeceased by his wife Carrol (2014). Cherished father and father-in-law of Teresa Simpson-Nasser (Adam Nasser), Shelley Shuttleworth (Grant Shuttleworth) and Kendra Simpson-Barnes (Jim Barnes). Dearly loved grandfather of Kali, Olen, James, David, Ketara, Kurseena, Kyra, Matthew, Griffin, Brooklyn, Addison and Avaiah, great-grandfather of seven. Dear brother of Roger Simpson, Lou VanSickle and Jean Woolley. Predeceased by his parents Don and Mary, sister-in-law Marge Simpson, and brothers-in-law Jim VanSickle and Robert Woolley. Ken was a 50-year member of the Masonic Lodge – Erie #149 and was a Past Master, he was also a past member of the Kinsmen Club. Ken worked his whole career as an electrician. He will be sadly missed by all who knew him. Friends are invited to meet with the family to share their memories of Ken at Thompson Waters Funeral Home, 102 First Ave., Port Dover (519-583-1530) on Sunday, July 22, 2018, 2-4 p.m. and 7-9 p.m. A Masonic Service will be held at 6:30 p.m. A Service to Celebrate Ken’s life will be held at Grace United Church (Chapman and St. George Streets) on Monday, July 23, 2018 at 11 a.m, The Reverend Kathryn Vance officiating. Cremation to follow. For those wishing, donations to Grace United Church or the Masonic Lodge – Erie #149 would be greatly appreciated. On-line donations and/or condolences can be made at


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