Obituary of Margaret McLean
November 29, 1922 – July 16, 2019
Margaret died peacefully at Hamilton, Ontario with family at her side. Beloved wife of Richard Alton McLean (2008) of Brampton, Ontario. Dearly loved mother of Marilyn (Karlene), Peter (Karen) and Bruce (Crystal), and proud grandmother of Hannah, Charlotte, Cameron and Malcolm. Margaret and her brother Sidney were raised in the Bayview-Millwood area of Toronto by their recently immigrated parents, Herbert Page of Clacton-on-Sea, England, and Isabella Squair of Stirling, Scotland in a house built by Margaret’s father and uncle. She and Sid grew up surrounded by a legion of older cousins, aunts and uncles who, according to Margaret, were always watching over them.
Margaret loved work. As a student at Northern Secondary in the 1930’s she was strongly influenced by the “career gal” genre of movies featuring favourites such as Katherine Hepburn and Rosalind Russell, and by the time she graduated she was excited to join the growing number of women working in communications and advertising. She held positions at CBC Radio, Gruno Market Research, and McKim Advertising, where she met Richard and also her dear friend Elizabeth Hope. After stepping away from paid employment to focus on motherhood, Margaret worked tirelessly as an advocate for children and their learning through the Association for Children With Learning Disabilities (ACLD), helping to establish the organization’s East York Chapter. In the 1980’s, when many of her peers were retiring, she worked as a volunteer in the office of Bloor Street United Church.
As much as she loved her work, Margaret also believed in the importance of play, particularly at the ocean in Ogunquit, Maine where she and Richard vacationed as often as possible. Play also factored in many of her great loves, including: musical theatre; watching her children play sports; dogs — with Teddy, Charlie and Ripley holding special places in her heart; and rousing board and card games enjoyed with her children, grandchildren and anyone else who might be recruited. She will be fondly remembered and fiercely missed.
Margaret’s family extends our heartfelt thanks to the staff at Parkview Nursing Centre. Interment at Mount Pleasant Cemetery and a gathering of friends and family will take place in the fall. In lieu of flowers a donation can be made to Toronto Rape Crisis Centre, the Stephen Lewis Foundation, or an organization of choice. Condolences may be forwarded through www.humphreymiles.com.