Obituary of Dr. Maret Truuvert
May 19th, 1929 – September 4th, 2021
After a long, full life, Maret Truuvert passed away peacefully on September 4th, 2021, at the age of 92. She was at home, with family by her side.
She will be missed by many, especially by her brother, Toomas (Maris); her children, Andres (Fiamma), Liis (Arnold), and Kaarel (Ruth); her grandchildren, Trina (Greg), Kristin (Scott), Taavo, Markus, Sara, Annie, Alexander, and Michael; and her great-grandchildren, Ian, Maeve, Hewitt, Charlie, and Alexandra. She is predeceased by her husband, Antoni “Ants” Truuvert, her daughter Piret, son-in-law Ian, and her companion and fellow traveler for many years, Edgar Marten.
Maret was born in Estonia and fled with her family to Sweden ahead of the Soviet invasion during World War II. Although only fifteen years old and with little to her name, she adapted quickly and cheerfully, learning Swedish and English, and excelled in high school and at Stockholm University where she began her studies in dentistry. She met and married Antoni and gave birth to Piret. The young family then took another bold step and emigrated to Canada to build a new life from almost nothing.
A pioneer in the field of dentistry, Maret was the first woman to study postgraduate Paediatric Dentistry at the University of Toronto and was among the first Estonian-speaking dentists to practise in Toronto. Maret established a family dental practice first in her own home and then in Bloor West Village and lectured as an Assistant Professor of Preventative Dentistry at the University of Toronto. She received from the University in 1999 an Alumni Award in Dentistry. She was also a member of the esteemed International College of Dentists and an Honourary Member of the Canadian Association of Paediatric Dentistry.
Maret was an integral member of the Estonian community, in Estonia and in Canada. She improved dentistry standards in newly freed Estonia and became a partner and teacher at a dental clinic in Pärnu. In collaboration with the Estonian Medical Sciences Association, she hosted doctors, dentists, and dental technicians in her home. She also facilitated English studies for visiting officers from the Estonian military, acted as Chairperson of the Board of St. Peter’s Estonian Evangelical Lutheran Church of Toronto, and volunteered with the Women’s Auxiliary. In addition to the honours she received from the Estonian military for her work with language students, Maret received The Red Cross Medal of Estonia for her humanitarian work.
But those who were lucky enough to have known Maret will likely remember her for her bright spirit, her fierce intelligence, and her enduring sense of humour. She was often characterized as “the glue that holds the family together” and “Grand Central Station”, connecting everybody. For decades, she kept in touch with family, friends, and colleagues, writing letters and emails. She put others before herself with kindness and gusto. Whether she was tending to a patient in her dental chair, touring Estonian officers around Toronto, or baking one of her legendary birthday cakes to take across town to the lucky recipient, Maret took care of everyone. Throughout her life, she was a model of strength and of love.
A private service will take place with immediate family. A remembrance will occur at a later date. In lieu of flowers, please consider donating to the Estonian Foundation of Canada, SickKids, St. Peter’s Estonian Evangelical Lutheran Church of Toronto, or a charity of your choice.
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