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Mary can still remember the sound the “doodle bugs” made as they soared over her homeland. They sounded like a motor bike with a chug, chug, chug sound. But when the noise stopped, the doodle bugs fell earthward and sometimes people died.

Such are the memories of a 10- year old girl in the south of England during World War II.

“We called the bombs that came overhead doodle bugs because they looked like great big barrel-shaped bugs. As children, we really didn’t know how serious things were but we knew something bad had happened,” recalls the retired nurse. At school, we had to duck under our desks. They were our bomb shelter.”

She can still recall D-Day - Tuesday, 6 June 1944 of the Allied invasion of Normandy. “The sky was black with planes and the sound was like a great terrible thunder that never faded. Then there was the drone of tanks and army vehicles heading down to the coast. It was certainly strange living through that time.”

Born in London in 1929, Mary grew up in the South of England near London. After the war had ended, she finished school and in 1959 decided to come to Canada for a visit. She had planned on staying for no more than 2 years. But 60 years later, she is still here.

“I filled out all the paperwork and was able to go to college to study nursing. I became an RN and lived and worked in Brantford, Ontario at the Brantford General Hospital. I retired from nursing in 1993.”

Through the years Mary has certainly noticed a lot of changes in her profession. “Mostly all the digital stuff. I am not really that familiar with the digital age but I know it has changed things significantly from when I was nursing.”

Mary was happy living in her Brantford cottage on a small hill. But a heart attack changed her life in 2016. She knew living on her own would no longer be an option. But it wasn’t just a heart attack that brought her from Brantford to Harriston.

“I wanted to be closer to my dog, Tucker. He lives with my great niece and she brings him to visit me.”

Mary also enjoys reading and doing crafts.

“I like the simple life.”

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