2:00 - 5:00 pm, Saturday June 9, 2018
251 Garafraxa St.
2:00 pm, Sunday June 10, 2018
Garafraxa Hill Funeral Home
January 28, 1939 – June 5, 2018
Walker- Jean Sandra Walker (nee Stoneouse) of Williamsford at age 79. Beloved wife of Gerald Walker, who predeceased her in 2000. She is survived by her children, Connie Graham (Jim) of Waterloo, and David Walker (Kimi) of Oakville. Loving grandma to Cindy Rzepecki (Mike), Jackie and Angie Graham, and Cameron and Jared Walker. Also survived by sisters Marg Rapp (Ron), Rope Turner (Pete) and brother Martin Stoneouse. Predeceased by parents Alex and Lovina (Konold) Stoneouse, and by sisters Bessie Madden and Jessie Hopkins.
Growing up west of Priceville, in Bentinck Township, Jean was very proud of her humble, rural roots. Immediately after graduating high school, she was eligible to take a summer course to get a teaching certificate to begin her teaching career that September at the age of 18. One winter evening driving home from school, she became stuck in the snow. As fate would intervene, a young Gerald Walker stopped and gave her a push out. The two were soon married. With a young family Jean and Gerald inherited the farm south of Williamsford and they both were drawn back into farming. Together they raised a family and worked full time while they farmed a beef cow/calf operation. They always had a retired horse that they would purchase from their friends in the Amish community. There was little down time; now raising Connie and David, Jean continued her own education, obtaining her BA through part-time and summer courses in London. Many in the area will remember her as a popular Grade school teacher at Holland Chatsworth Central School; maybe because of that “loud teacher voice” or maybe because of her joy at yard duty, playing and even tobogganing with the kids at recess. She particularly enjoyed the outside activities such as field trips and was not exactly a by-the-book teacher! Playing also brought competition, and Jean loved to compete at curling, euchre, pepper, cribbage, or crokinole; mercy wasn't in her vocabulary, it didn't matter if you were young or old. After illness struck Gerald in his mid 40s, Jean became the main bread-winner and caregiver. Her strength and independent spirit propelled her through these times. She always had high expectations of others; her children recall it never being a consideration that they not go to university. She was an excellent role model, and became more affectionate as an adult and as a grandmother. She became known as “Crazy Grandma”, enticing the kids to food fights, eating seconds of dessert, placing bets for her at Hanover Raceway, and that electric fence? Go ahead, just grab it! Jean was really not afraid of anything, except water, and she overcame that somewhat to enjoy splashing with the grandchildren, all the while wearing a life jacket and tied off to the dock! The outdoors was always her passion, leaving the domestic chores behind. She was happiest in her garden, or in the barnyard, or on a tractor. After her husband’s death, she was part of a huge network of friends and church groups. Family was of vital importance to Jean. There was never a valid reason to miss a family reunion, Boxing Day, or a family celebration. She loved to travel and visited many parts of the world, including Alaska, Hawaii, Israel, Costa Rica, Japan, Egypt, Bahamas, and many European countries. Even during the quiet times, the buzz of CFOS or the sound of the tv was always in the background. All will miss her drive and competitive spirit, pushing everyone to be their best.
Visitation will be held at the GARAFRAXA HILL FUNERAL HOME, Chatsworth, from 2:00 – 5:00 pm on Saturday June 9, 2018. The funeral service will be held at the funeral home chapel on Sunday June 10, at 2:00 pm, with a visitation one hour prior; Dr. Randy Benson officiating. Reception and luncheon after the service. Interment to follow at Shiloh Cemetery, Chatsworth. If desired, donations to the charity of your choice would be appreciated by the family. Condolences may be expressed online at www.garafraxahillfuneral.com