STAIRS, Dorothy Helena January 20, 1927 - October 8, 2016 With heavy hearts, the family of Dorothy Helena Stairs announces that her long life has ended. Dorothy was predeceased by her parents Rachel Webb and Denis Stairs, brothers George, Denis, Colin and Gavin, and one nephew, Arthur. She is survived by her sister Elizabeth Durnford, 17 nieces and nephews, their children and grandchildren. Her family will miss her, as will many others around the world touched by her kindness and selfless generosity. Dorothy grew up in Westmount and was educated in Montreal, New Brunswick and Switzerland. She trained as a nurse at the Montreal General Hospital School of Nursing, specializing in premature infant care. In 1953 she was presented to Queen Elizabeth ll at a Buckingham Palace Coronation celebration. Polio left its mark, yet she never allowed this to slow her down. In the early 1960s a long and enduring connection to India began when she volunteered at Vellore hospital and became fast friends with Bishop Sundar Clark of Madras. Dorothy loved to sing and was a member of the Church of St. Andrew and St. Paul choir into her seventies. Contributing to the Church was important to her and she ran the Meals on Wheels program with ruthless efficiency for many years. Dorothy believed very strongly in helping others help themselves, and the many ways in which she gave of herself was officially recognized in 2012 when she was awarded the Queen's Diamond Jubilee Medal. Among the charities closest to her heart: The Leprosy Mission, The Salvation Army, Cheshire Foundation, Montreal Children's Hospital, Operation Eyesight, Camp Amy Molson, CUSO, Old Brewery Mission, and Presbyterian World Service and Development. A funeral service will be held at 11 a.m. on Friday, October 14, 2016 at the Church of St. Andrew and St. Paul, 3415 Redpath St., Montreal. Reception to follow. In lieu of flowers, please consider supporting the aforementioned charities.
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