Kenneth Marshall

Jim “Kenneth James” Marshall

Tuesday, July 8th, 1930 - Thursday, January 2nd, 2020
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July 8, 1930 –Jan. 2, 2020

A bright light went out in our family’s life when Jim passed away peacefully at the age of 89, with family
by his side. He was bigger than life and filled up a room with his smile and laughter. He could keep you
entertained for hours with his stories of his adventurous, challenging and rewarding life. He is
predeceased by his cherished wife Meryl. Devoted and loving father to his children, Lori Kartes (Rob), Don (Darlene), and Wendy. Proud and adored Papa to Jocelyn, Avery, Brendan and Greg Kartes, Shelby, Cameron and Brady Marshall, Tyler and Kayla Fitch. A special thank you to the nurses and doctors at St. Vincent’s Hospital and Ottawa Hospital, Civic Campus (5 th floor and AMA Unit) for their passionate care and support. A private service was held on Friday, August 28th. In memoriam donations to Queensway-Carleton Hospital Foundation’s Hopes Rising Campaign or another charity of your choice would be appreciated.

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Private Condolence

Steve L

Posted at 07:35pm
Oh Jim...
Just when the world needs more of the good humor and optimism you always showed.
Farewell friend.
Say hello to Meryll for me.


Lisa Marshall

Posted at 03:50pm
A few words for Uncle Jim

Like everyone, our family would have loved to attend this commemoration in person. But like everyone, our freedom of movement has been greatly reduced this year. The one startling advantage is that wherever we all are, we can attend Uncle Jim’s memorial service online.
Uncle Jim. Where to begin? Growing up in Durham, I remember him as a flurry of activity. Hunting, fishing, coaching baseball. Owner of two statuesque hunting dogs if I recall correctly, a blue tic and a pointer – those dogs could hunt. And Uncle Jim, born and raised in the city, shaped my own family’s fate by bringing my father and our family from Toronto also to Durham, where together the two brothers worked at the Abitibi factory and raised their families in that small but lovely town, surrounded by hills and endless countryside.
I’ll always remember Uncle Jim’s jokes, his endless hospitality, his love of children, of nature, of life. A troupe of cousins swinging off a rope hung to a tree branch and falling into the murky waters of the Saugeen River which wound through his cottage property. Him taking us skating on the frozen pond turned ice rink, teaching us kids silly songs, joking with my little sister Tina, calling her “Tina no b_m”, “Who stole your b_m, Tina no b_m?” And her toddling and circling about, perhaps about three years old, trying to find it.
Time and circumstances separated our families, as they do, eventually, most families. We stayed in Durham while Jim, Meryl, Lori, Don and Wendy moved to Lindsay, then Ottawa. One of the best things, years later, about attending university in Ottawa was reconnecting with my relatives. I spent my first month living at Uncle Jim and Aunt Meryl’s. The years I hadn’t seen them dissolved in a day enveloped in their warm household. Playing Scrabble together, eating his famous pancakes and enjoying all the same old jokes and songs. It was wonderful being surrounded by family when everything else was so new and challenging. He packed me a lunch every single day that month, a gesture I will never forget and so telling of his careful attention and his sweetness.
Even in his later years, my uncle continued to live life to its fullest, sharing stories of his family, his grandkids, his buddy Joe (who he set on more than a few adventures with).
I am glad that I made the time to visit him in Ottawa the two times I went back these last four years. My kids remember him fondly as the very health-oriented old man with the wind generator-exercise bike that they could monkey around on and not get yelled at. I am also grateful that he could come down all the way to Chesley, Ontario with his daughters and son-in-law to mark the grand occasion of my parents 50th wedding anniversary.
I could go on for a long time, but I will end this little eulogy by drawing on those last visits I had with Uncle Jim. Sitting with him, I learned a few valuable lessons about something almost all of us fear, perhaps even more than disease itself, old age.
He taught me first of all, the value of stubbornness, or what could be called fortitude or tenacity in one’s senior years. When Uncle Jim went into a nursing home a few years back, after some time there, he told me “I realized that I wanted out of there. This was no place for me.” So he left. I had never heard of anyone moving into a nursing home and coming out of it, not only alive, but insistent to live on his own. I am certain that his kids know all the fine details, but seeing him seated at his own kitchen table, living in his own apartment, and cherishing that independence regardless the challenges, showed that he was making the most of the time he had left, and had struck out on his own at age 80 something.
The second thing he taught me was about the importance of loving. Uncle Jim had a lot of stories about living in his apartment high rise on Carling Avenue. In fact, it sounded like a veritable Melrose Place. The lady with eight kids that would always ask him to carry her groceries and then invite herself over. “Yeah, I think she likes me” Uncle Jim confessed. “To tell you the truth, she’s nice, but there’s another widower that lives in the building and well…she really has got something this one. I could really fall for her.”
I was rather shocked by his candour but after that, actually amazed, and inquisitive. “You mean, Uncle Jim, you could fall in love with her. Really? At your age?”
“Sweetie. Let me tell you something. You can fall in love at any age” he replied.
I told that story to a lot of people. It made me think a lot about old age and loss and our misconceptions about so many matters of the heart in our youth-oriented culture. Certainly, I don’t think there was a day in his life that he didn’t think of Aunt Meryl. But what he said shows us that love, and the ability to open one’s heart during the entire course of an existence, to move forward and to love fully and deeply, whether it be romantic or familial or love in whatever shape or form, is what life is really all about. And it is about as powerful a panacea to all that life throws at us as anything out there.
I’ll miss him.

Joce Lyn

Posted at 03:20pm
My grandparents home was my refuge growing up and I always felt safe and loved in their presence. I had the opportunity to forge very close bonds with both my papa and nana and to create so many beautiful memories together.

I cherish the memories of our adventures through the forest, our many sleepovers, the many magical christmases we spent together, and the many Remembrance Day ceremonies that we attended. As I grew up, I also came to appreciate the fact that we had many similar experiences in our formative years.

I love him and I will miss him, although I know that his legacy lives on through all of his children and grandchildren. I think of the warmth, acceptance, and love I felt in my grandparents' home when I meditate and try to cultivate inner peace. I also think of what important sources of love and guidance they both were when I look out my window to the mountains in my new home of Switzerland. The mountains remind me of the picture that hung on the living room wall, giving me a clue of what lied ahead.

Kayla Fitch

Posted at 08:19am
My heart is very heavy to lose my Papa, but I am thankful he had a long full life and for all the time I had with him. My Nana and Papa were a big part of my childhood. I enjoyed many times outdoors with my Papa, and fondly remember movie nights with him, my Nana and brother. When my Nana passed 6 years ago and my Papa moved out of that house; that was a new chapter of our relationship. Growing up my Papa was the tough guy and used to tell me not to cry, but after the loss of my Nana I saw how softened he became to life. Especially in the last few years, he would be so touched by acts of kindness that he would be moved to tears, and the thought of my Nana would also make him cry instantly. My favourite picture of him is from this Christmas when he was crying grateful tears for being gifted a new watch. He was so thankful for all those little moments. As a 22 year old, it feels as if time keeps speeding up; the years get faster and faster and it gets easier to miss the beauty in each moment. But it is as if in my Papa’s last year life truly slowed down; he knew every moment was important and significant and big. When death isn’t on your horizon, it can be easy to miss the power of all these little moments and interactions strung together. But, they really do mean so much. ❤️

Wendy Marshall

Posted at 09:58am
I so fondly remember my Dad and I holding hands and skipping along singing “were off to see the wizard...the wonderful wizard of Oz!”. What a beautiful memory!!

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