Bartlett, Emelita (Nee Albuerne) April 6, 1945 – April 16, 2014
In 1968, Emily was the first in her family to come to Canada. Emily initially lived in Montreal. While there, she went on a blind date that proved to be wildly successful. It was with George Bartlett. Emily married George in 1973. They complemented each other perfectly. They settled in Toronto and had three children (Stefan, Emelyn, and Christopher).
She was a medical technologist who worked at York Finch Hospital, North York Branson Hospital and Ontario’s Ministry of Health. She became a great friend of many of her co-workers. Emily was self-confident and determined. These traits served her well in her time as President of her union at the Ministry.
Emily was diagnosed with colon cancer in 2007. Not only did she beat it, it facilitated her move to the next stage of her life. She stopped working, which enabled her to dedicate countless hours to the final love of her life, her seven grandchildren (William, Andrew, Benson, Matthew, Chloe, Grace and Charlie).
Emily was diagnosed with uterine cancer in August 2013. She passed away peacefully at home on April 16, 2014.
Memorial service was held at Bloor Street United Church, 300 Bloor St W, where Emily was a member for decades. Online condolences may be left at morleybedford.ca. Emily is loved by her family and friends, and will be tremendously missed by all of them.
The family would like to thank Martha ter Kuile (Minister, Bloor Street United Church) as well as Randi Helmers, the Choir and David Passmore (Director of Music) for their participation in the service.
(Lovingly written by her children Emelyn, Chris and Stefan)
Emily Bartlett (nee Albuerne) was born in 1945 in Camarines Norte in the Philippines. She was the second eldest child of 7. Emily’s parents were not well off, however they were hard working and resourceful thereby ensuring their children were well provided for. The family moved to Manila when Emily was 4 years old in search for greater opportunities.
Emily and her older sister, Minda, were not only sisters but very close friends and because of their positioning in the family became additional caregivers to their younger siblings.
Emily was very outgoing and studious. As teenagers Emily and her sister would work together to earn an allowance. Minda would bake goods and Emily would sell them at a local market. Their mother worked long hours as she was a successful entrepreneur and the girls were responsible for looking after the household chores. While her older sister worked diligently at completing her tasks, Emily decided her skills lay in delegating the rest of the chores to her siblings. Needless to say Emily learned early on the skills of negotiation and leadership that would serve her well later in life.
Emily was a natural extrovert and loved to attend and organize parties. Emily was known to show up at their home with a group of people leaving the rest of the family to scramble to feed and entertain them.
She was also very studious. Emily wished to enter medicine, but because their family could not afford this route she completed as much education as she was able to at the medical college and ended up landing a job as a pharmaceutical rep.
After a year of work Emily longed for more adventure. Her mother often told her and her sisters that they had the potential to do whatever they wanted and frequently encouraged them to shoot for the stars. Emily therefore looked into moving abroad. Her good friend, Esperenza, had already moved to Canada. This, coupled with financial assistance from the family and Emily’s natural self-confidence, resulted in Emily making the move to Canada in 1968. With $100 in her pocket, one friend in Montreal, and an immense amount of courage, Emily flew 24 hours to Canada, a country she had only read about, at the young age of 23. Upon landing she immediately went to work at finding a job and building a social network. Emily started work at St. Anne Hospital in Quebec and then at Royal Victoria Hospital in Montreal.
Emily settled fairly quickly but missed her family. She would soon convince her older sister to join her in Canada and eventually the rest of her family.
Emily and George complemented each other perfectly. Emily was the gas. George was the brakes. Emily was the decisive one. George is more deliberate, perhaps overly so. But he will be the first to tell you that in their relationship the brakes rarely won. “When my Emily had an idea, she did it,” George would say. Yet, she often thought long-term. She and George bought a condo near St. Lawrence Market to be their retirement home over eight years before Emily retired. They built a gorgeous cottage in Muskoka that is one of Emily’s legacies for grandchildren.
Emily was a member of Bloor Street United Church for decades. She contributed to church community over the years, including by organizing a church luncheon after the service once a month. Feeding over a hundred parishioners is not for the faint of heart. Yet Emily volunteered to prepare the food for these luncheons for many years.
The growth and development of her children were major priorities for Emily. Emily considered the successes of her children as her successes.
Emily was diagnosed with colon cancer in 2007. Not only did she beat it, it facilitated her move to the next stage of her life.
She stopped working, ate better and became more physically active. Emily joined a fitness class at the local community centre. Emily was a notoriously slow walker. She would revel in telling family and friends that she was in the “fast” group in the fitness class. She would only then reveal that the three groups in the class were: “fast”, “faster” and “fastest”.
Recovering from cancer enabled her to dedicate countless hours to the final love of her life, her seven grandchildren (William, Andrew, Benson, Matthew, Chloe, Grace and Charlie). Being a grandmother is a role Emily embraced and enjoyed. She constantly repeated that her seven grandkids were her inspiration. She loved spending time with her grandkids and never hesitated to take care of them if her own children were travelling or working.
She looked after her eldest son’s second child, Benson, every weekday afternoon when he was in senior kindergarten. Benson and Emily did everything together. They went shopping together. They made trips to the bank together. Emily even took Ben to the Salon. They were a dynamic duo. Benson sat quietly for numerous hours listening to Emily gossip while they were out for coffee with a work friend or neighbour. Emily loved spending time with her grandchildren and they are all better for it.
Emily was diagnosed with uterine cancer in August 2013. Emily loved, and was loved by her family and many friends. They will all tremendously miss her.