Wilfred Frederick Dove
We, the family of Wilfred Fredrick Dove, are devastated to announce his passing on Tuesday, March 14, 2023, at Northside General Hospital, surrounded by his loving daughters.
Born in Sydney Mines on December 27, 1939, Wilfred was the son of the late Richard and Elizabeth (Ludlow) Dove. Wilfred began working at the very young age of thirteen; working with Wharton Ross Farming for six years. He would affectionately refer to this as “Ross’s Farm” and reflected back upon his time working there quite often, as he told his children stories of his time there. Always a hard-working man who was never deterred by a challenge, Wilfred would go on to work at several different jobs including Nickerson’s Fish Plant, and the construction of the Seal Island Bridge. The working conditions of this construction were unfathomable to envision by today’s safety standards, but he would never turn down any opportunity to work and provide for his family. Dad also worked as a Stevedore with Marine Atlantic for several years. He would often tell stories of the many humorous events that occurred during his shifts, and recall fond memories of the wonderful friendships he formed there. Dad was also working the night the Patrick Morris sank, while on a rescue mission, and the sadness of the event was as vivid to him through the years as it was on that dreadful night.
A true master of everything, Dad was the “go-to” for family and friends any time they needed anything, whether it was mechanical work on vehicles, fixing just about anything, running errands, completing income tax returns and providing the soundest advice, no matter the subject. Always calm and gentle, Dad would always make us feel that we could accomplish anything, telling us that “Today is the tomorrow you worried about yesterday.” And he was always right.
Dad was an avid hunter who was most at home in the woods. He began hunting as a young boy with his father and his brothers, and would continue to hunt until his health prevented him from doing so just a few short years ago. He also enjoyed fishing and passing on his love of the outdoors to his children, taking us on many fishing trips. We never caught any “big ones”, but the memories he gave us were the greatest catch of all.
Dad was a dedicated and loyal Toronto Maple Leafs and Blue Jays fan, and played baseball in his younger years with the Tobin Road Hawks and Bras d’Or Combines. Despite his health struggles, which began when he was only 37 years old, Dad had an unwavering sense of humour. Every conversation would have us laughing as he recounted stories of the past or present events. We would often refer to some of his comments as “time-release” jokes, as it could be hours or days later when we would recall something he had said and start laughing uncontrollably.
More than anything Dad was a true and dedicated family man. Dad and Mom would have been celebrating their 62nd year of marriage on April 6th of this year. Their years together brought them so much joy, despite the struggles of raising a family of seven children during very harsh economic times, and the devastation of losing their precious son. We never knew the word “No,” and Dad and Mom would sacrifice anything for themselves to ensure that we had everything. Mom, Dad loved you, and all of us with all of his heart, and we can take comfort in knowing that in Dad we had the most wonderful husband and father, and we were truly blessed to have him for as long as we did, although it feels like not nearly long enough.
Dad is survived by his loving wife Victoria; his children Debi (Vic) Power, Wilfred (Susan) Dove, Nancy Dove, Betty (Dwayne) Fudge, Sheila (Alex) Russell, Stephen (Amanda) Dove, along with daughter-in-law, Tracy Dove. Also surviving, are his brothers Melvin (Patsy) Dove, Clarence (Yvonne) Dove, and sister Diane. Dad is also survived by a number of grandchildren: Joey Barry, John and Jacob Dove, James and Haley Power, Christopher and Ryan Young, Sarah LeBlanc-Dove, Richard and Cynthia MacMullin, Madison, Abby and Gracie Dove, Avery, Gabriel and Daniel Dove; step-grandchildren Kaileigh, Caside and Erica, and his special little “boo-bop,” his great-granddaughter, Kyla LeBlanc.
Besides his parents, he was predeceased by his loving son Glenn, grandson Mark, brothers Richard Jr, Lloyd, Allister, and sisters Floss and Judy, as well as special sister-in-law and buddy Sheila LeMoine.
There are so many people that we would like to thank for all of the care and support offered to Dad over the past few years. To our Mom, we can never express deeply enough our gratitude for the care you provided to our Father, which allowed him to remain at home. Dad was so grateful for everything you did for him, as are we. To Dad’s brother Melvin (Mosey) and wife Patsy, there are not enough words to express how much we appreciate all of the help you provided to Dad and Mom. Dad would not have been able to continue to go hunting if it had not been for you, and he loved you so dearly. You both gave your time and your hearts so selflessly to help Dad and Mom, and we will be eternally grateful. Mosey, you and Dad share a bond that can never be lost. Dad and Mom also wanted to express their sincere thanks to their son-in-law Alex Russell, for all of the care and help you have offered to them these past few years. It is truly appreciated. We would also like to extend our thanks to Heather and the beautiful angels from Northside Homemakers, whose visits always brightened Dad and Mom’s days. To Crystal with Continuing Care for all of the support you were able to put in place to help Dad. To the Nurses of 5 East and 4 West of the Northside General Hospital for the care you provided to our Father and to us, and to Drs. Alex Wawer and Doug Kohlsmith.
Dad, never will a day pass where we will not miss your gentle voice, your caring words, and your ability to bring sunshine despite the darkest of days. The mold was truly broken when God created you, and there is so much truth in the expression that “they just don’t make them like you anymore”.
Thank you Dad for all of the hard work, sacrifices and tremendous love you have given us. Our every success in life is because of you and we will continue to see and feel your presence and your love every time we look at our children and grandchildren, as we watch them succeed in life, and know that you are still with us, every step of the way.
A visitation for Wilfred will be held from 1 - 3 pm on Saturday, March 18 at W.J. Dooley Funeral Home, 107 Pleasant St. North Sydney. A funeral service will follow immediately in the funeral home chapel with Rev. Ritchie Robinson officiating. Burial will take place at Lakeside Cemetery at a later date. Online condolences can be left for the family by visiting the tribute wall of the obituary page for Wilfred at www.wjdooley.com.
We love you Dad
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