Audrey Marguerite Watson, a resilient, kind, and caring individual, passed away peacefully at the age of 97 in Meaford General Hospital on August 20. She was the last surviving member of the Falls family from Rocklyn. Audrey endured the heartbreaking losses of her children, Robert and Leslie Watson, as well as her husbands, Don Watson and Dave Vaughan. She was also predeceased by her brother Ellwood Falls, her sisters Mylrea Gilchrist and Jeannette Udell/Foster, and stepdaughter Nancy Vaughan.

Audrey’s memory will be cherished for her unwavering resilience in the face of immense sadness, her zest for life, and her compassion for others. She had a timeless and genuine way about her, always maintaining an unyielding interest in the world. Audrey valued her friendships deeply, and even when her dear friends relocated far away, she made a concerted effort to stay in touch.

The eldest child of Stewart and Aulda Falls, Audrey spent her early years on the family farm north of Rocklyn. As a young girl, she eagerly escaped into the pages of books, daydreaming of distant people and places. At 16, Audrey embarked on a journey to Toronto in search of a more exhilarating life. Following the war, she crossed paths with Don Watson, an immigrant from England, and they married, establishing strong ties to the country and forming lifelong friendships. For over 40 years, Audrey resided in her cherished home in The Beach. Despite experiencing the joys of married life, she also faced immense hardships with the successive deaths of her son Robert, husband Don, and daughter Leslie.

Audrey confronted the overwhelming sorrow by channeling her grief into action. In honor of her children, she dedicated herself to assisting others grappling with similar circumstances. After Robert’s passing, Audrey joined Surrey Place, an organization specializing in research and aid for families with mentally disabled children. Serving as a volunteer coordinator, she offered direct support to families enduring the challenges of caring for their children. Following Leslie’s death, Audrey discovered solace through the group work of Bereaved Families, eventually assuming the role of a volunteer group leader. She embarked on a full-time position with the organization, driven by the desire to give back.

Travel became one of Audrey’s greatest passions, as she embarked on global adventures with friends and to visit cherished companions. She fulfilled her childhood dreams by venturing to various locations, with England holding a special place in her heart as a favorite and frequently visited destination. At the age of 60, Audrey embarked on a second chapter in life and found love in Dave Vaughan. Their relationship flourished, leading to a blissful 32-year marriage where they shared a profound love for travel. Florida became their winter retreat for many years, but ultimately, Meaford became their permanent residence. Despite missing her friends in Toronto, Audrey grew even closer to her sister Jeannette and formed numerous new friendships, as was characteristic of her welcoming nature.

Audrey’s life was defined by her resilience, facing heart-wrenching times with a strength many could hardly fathom. Yet, through it all, she maintained a positive outlook and embraced a full life. This is the essence of her legacy. The family extends their gratitude to Dr. Bryan Recoskie, April, the caring nurses and doctors at Meaford Hospital, the supportive friends, particularly Sandy, and the in-home caregivers who ensured Audrey could remain in the comfort of her own home. In accordance with her wishes, Audrey was cremated, and a Celebration of Life will be held at the Meaford Town Hall Galleries on September 11, 2023, from 2 to 4 p.m., with tributes to be shared at 3 p.m. Those who wish to express their condolences may consider making a donation to the Meaford Hospital Foundation or the Bereaved Families of Ontario through the Ferguson Funeral Home, located at 48 Boucher St. E., Meaford, ON N4L 1B9. Additional information is available at http://www.fergusonfuneralhomes.ca.

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