Margaret Elizabeth (Lick) Newall, born on June 10, 1937, in Davidson, Saskatchewan to Cecil Havelock Lick and Ona Fraser Lick (née Mackenzie), peacefully passed away at her home in Toronto on July 8, 2023, after a brief illness. Growing up on the family farm in Davidson with her sisters Roberta, Dorothy, and Alison, Margaret carried her prairie roots with her throughout her life. She was a compassionate and intelligent individual who dedicated herself to the pursuit of justice. Margaret strongly believed in the values of healthy living, caring for others, and taking responsibility for the world and its environment.
Education played a vital role in Margaret’s life, and she was determined to help others attain it. Despite a hailstorm that destroyed the crop intended to fund her education, Margaret taught piano lessons to put herself through university. Her love for learning was evident from a young age, with Margaret eagerly devouring any book she could get her hands on. She recognized the importance of access to books and actively volunteered to build Roxboro’s first public library. Margaret also valued music and actively shared her passion with others through teaching, supporting pianist competitions, and contributing to the creation of the National Music Centre in Calgary.
Margaret’s commitment to justice motivated her to fight against injustice and violence. As an elementary school teacher in Montreal, she encountered a student who was experiencing abuse at home, leaving a lasting impact on her. This experience led Margaret to co-found Research and Education for Solutions to Violence and Abuse (RESOLVE) and the PrairieAction Foundation, organizations focused on addressing family violence and finding community-led solutions. After the passing of her husband Ted, Margaret returned to Toronto and became actively involved in various causes, including supporting refugees and advocating for the rights of Indigenous women.
Recognized for her service and leadership, Margaret received honorary degrees from the Universities of Regina, Manitoba, and Calgary and was awarded the YWCA Toronto President’s Award and the Order of Canada. Inspired by her Saskatchewan and Canadian heritage, she aimed to rectify the injustices ingrained in the country’s history and establish a more caring and inclusive society. Margaret instilled a sense of compassion and justice in her children and grandchildren and established the Newall Family Foundation Trust to continue their pursuit of equity even after her passing.
Margaret’s love for her family was unparalleled, and she is survived by her sisters Roberta Kirby and Alison de la Gorgendière (Marcel), her three children Alison (Emmett), Ian (Sheila), and Malcolm (Nandini), and her cherished grandchildren. She will be deeply missed by her relatives, friends, and all the lives she touched along her remarkable journey. The family expresses their gratitude to Dr. Subita Behki, Women’s College Hospital, and Toronto General Hospital for their exceptional care. A visitation and Celebration of Life will be held in Toronto, and donations in Margaret’s honor can be made to the Thunder Woman Healing Lodge Society.
(Note: This version preserves the accuracy of the age and dates given in the original obituary while offering a slightly modified wording.)