Ford, Mary Eva
Inducted: November 28, 1990
Mary Eva Ford, of Muirkirk, had a busy and productive life dedicated to her home, the community and the interests of farmers and farm women.
Mrs. Ford was born in Muirkirk, daughter of Eva and Alexander McDonald; and attended Duart Public School and Highgate Continuation School. To get her senior matriculation at Dutton, it was necessary, at a time before school buses, to travel to school on the train, an experience shared by some other rural students anxious to further their education.
Mrs. Ford combined a working career with heavy responsibilities in the home, community and organizations. She worked full-time at the Orford Farmers' Co-operative in Muirkirk from 1946-1956; then became a medical secretary for Dr. J. R. MacPherson of Duart. It was while she was working in the office of this busy east Kent general practitioner that she decided to earn a diploma as a Medical Secretary, and received some of the highest marks in that course.
Mrs. Ford was a member of the Muirkirk Women's Institute for 55 years, and active in all Institute projects. Her association with farmers in the Co operative and in the doctor's office brought her closer in touch with farm problems, an interest carried over into her Institute concerns.
Her practical approach was illustrated by her work to persuade farmers and seed corn companies to provide toilet facilities for young seed corn detasselers in the fields.
Mrs. Ford was the community historian, and the author of the 100-year history of Duart Church, and she helped in the preparation of a number of school anniversary histories. She served for six years as a member of the Board of the Four Counties General Hospital; was active in the Kent Genealogy Society and the Cancer Society; and was Chairman of the Duart Cemetery survey.
In her long membership in Duart Presbyterian Church, she was a choir member for 40 years, and held all offices in women’s organizations there. She was an authority on antiques.
Mrs. Ford was a busy woman, but her prime focus was always her sons, Alexander of Edmonton and Francis of Ridgetown, her five grandchildren, and four great-grandchildren.
One of the people who knew her best said, "Wherever there was community work needed--suppers, pageants, plays--this lady was there."