Obituary of Elizabeth Nora Schollen
Elizabeth (Nora) Schollen
August 8, 1931-January 12, 2024
“Though she be but little, she is fierce.” William Shakespeare
Our “tiny dancer” passed away peacefully with her family by her side at Glynnwood Retirement
Residence on Friday, January 12, 2024. Married to Dad for 72 years, Mom is once again in the arms of
the love of her life, Ed Schollen, who left us on August 31, 2023. She is survived by her six children:
Robin (Mike) Bethke, Nancy (Pat) McCoy, Laurel Schollen (Craig Kurysh), Brad (Stephanie) Schollen, Mark
(Cheryl) Schollen, Marci (Eric) Nicolaisen and her 15 grandchildren; Hollie, Lindsey (Markus), Kim
(Melanie), Mary (James), Jennifer, (Tim), Courtney (Justin), Leyah, Christopher S., Scott (Taylor), Chris K.,
Cameron, Carlee, Nicole, Matthew, and Julia, and two great-granddaughters, Madison and Sienna.
Mom was an extraordinary woman with an infectious zest for life. Mom loved to host family
celebrations and made sure they were filled with fun, laughter, great conversation and amazing food.
She was an excellent baker and cook. Our mouths still water just thinking about her sticky chicken wings
and manicotti. We will always remember her desserts, some favourites being her world-famous
brownies and her rice pudding. Thanks to Mom, all of us turned out to be great cooks, too, and just like
Mom, we use a recipe as a guide, not a rule.
Mom loved a good party. She danced the twist lower and longer than anyone in the family. And who can
forget her yearly challenge of putting her leg up on the kitchen counter. Every grandchild was amazed
that grandma could lift her leg so high!
Mom’s motto was “Busy hands are happy hands”. She was always on the move, prompted by a list of
things that needed to be done. We sometimes wonder if Mom ever really “relaxed”. She loved people
and was happiest when she was in the company of others. Throughout her life, she looked forward to
going out with friends, playing card games with neighbours, visiting with grandchildren, and travelling
with family and friends. There wasn’t a day that went by without a walk. We can still hear her asking
Dad the question, “Where will we go today, dear?” Mom had an inner urge to “get out of the house”
and as kids, she often told us, “You need to go outside for some fresh air.” And we did...until the
streetlights came on or the whistle was blown to summon us home for dinner. Thanks to Mom and Dad,
we are a family of walkers, hikers, bikers, campers, and travellers.
Mom was a lifelong volunteer and a dedicated school secretary with the TCDSB. Mom had a quick wit
and a wonderful sense of humour. She never missed an opportunity to tease a smile out of someone.
She was loved by many. Nearly 30 years after retirement, colleagues share stories about Nora and how
much she meant to them.
Mom had an indomitable spirit that seemed to grow stronger with each passing year. Her feisty
personality, her determination, and her belief that she could overcome almost anything was her
superpower. Mom faced many hurdles in her life. As a young mother of four, she left family and friends
in B.C. and made a new home with Dad in Saskatchewan. Three years later, with a new baby in tow, the
family moved to Scarborough. Here, five children became six, and the family was complete. Dad
travelled often for business. Mom literally raised the family on her own with the help of her trusty
slipper to maintain law and order.
Mom fought cancer three times: in her fifties, in her seventies and in her eighties. The doubters said that
she wouldn’t overcome these dire setbacks, but she always proved them wrong. She seemed almost
invincible. It was only after Dad’s death that the glimmer in her eyes began to dim.
Mom, you taught us how to handle whatever comes our way with grace and courage. Mom, Grandma,
Gigi, you were everything to your family. Your spirit and your joy for life live on inside each one of us.
We miss you desperately, Mom, but we know that you are happy once again, holding hands with Dad as
you continue your journey together, asking once again, “Where will we go today, dear?”.
We will have a celebration of Mom’s life in the spring. Online condolences can be left at the Dixon-Garland
Funeral Home website under "Tribute Wall". As Mom was a three-time cancer survivor, in lieu of flowers please direct
donations to the Canadian Cancer Society.