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John Ambrose Doris,
With heavy yet grateful hearts, we announce the passing of our beloved husband, father, poppa and friend, Jack “Lefty” Doris, who passed away peacefully, surrounded by his family, on March 4, 2023 in his 93rd year.
Jack is survived by his best friend and cherished wife of 72 years, Sheila (nee Grady). Jack’s kindness, positivity and generosity-of-spirit are indelibly etched in the memories and personas of his six daughters, Ann Farlow (Bruce), Mary Doris, Colleen Angevaare (Terry), Jacqueline Wells, Kelly O’Meara (John) and Liz Doris-Northey (Randy); his 15 grandchildren, Emily (Luke), Alison (Andrew), Monica, Meghan (Joe), Michael (Lindsay), John (Sarah), Paul, Mark (Kelsey), Krista (Frank), Adam (Kristin), Emma, Hannah (Evan), Jack, Matthew and Mya; and his 11 great-grandchildren, Benjamin, Vincent, Joseph, Ashton, Luke, Brooke, Charlotte, Elizabeth, Leo, Reid and Annie. Jack lives on through the strong memories of love and the deep connection felt by all his family.
Born the fourth of eight children on December 1, 1930 to the late Ambrose and Mary Doris (nee Driscoll), Jack was proud of his family and his roots in Keene, Ontario. Jack will be greatly missed by his sister, Agnes Doris, and sisters-in-law Viola Doris and Diane McConnachie, and joins his siblings Marie, Richard, Catherine, Paul, Edward and Terry, who have predeceased him. Jack was loved and admired by 43 nieces and nephews and enjoyed connecting with his countless Doris and Driscoll first, second and third cousins, who he loved to see at the many Doris Family Reunions held in the Keene area, often attended by distant cousins from Ireland.
At the age of 13, Jack and his family left Keene for the opportunities of Peterborough. As a young man, Jack was a talented athlete and enjoyed a variety of athletic pursuits. He excelled at hockey and softball, in particular. His left-hand pitching earning him his life-long nickname, “Lefty”. Jack was a loyal Toronto Maple Leafs and Blue Jays fan. Like many men of his generation, Jack entered the workforce at a young age. His 40 years working at General Electric saw him climb through the ranks, beginning his career as a fitter/welder and retiring in 1990 as Department Manager of Shop Operations. He was a dedicated and conscientious worker, gratified by the opportunities available to him and always willing to lend an ear and a hand to his co-workers.
Jack and Sheila were introduced on a blind date in 1950, dancing the evening away to Bobby Kinsmen and His Orchestra at Club Aragon in Peterborough. That date eventually led to their marriage on July 28, 1951 and a life filled with love, laughter, family and service. Together, they sailed through the good times and weathered the storms when the seas were choppy. Early family life for Jack and Sheila revolved around their children, their extensive family, their friends, work, sports, continuing education courses for Jack, and St. Alphonsus School and Parish.
Jack was close to Sheila’s family, “The Grady Clan”, enjoying the Grady Golf Tournaments, travels to Florida, too many card games to count and flying with his favourite pilot, Ron Belton. Jack will be dearly missed by Sheila’s entire family, particularly her surviving siblings Mickey (Ron), Jim (Susan), Colleen (Frank), Bonnie (Wayne) and Ann.
Jack remained forever proud of his involvement with one of Peterborough’s largest co-operative building projects. In 1953, under the guidance of Bishop Francis Marrocco, Jack and many others explored the idea of co-operative housing. Men involved with the project worked through the day at their regular jobs, studied the building trade at night, and went on to build one another’s homes in the evenings and on Saturdays. By July 1956, 41 families had moved into their new homes, now affectionately known as “The Greenhill Subdivision”. The original families remain close to this day.
In 1966, Jack’s interests turned to politics after he was elected as a Trustee on the Separate School Board. One of his fellow Trustees recognized his political potential and suggested he run for City Council in the next municipal election. Jack took that advice and was first elected to Peterborough City Council in 1967, ultimately becoming Peterborough’s longest serving City Council member. He enthusiastically and selflessly served the citizens of Peterborough for 45 years, representing Monaghan Ward for 39 years and serving as Mayor for another 6 years. Jack served under nine Mayors: Joseph Behan, J. D. Csumrik, Douglas Galvin, Philip Turner, Cameron Wasson, R. J. Barker, Sylvia Sutherland, Paul Ayotte and Daryl Bennett. After retiring from Civic politics in 2014, and in honour of his long and dedicated service, Jack was awarded Queen Elizabeth II’s Diamond Jubilee Medal, The Key to the City of Peterborough, The Mayor’s Civic Award, and Homegrown Homes’ Lifetime Achievement Award for Community Betterment.
What set Jack apart was his compassion and his open heart for all he came in contact with, particularly those in need or less fortunate. He gave his time generously. He listened with true interest and believed everyone had an important story to tell. He maintained the highest standards of integrity, always dealing openly, honestly and ethically. He operated on the deep-rooted belief that we are all in this life together and truly equal. He always made people feel good about themselves. He was a model of community-mindedness and truly loved his fellow man. His example created an obvious path to follow. He will be sorely missed!
Sheila and the rest of Jack’s family would like to thank the wonderful staff at Jackson Creek Retirement Residence, Peterborough Regional Health Centre and St. Joseph’s at Fleming for their compassionate care. They also thank Jack’s past family physicians, Dr. Don Spink, Dr. Jeffrey Friesen and Dr. Jordan Crane, for their kindness, caring and abilities.
Jack’s Funeral Mass will be celebrated in the CATHEDRAL OF ST. PETER-IN-CHAINS, 411 Reid St. Peterborough, on Friday, March 24, 2023 at 10:30am. Reception to follow in the Highland Park Funeral Centre, 2510 Bensfort Rd. Peterborough.
In Jack’s honour, donations to The Mount Community Centre, Crossroads Shelter or Peterborough Regional Health Centre would be appreciated.
Online condolences may be made at www.highlandparkfuneralcentre.com
The Mount Community Centre
1545 Monaghan Road, Peterborough ON K9J 5N3
216 Simcoe Street, Peterborough ON K9H 2H7
1 Hospital Drive, Peterborough ON K9J 7C6