Mary Janet Parkes

Parkes, Mary Janet (nee Henderson) passed away on September 16, 2022, at the age of 85. Mary will be mourned by all those who loved her and supported her until the end. In particular her children Mark, Tom (Sharon), Ronda (Alistair), and Michael’s widow Irene, her grandchildren Chantel (Ryan), Paige (Adam), Nicki, Kristin, Macsen, Marlee, her great-grandchildren Parx, Oscar, Jax, her niece Dawn and many other nieces, nephews, cousins, and countless friends with whom she shared her limitless love along the way.


Predeceased by her husband Ron, son Michael, and daughter Pam. Mary was the daughter of Donald and Julia Henderson, and sister to Diana, June, Charlie, Donald, George, Patricia, and Dale.


Mary was deeply rooted in Sarnia, living her entire life in the place she called paradise. Many cherished memories were also created with her family in Montreal, who adored her spirit and positive outlook on life.  Her early years were busy raising a house full of boisterous children, often sharing the family home with others in need. For Mary, family was everything and there was always room at our table. She had your back when you needed support and was the best cheerleader anyone could ever have.


In mid-life she joined Sacred Heart Elementary as the school secretary finding purpose and passion through her incredible capacity to love children and create community. Tragedy struck in 1997 when she lost her son Michael in a car accident involving drinking and driving. In tragedy we sometimes find purpose. Mary joined MADD Canada and served as Sarnia Lambton President for many years helping others in their grief and working hard to bring about much-needed change. Mary was a lifelong volunteer for several worthy organizations such as Girl Guides Canada, The Inn of the Good Shepherd, St. Joseph’s Hospice, Heart and Stroke, and the Catholic Women’s League.


Living with Alzheimer’s is complex, yet Mary continued to spread love as she did throughout her lifetime. She has found peace and is now reunited with the great love of her life, Ronald.


A very special thank you to the two most generous hearts, Chantel Parkes and Dawn Cote. With your love, we squeezed out every possible beautiful minute with our mother, your grandmother, and your aunt.  Thank you from the bottom of our hearts.


Thank you to the Alzheimer’s Society of Sarnia for providing guidance, support, and respite care through the various stages of this disease.  Thank you to the staff at Care partners who helped provide care for Mary for many years at home, and to the staff at Vision Nursing home for taking care of Mary in the last few weeks of her life.  As an expression of sympathy friends who wish may send memorial donations to the Sarnia Lambton Alzheimer Society, 420 East St. N., Sarnia N7T 6Y5 or


A Celebration of the life of Mary Parkes will be held on Friday, October 7, 2022.  Please join the family of Mary Parkes to celebrate her life beginning with a Funeral Mass at 11:00 a.m. at Sacred Heart Church, 14655 Lecaron Ave., Sarnia follweed by a gathering to share our favourite memories, and a luncheon served in her honour at 1:00 p.m. at the Sarnia Golf and Curling Club, 500 Errol Rd., W., Sarnia.   .  Arrangements entrusted to the McKenzie & Blundy Funeral Home & Cremation Centre (519-344-3131)  Messages of condolence and memories may be left at