* Video produced by Helen's family *
HELEN CHRISTINE HAMMOND
December 31, 1931 - August 17, 2021
In the early morning hours of August 17, Helen Hammond of Calgary, Alberta, died peacefully in her sleep. She was 89 years of age
Helen was born in Chatham, Ontario, in 1931, to Murray and Harriet Smith, where she thrived as a young girl. Aside from numerous scholarly achievements, she also attained her Life Guard certification and often told the story of rescuing and resuscitating a young boy from the Thames River in Chatham.
In 1950 Helen left Chatham to attend the University of Western Ontario. She was one of the first three women in Westerns Ivey School of Business Administration where she graduated at the top of her class with an HBA. While there she was the president of Pi Beta Phi Fraternity for Women and also a majorette for Western's Mustang Band. At Western, Helen met and fell in love with Brock Hammond (HBA (Psychology), BMA) who fittingly, was the Band Master of the Mustang Band.
After graduation Helen and Brock moved west to Calgary, which at the time was a small city of 165,000. Helen joined Rick Fellows in establishing a Scandinavian import store on 17th Avenue SW, which they named Lyntoque. As Helen and Brock's family grew, Helen left Lyntoque and devoted her life to her husband and three children. She was a long time member and supporter of Grace Presbyterian Church and an active volunteer in charitable, educational and cultural endeavours. Helen was the president of the Junior League of Calgary 1970/71. In 1971 Helen resumed her business career, this time as an executive with an economic consulting firm, Foster Research. In the 1980's she was appointed to the board of the Alberta Motion Picture Development Corporation and in the following years served on several other boards.
Helen enjoyed reading books and playing bridge. She loved to cook and her wonderful Sunday dinners were famous amongst her children's friends. Her husband Brock was on the Calgary Stampede Grandstand Committee for almost 25 years, six as Chairman. Throughout this time Helen hosted many elegant Grandstand Committee functions which often included entertaining the Grandstand Show's guest performers.
For 25 years, Helen and Brock took their children back to Southern Ontario on a regular basis visiting her parent’s summer cottage on the shores of Lake Erie. While living in Calgary, Helen and Brock also enjoyed time at a property they shared with friends in Scottsdale, Arizona, and later in life, they both began visiting their daughter Michele’s cottage at Lake of the Woods in Ontario. After Brock's death in 2004, Helen continued to make the trip on her own.
Helen was remarried in 2007 to Larry Purdy. During their marriage Helen and Larry made several trips to Lake of the Woods as well as to Russia and Hawaii. When Larry passed away in 2019, Helen moved to Winnipeg to live with her daughter Michele and her family until her death.
Helen is survived by her eldest daughter, Cynthia Dyer of Nanaimo, British Columbia, Cynthia’s sons Calum and Lachlan, Calum’s wife Caletja and their daughter Charlotte; daughter Michele Beaumont, her husband Josh and their three daughters, Helen, Deirdre and Adrienne of Winnipeg, Manitoba; Elliot Hammond of Calgary, Alberta as well as her sister-in-law Lois Smith of St. Thomas, Ontario and Lois's son Jeff and his family. Helen will also be missed by many relatives on Brock's side of the family as well as Larry Purdy's son Brad and his wife Shannon.
As Helen requested, there will be a private family service at a later date and her cremated remains will be scattered at Lake of the Woods
Helen's death has saddened us deeply. She was smart, determined and generous, a dignified and lovely soul. She will always be remembered as a very loving and caring wife, mother, grandmother, great grandmother, aunt, great aunt and friend.
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