Obituary for Doris Cox (Shasta)
Doris Margaret COX (nee Shasta) (January 22 1915 – July 18 2017)
After a long and beautiful life, our dear Mother and Nana died peacefully in her sleep in the early morning of July 18, 2017 at Dufferin Oaks in Shelburne, Ontario. Beloved Mother to Marian Jorgensen of Shelburne. Ever loving Nan to the late Philip (Lisa) Jorgensen, Randal (Sue) Jorgensen of Gravenhurst and Eric (Carol Ann) Jorgensen of Shelburne. Beloved Great Grandmother to David and Sarah Jorgensen, and Emma and Peter Jorgensen. Dear Great Great Grandmother to Emma and Shawn’s son Mason. Predeceased by her father George Shasta and mother Sophia Shasta Marek (nee Ziyone) and by her siblings Joseph Shasta, Connie Fick and Patricia Eames. Aunt Dode will be remembered with love by her many nieces and nephews, as well as by her many cousins of various generations around the country. Although most of her friends have passed before her, she will be remembered fondly by so many of their children, and all the other people whose lives she touched in her long career and life.
Cremation has taken place; only a small family service will be held.
Doris was born in Kreuzberg, Manitoba in 1915. Her family’s story growing up in rural Manitoba was probably a common one of the descendants of Land Grant pioneers in the area west of Gimli: a life of hard farm work and providing for the family. Her father worked for the railway, but he died young, leaving her mother to provide for four children. Her plans for higher education dashed, Doris married as a teenager and ended up striking out on her own, bringing young Marian to Toronto as a toddler.
Nana knew the value of hard work, and she worked a variety of jobs to provide for Marian, but then she landed a job as a waitress at Toronto’s popular Bassel’s Restaurant at Yonge and Gerrard. Her smarts caught the attention of Mr. Bassel, and he asked her to work in the office for him. At first she resisted, because she made good tip money as a waitress, but later she ended up managing Bassel’s and many of his other business affairs. In all she was at Bassel’s throughout its heyday and for over 30 years, retiring in the late 60’s.
She moved up north to Larder Lake after retirement, where her sister Connie lived, but it was a difficult transition for her after so many years in the heart of the city, and she moved back down to a condo in Etobicoke. She returned to the work force as well, with several years at Pinkerton Security in payroll, as well as doing taxes for H&R Block. Even after retiring again, she found part time work to stay active.
Her talents went beyond the business world as well. An avid reader and learner, Nan excelled at dressmaking, often copying the fancy outfits of the day; she would reminisce about nights on the town, and would always interject “…and I looked sharp!”. She loved nothing more than to cook a fabulous meal for family and friends, and of course, she had access to all the secret recipes from Bassel’s. Her baking and cooking were renowned; she always knew that you had room for just a little more.
She lived in her condo independently well into her nineties, until her health faded a bit, and her last few years were spent at Dufferin Oaks in Shelburne, where her family was close.
Doris was a strong, smart, loving and caring woman. She will be forever loved and missed by all who knew her.
The family would like to thank the staff of Dufferin Oaks in Shelburne for all their assistance in Doris’s fading years, and thanks as well to the wonderful staff of The March of Dimes in Etobicoke, who helped us keep Doris in her own home when she first ran into her health difficulties. In lieu of flowers, please consider a donation to the Princess Margaret Cancer Foundation so that they can continue their great work, or to a charity of your choice in Doris’s memory.