Leslieville Lives; Stories from the ‘Ville – Louisa Burgess Corbett

Meet Louisa. I first heard of Lou through a mutual friend who takes singing lessons from her. He spoke of her often and that she would make a great Leslieville Lives story; for many reasons. I finally met with her and can vouch that my friend was right. Her life/experiences may strike a chord with some of you out there: from her climb to fame and fortune in the theatre, which saw a death in the family and discrimination in the ranks reroute her life, to infertility, adoption(s), the break up of her marriage from her husband of 20 years when he came out as gay, and devastating heartbreak which led to a nervous breakdown.

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Leslieville Lives; Stories from the ‘Ville – Christiane Tetreault

Meet Christiane. Many of you know her from her pop-up markets, events and ongoing involvement in the community, if not her tall, dark and striking stature! I first met Christiane in the early days of my Day in the Life of Leslieville project. It was a blustery & snowy January day and she was bent over shovelling the sidewalk. I snapped a photo of her, which went in that day’s post, but before continuing our walk, she raised her head, said ‘Hi’ and was gushing over Sunshine. We’ve been friends and business barterers ever since.

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Leslieville Lives; Stories from the ‘Ville – The Sisters of Life

Meet the Sisters of Life. From left to right: Sr. Marita, Sr. Marie Veritas, Sr. John Mary, Sr. Josephine Rose, Sr. Maria Kateri and Sr. Claudia Marie (not in featured photo).  Many of you have seen them around Leslieville; walking, rollerblading, skateboarding, cycling, on the streetcars and occasionally….juggling! Their friendly and visually captivating presence in Leslieville has brought a smile to many of us for years now. When I asked Sr. Maria Kateri, during my visit, why they wear their habits during these outings, she replied, “Well, it’s that or PJs!” You can add ‘good sense of humour’ to their welcoming ways.

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Leslieville Lives; Stories from the ‘Ville – Rachelle Gordon

Meet Rachelle.  Our paths crossed briefly over the last few years before I sat down with her a few weeks ago to hear her story.  When I was in the process of fostering Sunshine from the Toronto Humane Society, she was working there in the Volunteer Dept, sharing the same office as the Foster Programme. We bumped into each other a few times after that on Queen St. after I’d adopted Sunshine. Rachelle recognized her right away, which was no surprise. She knew Sunshine well before I did!  I knew I wanted to do a story on someone who lived in our neighbourhood who worked with rescue animals and Rachelle was front of mind.  Like minds find connection. Facebook can be a beautiful thang that way.

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