Leslieville Lives; Stories from the ‘Ville – Diane Walton

 

Meet Diane. Many of you know her from her photo project, A Day in the Life of Leslieville, and…this one. We first met over our respective dogs at Cherry Beach. Maybe 10-12 years ago. My Bella loved her George. George loved me. Diane and I had the best conversations making a round or two then. We still see each other, sometimes in the most random of places. That east end whirlwind seems to be everywhere! And the kind of friend I’m glad I found.

Diane was born and bred in the suburbs of Toronto of 1st generation Italian (Mom) and Brit/Irish (Dad) parents. She’s the youngest of six: 5 girls 1 boy, and nearly didn’t make it into this world, spending 6 weeks in hospital with spinal meningitis, just an infant. Meningitis wasn’t the only ‘near-death experience’ she survived. Others involved cliffs, a scarf, bears, jumping off a moving train, coral snakes, a car & a rickety bus at 10,000 ft. “Recalling some of these, I have to believe I’m here for a reason!”

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Leslieville Lives; Stories from the ‘Ville – Theresa Tate

Meet Theresa. More commonly known as ‘Mrs. Tate’ or ‘Mother Tate’. She hardly needs an introduction. As the matriarch of the East End Garden Centre for decades now, we’ve probably all crossed her path at some point.

I made it a point not to profile folks who own businesses in the neighbourhood as it might look like favoritism, but I’ve made an exception here. Besides, she hardly needs the press! As iconic as the EEGC is, her story will make you better understand and appreciate the life of this extraordinary entrepreneur.

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Leslieville Lives; Stories from the ‘Ville – Denise Lemon-Clayton & Stephanie Clayton

Meet Stephanie & Denise. Theirs is an extraordinary journey.

I first heard of Stephanie & Denise through Donna Riddell (from The Duke fame) one day when I was chatting with her at the bar. “Omg, you have to do Stephanie’s story”, she said. She told me about Stephanie’s condition after one of the comedy night fundraisers held at The Duke was going to benefit Make-A-Wish. I contacted Denise shortly after and it took the better part of 8 months (the everyday challenges) before we finally connected.

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