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Mrs. Edith Stark

Mrs. Edith Grace Stark, beloved wife of Murray Stark of 64 years,  passed away at the age of 89 at the Chatham Kent Health Alliance on Friday, September 25th, 2020. Edith Stark of Chatham, formerly of Merlin, was the cherished daughter of the late Vernon and Hazel Irene Irwin of Merlin.  She was a loving mother to Elizabeth Stowe and husband Kelly of Blenheim, and Miriam Dodman and husband Peter of Kent Bridge. She will be forever missed by her 10 grandchildren and 14 great grandchildren. She will be warmly remembered by her grandchildren as someone who had the gift of making the ordinary seem extraordinary. She is predeceased by her siblings Ruth Crothers – Richardson, James Wallace Irwin and Mary Frances Dowker. Edith was blessed with the gift of music,  which her mother encouraged at an early age. She began to share her gifts in her teens, playing the organ and piano for services at the Merlin United Church. She went on as an adult to further her studies, completing her Piano Teachers’ Diploma (ARCT) from the Royal Conservatory (1954), as well as her Organ Performers degree from Western Conservatory (1968), grade 9 voice certificate, and corresponding theories. Her career included playing at the Blenheim United Church,  St. Andrews United Church (Chatham), and First Baptist Church  (Chatham).  Her home was always filled with music, offering after school piano and theory lessons, as well as organ lessons as needed. She also had a studio in Chatham for a number of years. Edith directed many choirs over her career, including youth choirs that her own children were involved in.  Edith was heavily involved in the Kiwanis Music Festival Chatham for most of her professional life, filling different roles as needed. In addition, Edith was a lifetime member of the ORMTA-Chatham branch, including president. Cremation has been taken place with the family internment at a later date. Arrangements have been entrusted to the Alexander and Houle Funeral Home, 245 Wellington West, Chatham, 519-352-2710. Friends planning an expression of remembrance for Edith are asked to consider the Ontario Heart and Stroke Foundation, Diabetes Canada, or a charity of your choice. Online condolences may be left at

“Where words fail, music speaks. ” – Hans Christian Andersen

Expressions of Sympathy: Ontario Heart and Stroke Foundation,

Diabetes Canada, or a charity of your choice

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Alexander & Houle Funeral Home Ltd
245 Wellington Street West,
Chatham, Ontario
N7M 1J9

Phone: 519.352.2710
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