We sadly announce the passing of James Schofield, on March 15, 2019 at Peterborough Regional Health Centre. He was almost 91 and meant many things to many people. James was a caring father to daughter, Maria Celeste Scopelites. He was a jovial grandfather to Erinn Celeste Brush, her husband Deepak Ajit Mehmi, and to Owen William Wallace Brush and his partner Deborah Seabrook. James was elated to be a part of the lives of his great grandchildren Neko Celeste Mehmi and Jaya Piper Mehmi. He was the third child of nine children. His siblings included, Sisters: Saretta Koutsourakis of Ontario, Helen Makridis of Halifax, Marina (Taso) Sarlanis of Halifax, and; Brothers: George (Carol) Schofield of Halifax, John (Irene) Schofield of Dartmouth, Steven (Sharon) Schofield Eastern Passage. He is predeceased by his brother, Basil (Bill) Schofield, sister, Marjorie Maria Jonah, and his parents, Blanche Christine Skinner and Anastasios Scopelites of Platanistos. More than anything, James was a devoted husband and was predeceased by his loving wife Jessie Mae (Penney) in 2009.
Friendly to a fault, James always introduced himself as such so he could quickly follow-up with the invitation to collegially call him Jim. Always looking to spark a conversation, he was perpetual storyteller, carrying his East Coast wit wherever he went. Growing up in Glace Bay, Nova Scotia, the island of Cape Breton always had a special place in his heart. It was there, in 1950, he married the love of his life Jessie Mae; honeymooning on the Bras D'or Lakes. Soon after, they followed Jessie’s family in relocating to Toronto. Their first and only child was born there in 1953 and in 1955 they moved to Milton, Ontario. But he always returned to the East Coast during the family’s annual summer vacation.
He was proud of his long-time employment as Senior Buyer at Hawker Siddeley Canada, the Orenda Division, in Malton. Lunchtimes at work were spent playing cribbage with the Procurement gang. Luck was on his side one afternoon and was endowed with a perfect hand; for those in the know, this was truly a rare moment in cribbage history! In fact, James took great pride in teaching noobies the game and then even more pride in skunking them.
Always comfortable in a kitchen, James was ever the chef and food critic. Influenced by his father who was a restaurateur and having spent time early in life working with his brother at Bill’s Lunch. He was renowned for his main dishes as much as Jessie was revered for her baking. His classics were Jigg’s Dinner, Oven Stew and the family favourite Imperial Chicken. The two made quite the culinary pair.
James was also an active member and Elder of Knox Presbyterian Church and felt honoured to be part of the Session. He found his calling teaching Sunday school. This soon evolved into leading the Young People, an ever-changing group of youth who enjoyed being together to create plays, euchre tournaments, caroling and raising money through rock-a-thons. Jim had great impact on the lives of these youth and stayed in touch with many of them as they moved on with their lives.
The last ten years of his life were spent in Peterborough, where he moved following the death of Jessie to live with this daughter. There he enjoyed the garden surrounding the house, admonishing the success and failures of the Toronto Maple Leafs and Toronto Blue Jays, feeding the local birds and playing with the house cats Sparrow and OC.
Dad, Jim, James, Grandpa will be sadly missed and lovingly remembered.
Cremation has taken place. Funeral Service will be held on Saturday, March 23, 2019, at 2:00 pm at Knox Presbyterian Church, 170 Main St.E., Milton, with reception to follow. If desired, memorial donations to the Canadian Cancer Society or Knox Presbyterian Church would be appreciated.