Rita Blaikie

Obituary of Rita Blaikie

Rita France Blaikie


Marie Rita France Blaikie (née Bryson) passed away on February 25, 2023, while on vacation in the Bahamas. Rita loved travelling.

Rita was a wife, a mother, a grandmother, a sister, a daughter, an aunt, and a great friend to many. Rita grew up in Val D’Or, Québec with her mother and father and three brothers. After completing her Registered Nursing degree from the Université de Montréal in 1965, she worked for a year in Ottawa, then travelled to Europe for 3 years. She worked in hospitals in Belgium, Switzerland, and Germany and took side trips to France, the Netherlands, Italy and Yugoslavia.

            In 1969, she returned to Canada, spent a year working in Montréal, then moved to Port Cartier, Québec, to be closer to her parents and brothers. There, she met the love of her life; John Blaikie. They met in 1970 and after a brief courtship, were married in 1971. Later that year, they moved to Terrace, British Columbia, where Rita worked in obstetrics, at the Terrace Hospital. John was working for Frontier College. Rita and John hold the record for the first baby born in Frontier College history, their first son Christopher John.

            In 1972, they moved to Fredericton, New Brunswick. Rita worked in the General Hospital, while John continued his graduate studies. Their second son, Erick Lucas, was born in Fredericton, in 1975.

            That same year they moved to Winnipeg, Manitoba, where Rita worked again in obstetrics at the Victoria Hospital, she continued her Bachelor of Arts studies in French Literature. Four years later, they moved to their forever, family home in Brandon, Manitoba.  

            John worked in the English Department at the Brandon University, while Rita got a nursing job at Brandon General Hospital and coordinated the French Continuing Education program at BU for 7 years, until it was discontinued. Rita completed her Bachelor of Arts, which was awarded from the University of Manitoba.

            In 1983, while John was completing some home renovations, they got a call from St. Boniface, their family was completed by the adoption of their daughter Emilie Nicole.

            After 30 some-odd years at Brandon General Hospital, Rita retired, but did not leave behind her love for the career. She was asked to be a sessional instructor at Assiniboine Community College for the Licensed Practitioner Nursing program, obstetrical practicum students. She also completed one year at Brandon University, as a sessional instructor for the Psychiatric Nursing Program. During this time, she was appointed a position on the Brandon General Hospital Board of Governors, later Prairie Mountain Health, for 7 years. She also served on the Provincial Committee for Seniors Health, recommending appropriate health measures to the ministry, for senior healthcare. That committee was dissolved after the PC’s won the subsequent election… 

            Rita was predeceased by her father Roy Bryson and her mother Elizabeth Bryson (née Quesnel) and her older brother Ken Bryson.

            She leaves to mourn and celebrate her life, her husband of 52 years, John Blaikie, her sons; Chris (Xisra) and Erick (Jennifer), her daughter Emilie (Joel Cox) and his parents Clint and Betty Cox. Nine grandchildren: Gavin, Braden, Tristan, Sarah, Mackenzie, Alexander, Danika, Lucas and Owen and one great granddaughter, Astraea. Her brothers Marc Bryson (Antonine) and family and John Bryson and family. Her brother-in-law, Peter Blaikie, sister-in-law, Gail Blaikie (James Atkinson) and many nephews, nieces, cousins and other extended family and friends.

            A celebration of life will be held at Brockie Donovan Chapel, 332 8th St., Brandon, MB on Thursday, March 23, 2023 at 1:00 p.m. A reception will follow the service.

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Celebration of Rita's Life

1:00 pm
Thursday, March 23, 2023
Brockie Donovan Chapel
332-8th Street
Brandon, Manitoba, Canada
(204) 727-0694
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