Haack, Gladys Vivian
Birth Date/Place: October 6, 1912, Nova Scotia Valley
Death Date/Place: December 24, 2012, Chester
Gladys Haack was a well-known resident of Chester and of Lunenburg County. Glady was born in the Nova Scotia Valley on Oct.6, 1912, child of Nellie and Edward Hergett ,where she and her brother Todd grew up on a farm in Upper Dyke. At an early age Glady knew she wanted to be a nurse and as soon as high school ended she went to Farmington ,Mass. U.S.A. to live with an aunt and take her Nursing Diploma .She returned to Nova Scotia to pursue her career and soon after graduated from the University of Toronto with a degree in Public Health. Glady had a long career in Public Health working in the South Shore Region of Nova Scotia for the V.O.N. and the Dept. of Health.
During those years of nursing , Glady was remembered as a community leader, going to the schools to teach young people the facts about good life choices, well before this subject became a curriculum item, trying to educate youth and give them a better future. She also was there for many home births and was often quietly helping young women whose lives had become a struggle with poverty and abuse. Helping new mothers and setting up clinics for family support in health was her call. As Glady grew into her retirement years , she never ceased to use her skills to help out friends who were ill or grieving. She told great stories about being "care giver" to Cyrus Eaton. Glady was later on a Board of directors which governed the Endowment Fund he left to the schools of the area for the education of young people. Even in the nursing home, in her last years , she would reach out with concerns for others. Her good works are many and left untold as she would wish.
In 1949, Gladys Hergett fell in love and married an engineer, Alfred Haack who came to Nova Scotia from the west, originally Ohio . Gladys and Alfred lived in Bridgewater for a time and also in Sydney where Alf had work. During those years Glady encouraged one of Alf's three sons to come live with them and resume his schooling. Ralph credits Glady with saving his life with her recognition of his potential and encouragement to achieve a successful career. As a mutual project She and Alf built the Windjammer Motel and a home on Haddon Hill. Later Glady, with others , invested in and developed the land on Haddon Hill where the present residential community exists. Glady fully embraced Alf's family. Glady and Alfred had a daughter, Gretel who was the love of their life. Gretel was an avid equestrian in her youth and Glady spent much time taking her and the other young ladies of Chester to horse shows and equestrian events all over the province. Alf died in 1974 which left Glady a widow for many years .
Socially Glady was the Grand Dame of Chester in her later years. Famous for her parties serving her own recipies of fish cakes and beans, mushroom casserole, onion sandwiches ,which she called her RCMP detractors, to name but a few of the delicious treats. If she saw a newcomer to Chester in church, they would be invited over for a drink to meet others. She was the best welcome wagon the village could have. Glady loved her bridge with friends and doing the New York Times crosswords. She was a long time member of the Tuesday Painters and a very accomplished amateur artist. Glady was a true to the core Liberal and often appeared in brochures to kick off a campaigne. Today she would have loved the charming Justin Trudeau and no doubt would have drawn him to her clan of many admirers.
Glady's final goal was to reach 100 years and have a big party. She did it with grace even though the trials of aging were badly attacking her memory. After this date was reached she went into decline going quietly with her natural dignity and style.
Her long years could be attributed to her belief in a healthy lifestyle, wonderful sense of humour and her outgoing nature to help others when in need. She played her bridge games with" great alacrity" and managed her life with the same finesse. Gladys Haack died at 4 o'clock on Christmas Eve 2012 just in time for a cocktail in the great life beyond. She is so missed.