David "Keith" Corbett

March 06, 1918 - February 14, 2013

David "Keith" Corbett

March 06, 1918 - February 14, 2013


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Obituary for David "Keith" Corbett

CORBETT, David “Keith” of Bass River, Nova Scotia, passed away peacefully in the arms of his loving daughter Helen February 14, 2013, at Williams Country Homes in Hilden, NS, at the age of 94. The son of the late Charles and Mabel (Meadows) Corbett, he was born in Bass River where he was raised and graduated from high school, after which he assisted his father with his fox fur farming business. While in Bass River, he enjoyed playing as catcher for the Bass River Rockets softball team. From 1938 – 1940, Keith trained as a nurse at the Nova Scotia Hospital. He left to join the RCMP in 1940 with the understanding that he would be sent overseas with a company of fellow officers to provide reinforcement for a Provost Company. He did not get sent, but earned the World War II Volunteers’ Medal. Keith did much of his RCMP service in various communities in southern Saskatchewan, including Assiniboia, where he met his first wife Mary and married her in 1946 in Estevan, SK. It was here that they later welcomed their only child Helen into the world. He enjoyed a warm and loving family relationship with his Sutherland in-laws and three of Mary’s brothers followed him into the RCMP, establishing a long tradition of Sutherland family RCMP service that has continued unbroken to the present day. Following his service in Saskatchewan, Keith was transferred from Regina to the Northwest Territories for four years and served in Aklavik and Fort Smith. He finished his career in Fredericton, NB, retiring at the rank of Staff Sergeant in 1961 to return to his beloved family home in Bass River. Following retirement from the RCMP, Keith expanded upon his boyhood hobby of taxidermy and established a thriving business, with much of his work being sent to him from the North. He was known throughout Canada for the high quality of his taxidermy work. Keith was a born outdoorsman and, following his return to Bass River, enjoyed many hunting, fishing, trapping and moose-calling expeditions with his brother Harold. He loved to walk in the woods, garden, observe wildlife and feed both birds and deer. He loved his home and his family and was a quiet man who possessed a wickedly quick and dry sense of humour, which could easily render those around him helpless with laughter. He was among the first to be called when there was a problem or crisis in the community, helping all around him in his quiet, organized and common-sense manner. Keith served as a councillor on the Colchester County Council from 1964 – 1968 and retained a strong interest in his community throughout his life. Following the death of his first wife Mary, Keith later married his second wife, Eva (Fulton) Dunning in 1969 and they enjoyed many happy years together. In 2004 Keith and Eva moved to the Parkland Estates Assisted Living facility in Truro, where he remained until he moved to Williams Country Homes in Hilden in 2011. For over 45 years, Keith was a member of the RCMP Veterans’ Association and was the oldest living member of the association in Nova Scotia’s “H” Division. He is survived by his daughter Helen Tremayne, sisters Hilda (Carl) MacKenzie and Iva (Freeman) Scott, sister-in-law Jean Corbett, nephews Keith (Diane) MacKenzie and Stan (Juanita) Corbett. He was predeceased by his first wife Mary, his second wife Eva, his brother Harold and brothers-in-law Carl MacKenzie and Freeman Scott. Keith will be fondly remembered by step-son John (Eleanor) Dunning and their daughters Cynthia (Chris) Dunning Zwicker, Karen Dunning, and Kim Dunning. Keith cherished visits from and photos of the girls and their families. A heartfelt thank-you goes to Dr. Donald Rowe for the excellent care he provided to Keith for several years, and to the VON and the Palliative Care Team’s Dr. Courtney Smith and nurse Lisa Wilson for the very compassionate care they gave Keith during his last days. A profound thank-you also goes to the wonderfully kind, capable and loving staff at Williams Country Homes, including Mary Barkhouse who sat with Keith during his last three nights. Without exception, they treated Keith as though he was their own cherished family member and helped him to feel like the much-valued person that he indeed was. There are not enough positive words to describe the high quality of care they provided and the depth of the family’s appreciation. A special thank-you goes to Dolly, the resident kitty-caregiver at Williams Country Homes. With unerring instinct, she shares her comforting little self with those residents who need her most. A frequent visitor to Keith ever since his arrival at the home, Dolly spent long periods curled up on his bed with him during his final hours, bringing both him and Helen great comfort. In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the Colchester East Hants Medical Centre Foundation, the Bass River United Baptist Cemetery Fund or a charity of choice. At Keith’s request, there will be no visitation. Cremation has taken place and his funeral will be held on Tuesday, February 19, at 2 p.m. at the Colchester Community Funeral Home, 512 Willow Street, Truro, Rev. Florence Antle-Brison officiating. Interment will take place at a later date in the Bass River United Baptist Cemetery. Condolences to the family may be made at www.colchestercommunity.com

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