Elizabeth Papp, a 105-year-old Champagneur Avenue resident whose birthday was marked annually for the past few years by the Park Extension News, died suddenly on Aug. 14 after falling at her home and striking her head, said her only child, Ernest.
Elizabeth had lived in Park Extension since 1964. Born in Rumania on Nov. 2, 1903, she came to Canada in 1929 with her husband who died in 1968. Although frail, she had rarely suffered any illness during her lifetime, said her son, and she had remained quite active to the end. Although slow physically, she was very lucid. On the night of the accident, she stumbled in her bedroom and immediately summoned Ernest who shared the apartment with her for the last 45 years.
“Every morning I would listen to hear if she was getting out of bed and she was okay,” he said. “But she called me at two o’clock in the morning, saying ‘Ernie, come here,’ and I didn’t know what happened. She was sitting on the floor. She fell. And then I realized she had bumped her head, so I called 9-1-1.” At Sacré Coeur hospital where she was taken, she seemed at first to be recovering. “She seemed to be okay, and I said I would see her tomorrow, and she gave me a big smile and I patted her head and kissed her.
“At two in the morning I got a phone call that she was in intensive care, and so I figured that if she was there that was pretty serious,” he said. “I went to the hospital and looked in and sat down and picked up her hand. Her eyes were closed. She couldn’t hear me.” The funeral, which was attended by longtime friends and former neighbours from St. Dominique St., was held at Our Lady of Hungary Church. Elizabeth was buried next to her husband’s grave at Notre Dame des Neiges cemetery, which she had visited annually on her birthday as a longstanding tradition.