Spitzer , Dr. Mary Lou – July 25, 1936 to April 10, 2015
Mary Louise Spitzer was born to Dr. Wilfred Waite and Florence Gowman in Brantford, ON. She died following a sudden and unexpected illness on Friday. She was predeceased by her brother William (Ursula), is survived by her brother Robert, sister Susan and her children Paul (Nancy); Pam (Kevin); Carl (Kim); Brenda (Eamonn) and beloved grandchildren Zoё, Hanna, Andrew, Emily, Stephanie, Caroline, Ryan, Louise, Seamus and Rachel. She was predeceased and fondly regarded by Dr. Walter Spitzer. She was greatly loved by her sister-in-law Ruth Matisko (Barnard) and will be dearly missed by her eight nieces and nephews. Mary Lou studied medicine at the University of Toronto, followed by her specialization in Ophthalmology in Michigan. She will be remembered for her compassion and skill as a physician in Dundas, ON with partner Dr. Keith Mann and her amazing office team whom she loved. She performed countless vision saving surgeries and mentored many medical residents at McMaster University. Mary Lou was passionate about providing medical care to poor, underserviced communities in Newfoundland through the Grenfell Mission as well as in D. Republic, Haiti and most recently with Medical Ministry International in Columbia, still providing medical care at age 74! She was deeply committed to St. Cuthbert’s Church where she was an elder and beloved friend and will be greatly missed by the McMaster Women`s Group. Mary Lou greatly enjoyed her “retirement” years and especially the ten years she was able to enjoy with her companion Len Huget. Mary Lou was incredibly cultured and loved reading, travel, theatre, music, antiques, history, Bridge and was an accomplished seamstress, chef, artist and mentor. She will be remembered as a multi-talented, humble, gracious, generous and optimistic person who was a wonderful friend and an amazing mother.
The family will receive visitors at Cattel, Eaton and Chambers Funeral home, 53 Main St., Dundas on Thursday, April 16 from 6pm to 9pm. A memorial service to celebrate Mary Lou`s life will be held on Friday, April 17 at 2:30pm at St. Cuthbert`s Church, 2 Bond St. Hamilton. In lieu of flowers donations may be made to Medical Ministry International Canada.
We will miss her smile as she comes into the shop she was such a warm loving person. . She was so much fun to work with and she did such lovely work. My thoughts are with her family her passing will make a very large hole in your hearts. from the girls at Beads of Colour.
Reconnecting with Mary Lou and the rest of the “ladies of 62” at our 40 th meds school reunion, brought much fun, laughter, and warm memories into all our lives. We kept in touch with travel, bridge, and more reunions. Mary Lou was warm,genuinely connected to us all,proud of her family,committed to contributing to medical care for the under serviced world community,and had a wicked sense of humour .
She will be missed by all her meds school family. We are grateful for her presence in our later lives, and the memories she leaves in our hearts.
Our sincere condolences to her family.
Mary Lou was a lovely soul and a good friend. She was always upbeat and positive and looking forward to her next adventure. She spent her life helping others in every way she could and asked nothing for herself. She was fun to be around and always left a happy feeling in her wake. She will be missed terribly by far more people than can ever be known. Her philanthropy, caring and concern was genuine, heartfelt and sincere. She may be gone from this earth, but her warmth will longer for a long, long time. I hope that warmth will comfort her family, as it does her friends.
May the thoughts of sympathy help to ease your pain at this difficult time.
My sincere condolences to her family.
My sincerest condolences to the family. I was long time patient of Dr. Spitzer until retirement. I must have started seeing her at the age of 4 or 5. Always so kind. Always fun to sit in the chair. A great lady and professional. She will be missed.
Deepest sympathy. Doc was one of a kind ,she was my grandmothers doc and was just so so kind I will miss not seeing her around town,with her bright smile! Sincerly Shirley Zess
While I did not know Dr. Mary Lou personally, the wonderful things I read here do not surprise me, since I have known her greatest legacy — the family she loved so much. The intelligence and drive it took for a woman of her generation to become a doctor, the heart to provide so many services to generations of the poor, and the energy to remain active well into her seventies — my prayers go out to her dear family. The heavens have received a special woman indeed. xox.
We were so very sad to read about Dr. Spitzer’s passing. My memories went right back to a Saturday night in 1975 when there was a terrible accident in my kitchen with a knife that was used for lifting floor tile. The kids were helping my husband, and were kneeling towards each other when the knife in my daughters hand, slipped and went into my four year old boyse eye. Dr. Spitzer was called into emergency that night to operate, and she done an magnificent jo
Both during the surgery, and for years afterward. My husband,my son, and my mother, and I, became patients of her over the years until she retired. To our family she was an angel, in an eye doctor’s office. I envied her because she had class in a capital “C” I hope she is looking down from heaven and knows how much we thought of her.
Dear Brenda and family,
Our sincere condolences on the passing of your beloved Mom, I know she will be deeply missed. We are truly inspired by the passion and many gifts your Mom shared in her life. Wishing you all love and comfort during this time.
Laura and Scott
While I have not had close contact with Mary Lou for many years, I will always be thankful for her hospitality to me when the Spitzer family was in New Haven,CT. I had many a meal at your home and some happy times on the beach. Please accept my sympathy.
My deepest condolences to the family. I did not have the honour of meeting Mary Lou but her daughter Pam is a dear friend of mine, and I can only imagine what an amazing person her mother was. Just from reading about the work she did and how she helped people tells me she had a huge and generous heart and I know she will be deeply missed by many.
I remember Mary Lou so well, for over the years we connected many times. She was always a good friend although of late we did not communicate as often. Paul, Pam Carl and Brenda: it is a heavy burden you must carry right now and you will miss her in many different ways. That is the way of life on this earth! But we know that is not all there is and one day all will be plain. But lonely times WILL come and you will be given strength to ride it through.
Look forward to what God has in store for you and accept His care for you.
What wonderful memories we all have of such a talented and giving person.
Love and Blessings on you all
Pauline (and I know that Milt would echo this.)
Mary-Lou was a good friend and bridge partner. My deepest sympathy to the family.She will be missed.
I was delivered by Dr. Waite in Brantford in 1948. Dr. and Mrs. Waite were held with great esteem in our community because of their work in the church, medical circles, and helping local groups in need. As a child I was often a playmate with younger sister Susan. I can close my eyes today and picture their refined home, the beautiful piano
the little swiss coo coo clock, the dishes. But mostly I remember the home full of positive people, visiting missionaries, church leaders, community organizers and Miss Swayzee in the kitchen. At the time Bill and Mary Lou were away at school. Susan and I took great interest in a fellow named Walter who came to visit Mary Lou when she was home for the weekend. This boy drove the biggest, cleanest, oldest car I had ever seen. (My father told me it was a “Hudson” from the 1930’s. Susan and I would play games on the front porch pretending not notice that Walter was courting Mary Lou and being so respectful to Dr. Waite. That was our entertainment for the evening. It was great fun for us. It has been many years since I have thought about these things but the memories rushed back as I read the article on Mary Lou’s life. She lived a life that her dad would be so proud of. I can’t help but picture Dr. Waite standing at Heaven’s gate to welcome his daughter. A life truly well lived.
I finally met Mary Lou Spitzer ; this wonderful greatious christian lady, when she moved into our condominium… In the mid 1950’s (the boom year) I worked with an architect Len Huget, on his design team. Years later we (the team) from time to time would get together. Len would rave about this wonder lady that he was keeping company with. Both spouses had died and both retired. The bus trips and boat cruises they would take. He said he missed her when she went on her medical missionary junts from time to time. Mary Lou was the same at our Condo Coffee Club, a smiling happy lady, even filling in as a temporary board member, an unfinished term on our condo board. That was Mary Lou !!! Our condolences to her family !! …….God Bless………….Lou Sentesy and Dawn Bryden………..
I am shocked and saddened at the death of Mary Lou who was a kind and caring friend, doctor and parent, exhibiting all the qualities of the fruit of the spirit: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, generosity, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control, as found in Galatians 5: 22-23. “Well done thou good and faithful servant”. Rest well. My condolences to her family and friends. She will be greatly missed by so many people.
I came to Canada 44 yrs ago from England and was Nanny for a year living with the family. I also worked in
Dr. Spitzer’s office in Dundas 3 half days per week. This was to “save my sanity” as Mary Lou stated, necessary with the daunting task of looking after 4 children under 5 yrs old !!
During this time I witnessed and admired the amazing talents of Mary Lou both professionally and personally. I don’t think there was anything that she couldn’t tackle and put her hands to successfully.
Saddened by such a great loss and with fond memories.
We are very sorry at the passing of our dear friend. Our thoughts are with Mary Lou and her family during this time. She was always supportive of our needs. She was a very genuine lady and we will miss her very much. Love Nick and Debbie.
Dr. Mary Lou Spitzer was looking after my eyes for many years before she retired, she was a very pleasant Lady. I ask her ones if she was German and she told me that her husband was. Years later on my walk up Governors Rd. i saw this Lady planting flowers on her front yard and somehow she looked familiar to me so i stopped and said hello , you look like Dr. Spitzer and she answered back I AM . We than had a nice talk together .
My sincere condolences to her family.
A grateful patient. My sympathy to her family.
Mary Lou was a wonderful partner to work with in the eye care of Dundas and area residents for many years. She was widely recognized as being one of the best, if not THE best cataract surgeons in the Hamilton region during her years of practice. My condolences to the family and close friends on their sudden loss.
I was saddened to learn Dr. Spitzer had passed while away in Virginia . I came to know her as a high school student at Parkside. At lunch time I would walk over to the house on Cross St. and prepare lunch for Paul, Kim, Carl and Brenda. She wanted the kids to have a good, hot lunch. Often when I arrived, the house would be filled with the aroma of a delicious dinner in the crock pot. I remember not being able to stop myself from serving myself up a generous portion. I’m sure she must of wondered what was happening to her meals. She never said a word though. Despite having a busy practice she was a wonderful mother.
Living in a small town like Dundas, I have had the pleasure to cross paths with her from time to time. She always had a kind word and was glad to talk about her kids. My thoughts are with the family, Fred.
I remember Mary Lou well from our days as premed students at U of T almost 60 years ago. We were among the 12 women in a class of approximately 125 students.
I am very sorry to learn of her death.
My sincere sympathy to all the family
Ann Cuddy ( Meds6T1)
Deepest condolences to Mary Lou’s family & friends. I met Mary Lou about a decade ago when My family & I were attending St.C’s – as mothers & doctors, Mary Lou always had such a kind word to share & understood so well the balance which is often impossible. She was so proud of her children & loved the visits!
I am so sorry to hear of the sudden death of Dr.Spitzer.My condolences to her family.
In the early 80s I was an emergency patient at her office.She saved my sight and I will be ever grateful to her.I continued my visits to her until her retirement.
I will always remember her
We have great memories of Mary Lou who I first met when she was doing her Pediatric rotation while I was Chair of the Dept. of Anesthesiology at Childrens Hosp. of Michigan in Detroit and she was in her Opthalmology Residency at Wayne State University. This was the same time that her husband, Dr. Walter Spitzer, was the General Director of The Christian Medical and Dental Association – USA. In 1972 Toronto was the host of the International Christian Medical and Dental Association’s World Congress at which Walter was the multilingual – Spanish, French and English – coordinator of the program and Mary Lou was our “Hostess.”
Our families enjoyed some precious bright summer days of Sunfish sailing at our cottage in the Bruce Peninsula.
In subsequent years we would be with Mary Lou at international medical missionary activities.
Paul, Pam, Carl and Brenda took my best advice to children before I ever met them -“Pick your mother very carefully.”
Marvin Jewell, MD