Marti, Hanna

January 21st, 2018

It is with great sadness that we announce the passing of Hanna Martí at Victoria Hospital on January 21, 2018 at the age of 77. She died peacefully after a long battle with Parkinson’s Disease, leaving two sons, Alex and Dani, and friends and family members in many parts of the world. Hers was not an easy journey. The Finns would say she was endowed with masses of ‘sisu’ – grit, determination, courage and resoluteness. Too true, but actually she was Ingrian and proud of it, born in a tiny corner of northeastern Europe where Finnish was the language. She was forced to leave her native village as the hostilities of WW II ravaged her community. She lost her father and her little sister to the war. The remainder of her family sought refuge in Sweden, where she was educated and eventually secured a degree in English and Spanish. She met Antonio, her future husband, while studying in Spain, and they migrated to Ontario, where she studied at Western and went on to work in the School of Library and Information Science as a specialist in rare books. Even more than her work, her family meant everything to her. The loss of her beloved Antonio in 2006 was a blow, but her boys remained the centre of her existence.  Hanna will be remembered as an exceptionally talented linguist who was totally at home in Finnish, Swedish, Spanish and English, as well as being competent in several other languages. She was quick to point out grammatical errors committed by folks who thought they were correctly speaking their native tongue. She had an exquisite design taste, as her home attested, and was an impeccable hostess. Those who ate at her table were treated regally. She sang in her church choir, and was proud of her role in the London Pro Musica Choir, of which she was a member for many years. She travelled widely in Europe, where she and Antonio maintained a cottage in Andorra, and worked as a librarian on a cruise ship which encircled the globe. Hanna was endlessly curious, delighting in the details of nature; she retained all her life this same sense of wonder at the world. Her early experiences in war-torn Europe provided her with a fine sense of social justice, and in her later years she dedicated thousands of hours to immigrants caught up in the complexities of a new language and new culture. A Memorial Service for Hanna will be held on Tuesday, March 27, 2018 at 1:30 p.m. at FIRST BAPTIST CHURCH, 568 Richmond Street, London.  Those wishing to make a donation in memory of Hanna are asked to consider the Parkinson Society or the London Health Sciences Foundation.  A tree will be planted in memory of Hanna. 

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Book of Condolences

Peter & Theresa HylandHannah was a valued friend and a colleague at London Pro Musica for many years. I admired her strong musical aesthetic, her intellect and her warmth. She was always a welcome addition to our dinner parties. Even when she was struggling with Parkinsons, she maintained her wit and devotion to the arts. She was often in the audience at our LPMC concerts. We shall miss her grace, her dignity and her friendship.
Sallie and Alex HammondWe will remember Hannah for her gentle, thoughtful comments about life in general. A gracious and charming lady. Hannah was a friend to many.
Sallie and Alex HammondWe will remember Hanna for her gentle, thoughtful comments about life in general. A gracious and charming lady, Hanna was a friend to many.
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