Verna Jean Fisher  1919–1989

Verna Jean was born on January 8, 1919 to William and Harriet Fisher. During infancy she was diagnosed with spastic paralysis leaving her forever unable to walk and with her left arm crippled.

Verna Jean never attended school but was educated at home. It was here that she developed a great love of reading which led to her growing talent for writing. Her sister Grace tells of neighbourhood children gathering around Verna Jean's bed to hear her latest animal tales. One such favourite character was Winnie the cat whose exploits may have been linked to Verna Jean's own pet cat bearing the same name.

Some of the hundreds of poems that Verna Jean wrote were published in two booklets. Lines by Lamplight appeared in 1940 while Good Luck My Boys was written and published during the Second World War.

Along with community and world events her writing focussed on animals, nature, her family, and her Christian beliefs. She loved all things Irish as well and enjoyed writing about their culture and folklores.

A visitor from England, Mrs. Frances Dove,  sent copies of Verna Jean's poetry about the royal family and the empire to Buckingham Palace. A surprised Verna Jean received a plaque from Queen Elizabeth II and a letter from Buckingham Palace.

Two of Verna Jean's poems were set to music. A Child Is Born was set to music by Beatrice Cate of Attleboro Massachusetts and later played in the church which Verna Jean's sister, Grace, attended. A second poem, Christmas Joy, was set to music by a member of St. Georges Vicarage in Kent, England. This was used in a Carol Festival. 

Verna Jean passed away in 1989 after having been a resident of MacAloney's Nursing Home for 25 years.

She truly was a remarkable lady whose keen sense of humour and dauntless spirit shone in spite of her life's challenges.


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