By Dianne Cornish • REVIEW STAFF
Linda Drummond was a quiet, unassuming woman with a great capacity for giving. She also had a deep and abiding faith that sustained her through her valiant battle with cancer. But on Nov. 7, she succumbed to the disease, passing away peacefully at The Carpenter Hospice in Burlington at the age of 59.
The Toronto native left a lasting legacy to Flamborough and area residents, donating land on 5th Concession Road East for the Flamborough Baptist Church and a century-old, Victorian country house, also on the 5th Concession, for use as a transitional home for women and children. The donations came jointly from Linda and her husband, Ross, who survives his wife of 19 years.
Drummond House, the home that provides a safe haven for women and children in crisis, has served the community for 10 years and the church has been providing spiritual services for area residents for the past 13 years.
Debra Tigchelaar, executive director of Drummond House, said her life has been deeply impacted by the generosity of the Drummonds. “They changed the direction of my life,” she said while relating how Drummond House came into being. In a tribute to Linda, which she wrote several months ago, Tigchelaar tells how the simple word, “yes,” uttered by the Flamborough woman made such a difference in her life and in the lives of countless other women and children, “rescued from the most horrific traumas and the most difficult of life’s trials.”
Working at the time at McMaster University, Tigchelaar had “a great ambition” to open a home for women and children in crisis. “I vaguely knew Linda then and the house was just sitting there and not finished.” But in the spring of 2002, the Drummonds invited Tigchelaar to tour the home and, before the tour concluded, Linda said “yes” to the vision that Tigchelaar held for a ministry that soon became known as Drummond House.
“I don’t think she realized the impact of what her ‘yes’ meant,” the Drummond House director said, adding that it has touched the lives not only of many women and children, but also the staff, volunteers and board members at the house who have “witnessed the miracles in themselves” through their work there. “The generosity (of the Drummonds) to allow us to have this project on their farm has been nothing but miraculous.”
Linda’s giving nature was evident in many other ways. “She did a lot for the community and her heart has always been for the community,” said Tigchelaar. Drummond and her husband were actively involved in Living Rock Ministries, a non-profit Christian outreach that provides assistance to homeless and impoverished youth in the Hamilton area.
A resident of Guelph for a number of years before moving to the Drummond apple farm in Flamborough after her marriage to Ross in 1993, Linda had great respect for the environment. She built a duck-nesting box and installed it near a pond on the farm, located directly across the road from Drummond House.
Linda provided unconditional love for her two children, Lucas Trudgian and Rachel (Trudgian) Anderson and received the same in return. Besides her husband and children, she is survived by two brothers, Gord and Irv Semple; a sister, Carol Semple; sisters-in-law, Sandy and Kenda Semple; a daughter-in-law, Megan Trudgian; four grandchildren, Noah, Victoria, Kaleb and Abigail; and Ross’s son and daughter-in-law, Hugh and Toni Drummond and their two children, Fatima and Cole.
Describing Linda as “very gracious,” Rev. Bill Thornton of Flamborough Baptist Church said he was impressed by her determination “to finish the race of faith and finish it well.” He also admired her courage and faithfulness. “She accepted her sickness and did not waver from all the things she was committed to,” he said.
The family would appreciate donations to Drummond House as expressions of sympathy.