Jean Horne

Jean Grace Horne

1932 - 2024

Share Your Memory of

Obituary of Jean Grace Horne

To view the funeral service livestream, please click here.


Passed away peacefully on Friday March 29, 2024, at the age of 91.


Survived by her husband James Horne; her sons Malcolm Horne (Heather) and Doug Horne (Diane); her brother Malcolm Harding (Marylou); and her four grandchildren.


Predeceased by her mother and father, Grace and Harry Harding.


Jean Horne (nee Harding) was born on October 20, 1932, in Yorkshire, not too far from Sheffield, England. She spoke often of her wartime experiences, spending time in bomb shelters during the blitz, hearing the sound of machine gun shells rolling down the roof from dogfights overhead, and remembering the smell of gasmasks. Her father was related to the game warden of the Earl of Anglesey, and even very recently Jean spoke of how much she enjoyed visiting the Earl’s estate in Anglesey as a child, how she’d cry when she had to leave, and of the love of dogs that she had her entire life (despite never owning one).


Her father moved to Canada to aid in the war effort and the family lived in Windsor, ON, where Jean attended high school and met her future husband, Jim, at a church social. Jean attended nursing school where she made many lifelong friends while Jim, who had worked at Ford, continued his education in Divinity at Huron College. They are both still remembered in Lion’s Head, ON, for the summer they spent there as Jim took on the role of minister at the Anglican Church. The couple moved to Brooklyn, NY, and Jean walked across the street to get a nursing job at Grace Hospital, Brooklyn, while Jim pursued his PhD at Columbia.


When Jim finished his PhD, the couple moved to Waterloo, ON, where Jean began working as a nurse at St. Mary’s Hospital while Jim took up a post at the University of Waterloo.  In 1960, the couple welcomed a son, Malcolm, and in 1963 Douglas was born. Jim took up a position as a minister at St. John’s Anglican in Kitchener. Faithful members of the church, they stayed at St. John’s for many years, and as they aged, they moved to St. George’s, Forest Hill, where they remained active members.


After nursing, Jean decided to learn how to swim, worked her way through to being a lifeguard and an instructor and could be seen every summer swimming around Lion’s Head Harbor. She decided later to become a runner, started competing and became a well-known Master’s athlete, holding 11 world records and a very large box of medals from all over the world. When running was no longer possible, she took up race walking and won medals in that event. While all of this was happening, she returned to school, earned a BA and MA in history, and came very close to completing a PhD. She also worked at the Kitchener Public Library for many years, most of them on a bookmobile.


One of the defining characteristics of Jean was that she never stopped moving. If she wasn’t doing something new and ran out of accomplishments in a certain endeavor, she’d move on to the next and climb to the top of that field. The motto “Just do it” seemed tailor made to Jean. She demanded excellence of herself and believed that anyone else, if they worked at it, could achieve whatever they set out to do. She insisted on fine food (thank you, Langdon Hall), was known for her great clothes, and attended the Stratford Festival from its very beginning until quite recently. Jean was a winner in everything she took on, wasted no time, and gave 100% to every challenge. Hers was certainly a life well-lived.


Special thanks to the staff on the 5th Floor of St. Mary's Hospital, particularly the Gerontology and Palliative Care staff.


Visitation will take place at St. George’s of Forest Hill Anglican Church on Thursday, April 4, 2024, at 12:00 p.m. The funeral service will immediately follow at the church at 1:00 p.m. A reception will take place in the church hall following the service.


In lieu of flowers, condolences for the family and donations to St. John's Kitchen (The Working Centre) in Kitchener may be arranged through Erb & Good Family Funeral Home at or by calling 519-745-8445.



12:00 pm - 1:00 pm
Thursday, April 4, 2024
St. George's of Forest Hill Anglican Church
321 Fischer Hallman Road East
Kitchener, Ontario, Canada

Funeral Service

1:00 pm
Thursday, April 4, 2024
St George's of Forest Hill Anglican Church
321 Fischer-Hallman Road
Kitchener, Ontario, Canada


A reception will follow the funeral service in the church hall.