It is with great sadness that the family of Hazel Wager (nee Ladd) announces her passing at the age of 86. Hazel passed away peacefully, with her family and good friend at her side on February 21st, 2023. Beloved wife of the late John (Jack) Wager. Predeceased by her parents Edwin and Bertha Ladd (nee Brear). Loving sister to Lenard Ladd and his wife Darlene. Cherished aunt to DeeDee Fisher and her husband Calvin. Dear great aunt to Colby and Madison Fisher.

Hazel grew up on the Ladd family homestead on the Magnetawan River near Maple Island. She adored all animals whether farm, wild, or her precious pets. Growing up, she said her happiest times were spent in the barn tending to the animals, particularly the baby lambs. Hazel always had a special way with animals as if they sensed her gentle soul and caring nature.

Hazel’s first job was in the cookery at Camp Ak-O-Mak in Ahmic Harbour. A few years later, she met and married Jack Wager. From then on, she was a devoted house wife and home maker but never shied away from work. Throughout her life, she did plenty of outside work such a cutting the grass, snow-blowing the driveway and handling firewood. Hazel and Jack were not blessed with children, so pets became their family. Many birds, rabbits, dogs, and a cat were fortunate to be raised and cared for by Hazel in her adult life. She became particularly fond of the Samoyed breed of dog and had at least 4 of these beautiful white dogs throughout her life.

Hazel and Jack lived a simple life and did not yearn for anything beyond that. Aside from their home on Highway 124, they spent almost every weekend at their cabin at Maple Island. Winter did not deter them from going to the cabin and they would snowshoe or snowmobile in to get there each weekend. Eventually, Jack’s health began to decline and they sold their treasured cabin. He passed away in 2006 and Hazel spent the next 16 years living independently along with her last pets, Becky the dog and then Tootsie the cat.

It was later in her life that Hazel met Kathy Loch. Though there was a difference in their ages, they formed a connection through their shared stories of life and their passion for animals. A friendship ensued and Hazel considered Kathy a very special friend. Hazel was also lucky to have two wonderful neighbours for over 60 years. Jessie and her husband Wayne Crisp, and Tim Gapp lived and grew up across the road and became an important part of her life at Badger’s Corners.

The family would like to thank Dr. Anderson and the staff in Acute Care and the Palliative Unit at West Parry Sound Health Centre, for their compassion and care of Hazel during her short time there.

As per Hazel’s request, cremation arrangements are entrusted to the Logan Funeral Home (705-746-5855) 81 James Street, Parry Sound, Ontario. A private service and interment will be held at the Maple Island Cemetery later this spring. If desired, sympathy donations can be made to the Canadian Wildlife Federation and the West Parry Sound Health Centre.