Mrs. Iris Lucchese

Mrs. Iris Mary Lucchese (Dower)

Friday, August 10th, 1923 - Tuesday, April 27th, 2021
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August 10, 1923 – April 27, 2021

Mrs. Iris Mary Lucchese, age 97 years, passed away peacefully on Tuesday, April 27, 2021, with family by her side.

Iris was born on August 10, 1923 in Truro, Cornwall, England.  Iris overcame every challenge that arose in her life, from childhood illness, to the Depression in England, to witnessing the Battle of Britain and surviving the bombing of London during World War II. 

Iris emigrated from England to Canada after the War.  Her experience as a telephone operator in London made her a natural fit as a dispatcher for Lacey’s Taxi.  She met the love of her life, Lino Lucchese, and they were married for 40 years.  In 1958 they purchased Lacey’s Taxi which they operated for 36 years.  Iris and Lino loved to travel and visited many places around the world, including many trips to Italy and England. 

Iris was ahead of her time.  She ran a business in an era when women were expected to be mothers and housewives, or if they worked, at best, a clerk or secretary.  Iris was loved by everyone.  Her family and friends thought the world of her.  Her employees, including special friend Gwen Zayots, loved and respected her, all of whom she respected and cared for in return.  Iris was a member of St. Thomas Anglican Church for many years where she made several special friendships, including Margaret Napierala.  Later in life after Lino’s passing, she moved to Glengowan Condominiums where she made many more friends and enjoyed all of the social activities.

Iris loved to swim and throughout her life did so whenever she could.  As a child she swam in Cornwall, England.  Later in life she loved to swim in Caorle, Italy during her visits with Lino and later with her son Mark and daughter-in-law Dana.  Even at 90 years old, Iris still drove and would go to the Airlane to swim and enjoy the sauna.

Iris was a 2 time Cancer survivor and overcame many health challenges throughout her life – always persevering, always bouncing back.

Iris and Lino were surrounded by friends who they considered to be family.  Rob Kovac; Achille, Lucy and Mark Baruzzi; and Nick, Alma, Lidio and Elena Soldera were all a special part of Iris and Lino’s life, sharing many happy moments and occasions together throughout the years.

She was an extraordinary woman who will be missed more than words can express.

Iris is survived by her daughter Sharon; son Mark (Dana Dragicevic); many relatives in Canada, England, Italy and Argentina; plus her grand-pup Sophie who she adored.

She was predeceased by her beloved husband Lino; her parents Percy and Gwendolyn Dower; brother Don Dower and his wife Christine; plus many other relatives in England, Italy and Argentina.

Thank you to the staff of Hogarth Riverview Manor, 7S Violet.  A special thank you to Deb Palmquist for the care and love she gave to Iris, and to all that went the extra mile to care for her.

As per her request, Iris has been cremated.  Due to the current COVID-19 restrictions, a Celebration of Iris’ life will take place at a later date.  Should friends so desire, donations may be made in her memory to the Thunder Bay and District Humane Society or the Northern Cancer Fund (payable to TBRHSF).

Arrangements have been entrusted to the Westfort Chapel, 420 West Gore Street at James.
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Service Details

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    At a later date.
    Due to the current COVID-19 restrictions, a Celebration of Iris’ life will take place at a later date.


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Private Condolence
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1 tree has been planted in memory of Mrs. Iris Mary Lucchese (Dower)

Douglas Orlowski

Posted at 11:12pm
Mark. Sorry to hear of the passing of your Mom. She always treated me like family and will be greatly missed. My condolences.

Dave Caruso

Posted at 04:10pm
Sharon and Mark ( although i knew you as Marko). I lived just down the street from your family on Christina st. I remember Iris And Lino as extremely good hard working neighbours. When Mark was starting school Iris asked me to accompany him on the way to school each day which i did and was generously compensated for. Your mother was a wonderful kind lady and being from England she had something in common with my mother. Please except my condolences as I know how hard it is to lose a mother i lost mine 4 years ago today.

Mark Baruzzi

Posted at 01:46pm
Iris will always be in my thoughts and prayers
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Paul and Cindy Kane

Posted at 01:46pm

We are so sorry to hear of your mom. I know you loved and took great care of her. Our thoughts are with you

Paul and Cindy Kane

mark baruzzi

Posted at 01:42pm
Iris was the most probably the most incredible person I have ever met. She was as much a part of our family as any family member. She loved my Mom and Dad and I and we loved Iris. She helped my family so much, especially when I was away in School and my dad took ill. Iris was always there to help and was an incredible help to mom and dad.
She was a pioneer, owning a very successful business (Lacey's Taxi) and a tireless worker. Iris was always happy to help and never asked for anything. She had incredible patience and I never saw her complain or be angry and was always gracious and kind. Rob Kovac and I went on numerous trips and cross country skiing adventures with iris and Lino and Mark. We enjoyed spending time with them. We even worked with them. I don't know any other parents you can say that about.
So many memories. Every Christmas was spent at Iris and Lino and Mark's house. Every Easter we went to the pancake house. Every Tuesday ( and sometimes Saturday) night was bingo night with my mom.

We have all lost someone incredibly special. She cannot be replaced, but will live on in our memories forever because she was so special.
I miss you so much already. I will love you forever. Rest in Peace Iris

Photos & Videos

Photo Album

Taken on Iris' 90th Birthday
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