May (Kileel) Oley
With heavy hearts, the family of May (Kileel) Oley wishes to announce her passing in the early morning hours on Sunday, January 31, 2021. May was born on May 4, 1928, in Fredericton, NB, and never wished to live anywhere else but in her beloved home, along the banks of the St. John River. She was the youngest of six children born to Ethel (Ramey) Kileel and Joseph Kileel. Her forebears immigrated to New Brunswick from Lebanon in the 1890s, and she learned from them the pillars of her life: faith, family, service, and a prodigious work ethic. The last of her siblings, she was also predeceased by her husband, George Oley (2015), and this past December by her youngest son, Frank. Left to mourn are her sons David and Stephen (both of Fredericton), her daughters Joanne (Vancouver) and Margaret (Maine), her eleven grandchildren, five great-grandchildren, dearest sister-in-law Peggy Kileel, beloved nieces and nephews and members of the Kileel, Oley and Ramey families.
May graduated from Fredericton High School in 1945 and commenced her studies at the University of New Brunswick to become a nurse. She married in 1947 and devoted herself to being a wife and raising her five children. She taught, by example, what it means to live a faith-driven life of unconditional love and service. She became her children’s and grandchildren’s most devoted teacher and selfless nurse. She nourished them in her faith and in her love.
All her life, May was a devout member of St. Dunstan's Roman Catholic Church, and rose early each day to attend Mass. Because of her deep faith, May knew the purpose of her life and did all she could to serve, not only her immediate and extended family, but also anyone who needed her help. She kept the following quote taped on her refrigerator door for all to see: "Not all of us can do great things. But we can do small things with great love." (Mother Theresa)
May was a woman of prayer. Through her example, her children and grandchildren discovered how prayer could help them in their studies, keep them safe from harm ("Bless yourselves"), guide their lives, and heal broken hearts. Her hospitality knew no bounds. She delighted in preparing and serving "Sunday Dinner" and reveled in gathering her family and friends around her table. "Come for dinner!" was her constant refrain.
While the disease of Alzheimer's took away May's memory some years ago, it did not diminish her intrinsic core of grace and beauty, or expressing her great love and affection, blowing kisses, and saying "I love you" not only to her family but also to everyone she met.
The Oley family is thankful for the compassionate care she received from her Bayshore companions who so patiently accompanied May on her journey with Alzheimer's. A Memorial Mass and burial will be celebrated at St. Dunstan’s Roman Catholic Church at a later date. She never drove by the cemetery without praying for all the souls of the faithfully departed. For those who wish, memorial donations in May’s honor may be made to the Alzheimer Society of New Brunswick. McAdam’s Funeral Home has been entrusted with arrangements.
"Mother: the most beautiful word on the lips of mankind." (Khalil Gibran)