FRYER, Mary Beacock - May 24th 1929 – October 29th 2017
And I will purge thy mortal grossness so
That thou shalt like an airy spirit go.
Midsummer Night's Dream, Act III, Scene I
Sadly we announce the death of Mary Elinor Fryer (née Beacock.)
She is much mourned by her husband Geoffrey Fryer, their children Barbara (John Vandenbroek), Elswyth (Andrew Welch) and Alex (Claudia), and their beloved grandchildren Caleb, Andrew, Adam and Timothy.
Mary was born in Brockville, Ontario, to William G. Beacock and Hazel Seaman Beacock, who traced her ancestry back to the United Empire Loyalist Caleb Seaman. She attended the University of Toronto, graduating with Honours in Geography in 1952. She then attended the University of Edinburgh, graduating with a Master's degree in Historical Geography in 1954. After returning to Canada, she worked as a librarian and teaching assistant in the University of Toronto Geography department. In 1957 she married Geoffrey.
As their children grew, she began teaching geography at Scarborough College and started to write Canadian history books under the name Mary Beacock Fryer. They cover the period from the American Revolution into the nineteenth century. Escape: Adventures of a Loyalist Family is a fictional children's novel based on her ancestors. King's Men: The Soldier Founders of Ontario was presented to the Duke of Edinburgh in 1984. Loyalist Spy is about John Walden Myers, the founder of Belleville.
Bold, Brave and Born to Lead is about Isaac Brock, With co-author Christopher Draycott she wrote a biography of John Graves Simcoe, the founder of Toronto (then called York.) She wrote biographies of Simcoe's wife Elizabeth Gwillim Simcoe (to whom we owe a great deal of knowledge about early Toronto) and their son, Francis Simcoe. She contributed to many other books including Loyal She Remains, a major pictorial history of Ontario. Her services to Canadian history were recognized by the award of a Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal in 2012.
Her funeral will take place Friday November 10th, 1:00 pm at Trull Funeral Home, 2704 Yonge St., Toronto.