Eleanor passed away peacefully at the St. Paul’s Palliative Care Unit on April 3, 2017 after a brief bout with cancer. She was 81 years of age. She was predeceased by adoptive parents George and Irene Shepherd, birth mother Blanche Marjorie Baker, husband Andrew, and Jack Taylor (half brother). She is survived by son Warren Rutherford, daughter Dawn (Frank) Martino, grandchildren Adam and Paris Martino, half sisters Bernice (Ken) Carlson, Marj Davis, Isabelle (Ron) Dosdall, Fern (Russ) Hamilton, Leona (Meckley), and Deanna Taylor.
Eleanor was born in Regina on March 21, 1936 and adopted by George and Irene Shepherd on June 12. She grew up on the family farm in the West Plains district of Southwestern Saskatchewan (near the town of Senate) with her older adoptive brother Gordon and a bevy of cousins nearby. In 1950 she moved to Regina to attend Luther College for her Grade 10. Grades 11 and 12 were taken at City Park Collegiate after the Shepherd family relocated to Saskatoon. After graduation, Eleanor worked for the Children’s Aid society at Kilburn Hall for two years, and later attended Teacher’s College and the University of Saskatchewan where she earned her permanent teaching certificate. She taught Grades 1 and 2 at Mayfair and Greystone Heights elementary schools during 1957 and 1958, and married Andrew Rutherford on July 5, 1958. After a one-year stint in Estevan in 1959, where husband Andrew was employed by the Department of Natural Resources, the couple returned to their lifelong address on Ferguson Ave. in Saskatoon.
Eleanor’s first child Warren came along in 1960, with daughter Dawn arriving in 1962 when the couple were briefly living in Lethbridge, Alberta. As a stay-at-home mom, Eleanor put her Grade IX standing in piano from the Royal Conservatory of Music to good use by teaching a number of students. During this time she also worked as a representative of Avon. She re-entered the nine-to-five workforce as a receptionist, and later a bookkeeper for C.B.C. Saskatoon after graduating from Robertson’s Secretarial School in 1978. Her career with the C.B.C. lasted until her retirement.
In her retirement years Eleanor became both a master cake decorator and earned the designation Master Gardener from the University of Saskatchewan. With that she became a proud volunteer gardener for grounds of Saskatoon’s Ronald McDonald House.