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Karen Joan Rutherford Becker

This obituary is protected by copyright by MacCoubrey Funeral Home Limited. Proudly serving Northumberland County in the province of Ontario, Canada. All rights reserved.

Karen Joan Rutherford Becker

September 20, 1938 - August 16, 2022

Our dear Karen passed away on Tuesday, August 16 post surgery while in the Sunnybrook Hospital Cardiovascular Intensive Care Unit. Born in Picton, Ontario, she grew up on a nearby farm with her loving parents, mother Beulah Ruth Tubbs (née Brummel) and father John Albert Tubbs. Predeceased by her dear younger brother Marshall (Mary), Karen is survived by her beloved husband Paul Becker and cherished daughters Susan Rutherford (Stelian Anton) and Gillian Rutherford (Glenn Mitchell). Loving Gramma to Jack, Ned and Joseph Staples; and doting Aunt Karen to nieces Julia Tubbs and Anne-Louise Marriott and nephew Graeme Tubbs (Emily) and all of their children. Missed by sister-in-law Elizabeth Becker (Blair) and brother-in-law Peter Becker (Maureen). Karen was a bright and determined child who put a high value on education despite the limited career choices for women in the 1950s. After high school, she spent a year as a Temporary Certificate teacher, instructing multiple grades of students, some taller and older than she was. She enrolled in the School of Nursing at the University of Toronto, joining sorority Kappa Kappa Gamma, and graduated as a proud member of the Class of ’61. At U of T, Karen made life-long friends and met her first husband, Ian Rutherford. While they lived in Montreal, Karen worked as an RN at the Lakeshore General Hospital and as a school nurse. In Toronto, Karen found the career that she truly loved as a highly successful real estate professional with Royal LePage. Karen met Paul Becker in 1993. They married in 1997 and moved to Cobourg in 2005. Sharing many passions, including travel, Paul and Karen explored the UK, France, Greece, Italy, Portugal, Atlantic Canada, Haida Gwaii, and many points in between. She took her daughters on wonderful trips, including Paris, Washington State and Tuscany. She treated her grandsons to memorable Grade 9 excursions to Paris and New York City. Karen shared many gifts with her family: a lifelong love of reading, joy in being outdoors (camping across Canada and canoe-camping were great passions), a flair for gourmet cooking, storied organizational skills and fabulous personal style. Karen showed strength and determination to succeed at everything she tried and made each of us feel seen and loved. We will cherish so many wonderful memories. Special thanks to sister-in-law Mary and family for loving support during a very difficult time. Thanks also to the compassionate and highly skilled professionals in the Schulich Heart Program Care Team at Sunnybrook Hospital Health Sciences Centre, especially during Karen’s final heart-related illness. And our thanks to Danielle Scott and Julia Lonsberry of Scott Home Care Services. If desired, donations in Karen’s memory may be made to the Sunnybrook Foundation or Alberta Cancer Foundation.
Please join us for a Celebration of Karen’s Life from 1 to 4pm on Sunday, September 25 at MacCoubrey Funeral Home in Cobourg. An opportunity to share your memories will begin at 2pm.


Reba Smith - September 29, 2022 DONATION

A Memorial Donation has been made to the following charity:

Alberta Cancer Foundation

nancy biggar - September 25, 2022 DONATION

A Memorial Donation has been made to the following charity:

Heart and Stroke Foundation

nancy biggar - September 25, 2022

Dear Paul, I know you will have received many many messages since you lost Karen. Finding the right words to express my sympathies is not easy. I have been thinking of you and the heartache you must be experiencing losing your life partner who meant so much to you. Grief comes in waves and today will be particularly difficult. Please know that your neighbours and friends at Arlington are here for you. Nancy Biggar

Marguerite Prachowny - September 17, 2022 DONATION

A Memorial Donation has been made to the following charity:

Sunnybrook Foundation

Marguerite Prachowny - September 17, 2022 DONATION

A Memorial Donation has been made to the following charity:

Sunnybrook Foundation

Susan Robertson - August 31, 2022 DONATION

A Memorial Donation has been made to the following charity:

Sunnybrook Foundation

Bill & Wendy McAllister - August 30, 2022

Paul and Family, Our sincere condolences to you and family through this very difficult time.

Brooke Galonski - August 30, 2022

Karen was a volunteer with the NHH Auxiliary from 2008 to 2012, 4 great years of service. During this time she made many friends at our amazing hospital who all remain grateful to get to know her. She will be very missed by our volunteers. On behalf of the Northumberland Hills Hospital staff and Auxiliary, we are sending our condolences to Karen's family and loved ones.

Blair Rourke - August 29, 2022

Dear family and friends of Karen. I was also part of the small group at U of T in the late 1950s mentioned by Maggie (then Male). At that time, I considered that I had a special bond with Karen (then Tubbs) because we both came from rural Ontario at the time of farm consolidation that was giving financial stress to our farm families. After leaving the Toronto area, I maintained contact with Karen and Ian (Rutherford), as well as Maggie and Martin (Prachowny). I visited both families whenever possible, first by myself, and later with my wife, Christine Waters. One year, Karen, Ian and their family were living in England, at a time when me and my family were also living there. Our two families, including their two daughters and our two sons, were able to interact (I thought successfully!) on the two or three exchange visits that we had. I hardly need to add, that I have many happy memories. As others have noted, part of this was because of the wonderful hospitality that Karen provided; on visits, one felt immediately at home and at ease. Blair

Marguerite Prachowny - August 26, 2022

Dear family & friends of Karen. I know Martin would join with me to extend condolences and messages to you. We met as small group at U of T in the late 1950s and have kept in touch, more or less, ever since. Through the years in Happy Valley, Montreal, Toronto & on to Cobourg. With ups and downs punctuating our long friendship. Karen was a loyal friend along with Paul and Susan & Gillian and always ready to get together. They were good years. with love to all, Maggie

Holly P Smallpiece - August 25, 2022

My prayer's and condolences are with you, Paul Gillian, and Susan. Karen looked after me one summer, when I was 8. Staying at Uncle Jacks. She was allot of fun. Rest in peace.

Mary Sellers Mitchell - August 24, 2022

As a University School of Nursing classmate, I enjoyed Karen’s company throughout the years. I admired her strength and fortitude with whatever life gave her. Karen certainly left her mark!

Joselyn proby and Don Retson - August 24, 2022

Please accept our condolences. So sorry you have lost a wonderful mum.

Lisa Seagrave - August 23, 2022

Our thoughts are with you Paul, Gillian and Susan. It was a privilege knowing Karen. She was a petite force of nature. With love from those who love you in Yellowknife.

Gerard Bondy - August 23, 2022

Paul & family, so sorry for your loss. Gerard & Penny

Karen Cortesis - August 23, 2022

Dear Paul Im so sorry for your loss. Karen was so engaging and spirited..I really enjoyed the time I spent with her. She will be missed… Thinking of you Karen

Patricia Rogerson - August 23, 2022

Dear Paul and all the family, I was so sad to hear of Karen's passing. She had suffered so much and we were all so hopeful that this treatment would help her to enjoy a more comfortable life. We are thinking of you Paul, with love Trish