Waterloo Region Generations
A record of the people of Waterloo Region, Ontario.

Lillian Joan Smith

Female 1920 - 2014  (94 years)

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  • Name Lillian Joan Smith 
    Born 1920  , Yorkshire, England Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Gender Female 
    Interesting Military, story 
    Military WW2 - volunteered as a plotter for the Women's Auxiliary Air Force, the female auxiliary of the Royal Air Force 
    Name Lillian Joan Croal 
    Eby ID Number Waterloo-190171 
    Died 17 Nov 2014  Cambridge, Waterloo Region, Ontario, Canada Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Person ID I190171  Generations
    Last Modified 29 Nov 2020 

    Family Alexander Kenneth "Kenneth" Croal,   b. 1919, , Scotland Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. Yes, date unknown 
    Last Modified 30 Nov 2020 
    Family ID F54173  Group Sheet  |  Family Chart

  • Notes 
    • Lillian Croal, born in York, England, volunteered as a plotter for the Women's Auxiliary Air Force, the female auxiliary of the Royal Air Force, during the Second World War. Croal immigrated to Canada as a war bride in 1946, settling in Kitchener-Waterloo.

      Growing up during the Depression of the 1930s, Croal's motto became "waste not, want not", leading to her involvement in recycling. Croal, along with her husband Ken, were among the early environmental pioneers in the community, speaking to municipal committees and community groups about the merits of the three Rs - reduce, reuse and recycle.

      Long before environmental issues were community issues, Croal tenaciously lobbied City and Regional government to start recycling programs. In 1974, Croal's submission to Kitchener City Council was referred to the City's Engineering Committee to investigate and begin implementing her ideas. In the early 1980s she was an integral part of a 10 person recycling team that piloted the blue box program in the city.

      In 1983 in recognition of her efforts, Croal was selected to receive the first blue box when 34,000 boxes were distributed to homes across Kitchener. Subsequently Croal became the poster girl for recycling in Waterloo Region and Mississauga by appearing in media reports and promotional literature. Her early actions influenced Waterloo Region's decision to offer a blue box recycling program across the entire region.

      Croal volunteered for many community organizations including: Cambridge Hospital Auxiliary, Consumers' Association, Regional Safety Council, Kitchener Beautification Committee, Local Architectural Advisory Committee, Rockway Seniors Advisory Committee and many more. In 1987, she was recognized with the Zonta Volunteer Award.

      In 2003 Croal's pioneering efforts in recycling were recognized at an official ceremony at Region of Waterloo Council where she generously donated the first blue box back to the Region.

      Past and Present Inductees. (2017). Waterlooregionmuseum.ca. Retrieved 26 June 2017, from https://www.waterlooregionmuseum.ca/en/exhibits/past-and-present-inductees.aspx


      CROAL, Lillian Joan Lillian Joan Croal (nee Smith) passed away peacefully on November 17, 2014 at Stirling Heights Care Centre. She was predeceased by her husband Ken Croal, brother David Smith, sister Thelma Bartlett and is survived by sister Margaret Rodgers. Lillian will be fondly remembered by son David (Cliff), daughters Sandra (Bob Kennedy), Stephanie (James), grand- children Alexander (Laura), Sarah, Claire, great-grandchildren, Josie, Kade, and Ewan. Lillian also enjoyed the love of her extended family and friends here in Canada, Great Britain, and Australia. Lillian came to Canada as a war bride after serving in the Women's Auxiliary Air Force in WWII and settled with Ken in the KW area. In 1953 Lillian and Ken moved to Connecticut and spent seven years on the estate of Victor Borge only to return to this area in 1960. While raising her family she contributed to many volunteer groups and organizations. Lillian was recently honoured for these contributions with her induction into the Waterloo Regional Museum Hall of Fame for "Environmental Stewardship". The family would like to extend sincere thanks and appreciation for the loving care Lillian received both from Doon Village Retirement Home and Stirling Heights Care Centre. The family will receive friends and relatives at the Henry Walser Funeral Home, 507 Frederick Street, Kitchener (519) 749-8467 for visitation on Friday, November 21, 2014 from 7 to 9 p.m. A Celebration of Life will be Saturday, November 22, 2014 at 1: 00 p.m., reception to follow. In lieu of flowers a donation in Lillian's memory can be made to the Kitchener Public Library. Visit www.henrywalser.com for Lillian's memorial.

      Waterloo Regrion Record 19 Nov 2014

  • Event Map
    Link to Google MapsBorn - 1920 - , Yorkshire, England Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsDied - 17 Nov 2014 - Cambridge, Waterloo Region, Ontario, Canada Link to Google Earth
     = Link to Google Earth