TORONTO -- Mary Peel is turning 106-years-old on March 3 and her family is asking for your help in marking the special occasion.

“For me, when I think of my grandmother, all I think about is her laughter and cheer. She laughs at pretty much anything,” said Victoria Newson, Peel’s youngest granddaughter.

Peel lives at Nisbet Lodge, a long-term care home in the heart of the Danforth.

Even from England, Newson jumps at the chance to speak with her grandmother.

“They’ve been able to secure video calls at least once a week with her, with at least one family member. We love her so much and want to talk to her, so we’re taking rotations,” she said.

 Born in 1915, Peel’s family said the matriarch’s life has been filled with overcoming adversity.

“The Great Depression, having her parents die young, having to go to work at a young age,” Newson explained.

Last summer, Peel tested positive for COVID-19. Newson admits that it was a scary time for the family, but that Peel overcame the virus like a fighter, as well.


The restrictions at long-term care homes mean that Peel won’t be able to have visitors to celebrate her birthday — that’s why her family is asking the community for help in sending 106 birthday cards to her in time for the big day.

“We don’t have that many people in our family and all of her friends, basically because of her age, have passed.”

Peel has always loved reading personalized messages, which makes the idea of birthday cards so special, Newson said.

“The reason we chose birthday cards is because she loves reading them and re-reading them. She’s going to feel so loved and she’ll be laughing and smiling so much.” 

Those interested in mailing Peel a birthday card should address their messages to:

Nisbet Lodge

740 Pape Avenue

Toronto, Ontario

M4K 3S7

Virtual birthday cards can also be sent via email here.