“I would like to be known as an intelligent woman, a courageous woman, a loving woman, a woman who teaches by being.” -Maya Angelou
It is with profound sadness we announce the passing of Tammy Marilyn Verlie Strong of Fredericton, NB. Surrounded by those who were most precious to her, in the comfort of her home, Tammy peacefully left this earthly world, but her presence remains.
Born in Stephenville, NL, to Gladys Harvey and Lionel Strong, she is survived by her brother Rennie, and her nephew Tyler. Tammy was a tiny ball of energy, light, and love. Though her roots were in Newfoundland, she made a life and home in New Brunswick where she met the love of her life and soulmate, Paul Saad. A love story for all ages, their relationship brought Tammy her most precious gift, their son Alexander Strong-Saad (Caylen Hunt). The enormity of Tammy’s loss will be felt from every corner of the globe by colleagues, friends, and an extensive family that absolutely adored her.
Nationally and internationally impactful, throughout her career, Tammy worked with provinces, territories, and countries as far away as South America and within Europe, to ensure that educational systems were safe, welcoming, and affirming to Indigenous students, newcomers, refugees, women, and members of the Queer community. In collaboration with organizations such as Egale Human Rights Canada and the OECD – an organization based out of Europe with more than 50 representative countries – Tammy brought world-class conferences to New Brunswick. She spearheaded critical initiatives, such as the original Policy 713, in support of our most marginalized and vulnerable students and families. She was recently awarded the Queen Elizabeth II Jubilee Medal and a New Brunswick Human Rights Award in recognition of her work.
Tammy’s empathy, courage, and diplomacy were unique and unrivalled. Her ability to connect with others on a human level enabled her to broach the most sensitive of subjects, calling others in, rather than calling them out. A staunch feminist from a young age, she worked tirelessly in every stage of her life to champion equity and social justice.
Filling the lives of all who had the fortune to know her with pure, uninhibited joy and laughter - the contagious kind that came from the bottom of her soul – was her superpower. Laughter that passed through walls and floors and found its way to your ears, nourishing your soul.
Please join us in celebrating the legacy, love, and light of Tammy Strong.
A service will be held in Fredericton on Tuesday, December 19th at 3:30 pm at St. Dunstan’s Catholic Church with a reception to follow at 4:30 pm at the Beaverbrook Art Gallery. Please refrain from wearing black. Tammy would want this to be a colourfulandjoyful occasion. For those who are unable to attend, the service will be livestreamed: https://vimeo.com/event/3964426.