Dorothy Noelle Mills was born on the 20th of December of 1914 in Belleville, Ontario to thirty-four year old Fred (Roland Manfred) Mills and 24 year old Florence (nee: Thompson) Mills.
Dorothy's parents, Florence, 24 and Fred (Roland Manfred) age 30, married on October 13 of 1913, in Belleville, Ontario. Fourteen months later, at the age of 25, Florence gave birth to her only child, a daughter, Dorothy Noelle Mills on the 20th of December in 1914 in Belleville, Ontario.
By 1916, the young family was living at 802 Garwood Street, in Winnipeg, Manitoba. Tragically Florence would contract and perish of tuberculosis, one of many highly contagious disease that plagued the still frontier town of Winnipeg in that time period.
At the age of 27, Florence a Presbyterian, passed away on the 2nd of December, 1916, just two weeks before her daughter Dorothy's second birthday.
Dorothy and her father Fred, would remain in Winnipeg. On the first of October, 1917, at the age of 34, Fred married 28 year old, Lillian Isabel Bott. 2nd birthday.
On the 9th of July, 1918 Fred age 35 and Lillian age 29 welcome their first daughter together, Joan, who was christened Catherine Josephine Mills, Sometime that same year Fred's sister Jean would tragically pass away at the age of 39.
In 1924, on the 21st of December, Ruthie, christened Ruth Isabel Mills was born, to 41 year old Fred and 35 year old Lillian. Ruthie was born just a day shy of her older sister, Dorothy's birthday on the 20th of December.
On the 9th of April, 1938, 24 year old Dorothy married the then, 28 year old, David Alexander Blake Payne.
In 1936 David was serving with the British Columbia Provincial Police force, he was posted to Lynn Valley. The first three of four children would be born there.
Patricia Mary (nee: Payne) Grantham was born on the 1st of June, 1939 to 24 year old Dorothy and 29 year old David.
Christopher Blake Payne would follow on August 30, 1942 and Timothy Owen Blake Payne on the 30th of December, 1943, sharing the same birth month as his mother.
The early years of Dorothy and David's marriage were spent
holidaying in the Summer with friends and family, often in-laws and out-laws happily gathered for vacations. Summer vacations with Robert and Mary Payne, David's family had become the norm. Friends, family, in-laws and outlaws gathered at Robert and Mary's place at Whaler's Bay on Galiano Island and later Salt Spring.
In 1949, David was transferred to Abbotsford where they lived on Gladys Avenue. David served with the British Columbia Provincial Police force until its absorption by the RCMP in the 1950.
David's last posting was to Burnaby. In 1952, the family was residing at 2535 Dufferin Street in South Burnaby where the last of children, Susan Elizabeth (nee: Payne) Brown was born on the 29th of May, 1953. Dave was 43 years old by then and Dorothy was 39.
Pat was just turning 14, Chris was 10 and Tim 9.
Sometime in 1954, the family moved into their new house on Ewart Street in Burnaby. It was there David would die tragically in the backyard of the family home of a heart attack on the 3rd of October in 1954. David was cremated his ashes spread on Hollyburn Mountain.
At 40 years of age, Dorothy found herself alone with four children, 18 month old Susan, 10 year old Tim, 11 year old Chris and 15 year old Patricia. Finances were tight. Good help was hard to come by and Dorothy overcome by grief, financial and parental strain experienced a break down that would see her spend time at Crease Clinic where they used the electro convusant therapy used on World War I shell shock victims to try and jar her back to normal.
For her daughter Patricia, this would mean coping not only with her own grief, near poverty, unscrupulous care givers, an infant, two fractious brothers but a mother that wasn't there when she needed her most.
Dorothy would enjoy a close relationship with both her sisters, exchanging phone calls and humorous letters through out the years.