Sudden death shocks Rye

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By Julianna Cummins

Darryl Rahim had no idea Margery Winkler was sick when he saw her at Ryerson’s architecture program awards in November.

“She asked if she would see me next year,” said Rahim, a third-year architecture student. Rahim worked with Margery on two major group projects in courses he took during his time studying at Ryerson.

On Dec. 15, 2009, Margery, an architecture professor who taught at Ryerson for over 20 years, succumbed to an agressive case of breast cancer. It was the second time the disease hit the 57-year-old.

“She loved the school, the faculty, the students. It was very satisfying for her,” said Vladimir Winkler, Margery’s husband of 33 years, in December.

“From the way that she explained things, you could really tell it was her pride and joy,” Rahim said of Winkler’s passion for landscape architecture, her area of expertise.

“She really cared that we understood it, and took it seriously.”

Kendra Schank Smith, the chair of architecture sciences at Ryerson, said Winkler always found ways to be involved in the community, such as having her students design landscapes for different high schools or working on collaborative projects with Canada Blooms.

“She brought people together, and people trusted her,” she said.

The architecture department was “quite stunned” by her death, said Schank Smith, because of how quickly she passed.

“I try to avoid passing her office,” said Vera Straka, a fellow Ryerson architecture professor and a personal friend of Margery.

Straka said Margery demonstrated her ability to unite people when she co-ordinated the latest architecture awards ceremony — her last big project at Ryerson.

“She had to deal with many people with many different ideas, with administration and so on… she managed to get a very successful result in spite of being pulled by different opinions,” said Straka.

Winkler said in the short time between Margery’s death and the funeral, “the whole world knew,” about his wife’s passing.

“She was one of those people who always got along with everybody,” Winkler said.

Margery is survived by her three children, Alexandra, Michael and Jaclyn.


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