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July 20, 1930 – August 24, 2021

Clara Adlakha passed away peacefully at the Windsor Park Manor, Ottawa surrounded by loved ones. Clara was predeceased by Satya Pal, her husband of 56 years. Born and raised in Sunderland, England, Clara later married and moved to India in 1956, before finally settling in Canada in 1964 which she called home for the next 57 years. Clara was a loving mother to Paul (w/ Jan Taylor Adlakha), David, and Claire (w/ Mark Fitzpatrick), and cherished grandmother to Ian (w/ Bryanna Melenhorst), Olivia (w/ Chris Boutilier and great grandson Teddy), Anna, Emma, Erika (w/ Patrick Kitumaini), Erin (w/ Mitch Kerr), Laura, Jenna, and Kelly (w/ great grandson Brody). She was predeceased by siblings Maureen, Keith, Elvera, Margaret, Ronnie, Joan, Len, Ethel, and Doreen.

Clara was an exceptional artist with her knitting needles – the sweaters she made as gifts are still treasured by many friends and family. She also had a natural green thumb – her garden always produced a vast array colours, vegetables, and joy. The Adlakha home usually had the smell of baking –homemade bread fresh from the oven, or pies that didn’t last long. Clara dedicated her life to her family and friends, always thinking of others first. The friends she made lasted a lifetime, starting with those from England, from India to her homes in St. Catharines, Cape Breton and finally Ottawa. And she always surprised first time acquaintances with her sharp, dry wit that made you smile.

Her final days were comfortable due to the personal care provided by Alem and MC (thank you both for all you did for around the clock care), the staff at Windsor Park Manor, and the final gentle move by First Memorial.

Arrangements are under the care and direction of First Memorial Funeral Services – Fairview Chapel – Ottawa, ON. In lieu of flowers, it was Clara’s wish to those who remember her please consider contributing to their favourite charity instead. Due to pandemic restrictions, a small service for immediate family will be held at Windsor Park Manor on September 24th. Condolences may be left at

One response to “ADLAKHA (Née BALBACH), Clara”

  1. Captain Vivek Bhasin says:

    I was but a young toddler when I first made contact with Clara & Peter (Satya Pal Adlakha) in the mid 1950’s. My Father KC and Uncle Peter’s association goes back nearly a century if not more when the two youngsters clambered aboard the decommissioned British troop carrier SS Dufferin which was the Merchant Marine and Naval Training ship anchored of the Gateway of India, Bombay. The keys to both Deck, Engine and Naval careers.

    Uncle Peter was ordained to be a rare engineer holding both a diesel and steam-combined Chief Engineer’s certificate of competency. It was during his time in Southshields and Sunderland England that he met and married Clara. My Father married his bride Shail.

    Clara and Uncle Peter moved to Calcutta where he was a real hot shot with Garden Reach workshop off the River Hooghly.

    The Adlakha’s were a tribe of five and mine became very close friends over the years. Every winter when I came down from Boarding School up in Simla The Himalaya we met often and the Christmas season in Calcutta was out of this world!

    Clara was a Beautiful English Lass; Captained her house with efficiency discipline and chuckles of laughter. I do remember during the delicious mango season in India she bundled Paul, Sheel ( Claire) Roy ( David) into the big tub so they could indulge and relish the Alphonso mangoes making a downright mess as she bathed them simultaneously.. the kinda “ killin two birds with one stone “ strategy!

    I was Blessed to have continued my contact with Clara, Uncle Peter and PC&D (and Mark) over the many years even after they decided to make a better life in Canada.

    Having visited them both in Port Hawkesbury ( where I had a whale of a time), Ottawa ( more sober) and they visiting my parents in Delhi and even flying down to San Jose Costa Rica to spend time with me where I had a four year stint with a shipping firm.

    I called them often from my ports of call, later from Costa Rica and finally England; it was Clara who always picked up the phone and after a minute always said “ Ok Bonnie I’ll pass you over to your Uncle Peter who will give me all your news”.

    Clara and Peter were a tight loving pair and they believed in giving their children roots but also wings. Clara was a great cook and kept her Indian sojourn intact by making 24 legs of sumptuous Chicken curry whenever the boy’s got home from College and the Canadian Coast Guard not to mention her sumptuous cakes and pastries. Her accent bordered between Canadian Nova Scotian and Newcastle English but when she got on the blower with her sister in Sunderland it was pure “ jordie”.

    The generation of Clara & Peter and Shail and KC believed in long term relationships. They were friends for life in spite of such immense distances. And this holds true for us, the next generation.

    As Clara joins Uncle Peter on his gigantic cargo vessel in the Heavens above, she will assist in all chores on board,but looking down often to see her brood continuing with their circle of life.

    My heartfelt condolences to the families of Claire & Mark, Paul & Jan, David and their extended families on the passing of Clara…also on behalf of my families in India and Sweden.

    Captain Vivek Bhasin
    Karlstad Sweden
    24 September 2021

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